BambooHR is a cloud-based HR software designed to streamline employee management processes, and it is ideal for small to midsize businesses. It has a suite of HR solutions for tracking applicants, onboarding new hires, managing employee information, monitoring paid time-off (PTO) requests, measuring staff engagement, and conducting performance appraisals. BambooHR offers a seven-day free trial if you want to learn more about its functionalities before purchase.
What We Recommend BambooHR For
With BambooHR, you get a user-friendly platform and a suite of cloud-based solutions for managing day-to-day HR processes—from tracking applicants to monitoring performance appraisals. Its HR management module not only lets you capture and store employee information but also provides you access levels and workflows for approving requests (like PTO and employee information changes) and customer service.
In short, BambooHR is best for:
- Small businesses needing an all-in-one, easy-to-use HR software: It provides companies with a simple and affordable platform for managing employee HR processes—there are many canned reports you can run so that you don’t have to create from scratch. It also has a range of HR services, including payroll, onboarding, recruitment, time tracking, and performance appraisals.
- Office managers or executive assistants who are handling HR and payroll: It streamlines HR processes and integrates the different systems it offers, so you don’t have to enter the same data twice. It also gives each employee access to its mobile app, allowing them to view their employee information without having to go through you.
- Companies needing HR tools that supplement what they currently have: It can integrate with more than 50 third-party applications, most of which are HR solutions like recruitment, time tracking, training, and compensation systems. It also offers integration with communication and identity management tools such as Slack, Idaptive, OneLogin, and Okta. In addition, it has an open API.
When BambooHR Would Not Be a Good Fit
- Mom-and-pop companies looking for payroll software: You have to pay additional fees to access its payroll tool, which isn’t BambooHR’s software but rather TRAXPayroll’s, the company it has teamed up with. If you primarily need help with payroll, check out our top payroll software picks.
- Large businesses needing customized features and flexibility: BambooHR was built to fulfill the needs of small businesses, many of which are OK with canned reports and tools. To personalize certain reports, you’ll have to do manual entry; and some features may not be as flexible as you need, i.e., PTO (it can be challenging to fix inaccurate time entries). You might benefit more from integrating your system with more suitable software. Check out our article on payroll software integration for some ideas.
Looking for something different? Read our guide to the best HRIS/HRMS software for small businesses to find a solution that’s right for you.
|Ease of use||Pricing isn’t transparent|
|Simple yet intuitive interface||Lacks a payroll solution; access to its TRAXPayroll integration requires an additional fee|
|Good tool to streamline HR processes||Time tracking and performance management tools are paid add-ons|
|More than 50 integration options with open APIs||Phone support, advanced workflows, and custom access levels are available only in the highest tier|
BambooHR Pricing and Features
BambooHR has two plans: Essentials and Advantage. The pricing details for these aren’t available on its website, and you have to contact the provider to discuss your business’ requirements and request a quote. For an Advantage package that covers 15 employees, we were quoted a monthly fee of $8.25 per employee.
As for its add-on tools, the performance management module costs $5.25 per employee monthly, while its time tracking tool is priced at $3 per employee monthly. We were also quoted $75 plus $4.05 per employee monthly for the TRAXPayroll solution, as well as one-time fees for payroll implementation ($241.25) and “QuickStart Training” for new clients ($299).
HR Information System (HRIS)
Employee Directory and Org Chart
Employee/Manager Self Service
Workflows and Approvals
Email and phone support
With BambooHR’s suite of HR solutions, you can streamline and automate hiring, onboarding, and performance management processes while providing employees with self-service tools for updating personal information and tracking attendance-related requests. Let’s take a look at some of BambooHR’s important features.
You are granted access to a secure and centralized database that allows HR teams to manage employee data efficiently. Given that it integrates with BambooHR’s other modules, including its marketplace of third-party partner software, you need only to manage one database in which all employee information updates are shared across all solutions.
Applicant Tracking and Onboarding
BambooHR’s applicant tracking system (ATS) helps HR professionals find and hire the right talents. It includes collaboration tools that allow the hiring team to stay on top of the recruitment process, enabling timely communication between key stakeholders. Its pre-boarding and onboarding solutions also let users set up welcome emails and to-do checklists for new hires, including digitally sign electronic documents.
With its time-off management solution, your employees may easily file and monitor leave requests online. HR administrators can also set up several PTO types in BambooHR, from standard leaves (like vacation and sick leaves) to unlimited PTOs for a single team and custom time-off policies for specific individuals.
In addition, BambooHR has a “Who’s Out Calendar” to see employees on PTO easily. This also allows people managers to ensure that their department is adequately staffed during holidays.
Available as a paid add-on, BambooHR’s time tracking tool can capture employee clock-ins and outs, display time sheets, and calculate regular working and overtime hours for payroll reporting. It also comes with project tracking capabilities to help you log and monitor working hours for specific clients and tasks.
BambooHR’s performance management add-on includes online tools for creating and tracking employee work goals. It comes with automated reminders, notifications, and built-in reporting like talent management data and goals status reports.
Payroll and Payroll Tax Filing
Subscribing to BambooHR’s paid payroll add-on grants you access to its partner system, TRAXPayroll. Designed to process the salaries of US-based employees, TRAXPayroll comes with unlimited pay runs, digital paystubs, and comprehensive payroll reporting. It also offers full-service payroll tax filing for federal, local, and state taxes.
What’s also great about this integration is that you don’t have to manage employee data for two separate systems. TRAXPayroll automatically syncs with BambooHR, allowing it to seamlessly get essential payroll information such as personal staff data, direct deposit bank details, wages, and time in/out information.
Employee Engagement Tool
BambooHR’s employee satisfaction system combines Net Promoter Scores (NPSes) and intelligent feedback analysis methods. Aside from letting HR professionals measure staff engagement and better understand workforce issues, this can help you create employee programs to address problem areas.
Employee/Manager Self-Service and Mobile Apps
With its employee/manager self-service tool, your employees can view the company calendar, access the staff directory, check their personal information, file PTOs, and approve requests online. For your mobile employees, BambooHR has apps for iOS and Android devices that have the same functionalities as its self-service tool. HR teams can even send companywide communications through the provider’s mobile apps.
BambooHR Ease of Use
- Intuitive interface
- Employee self-service and mobile apps
- More than 50 integration options
- Standard and customizable workflows
- Library of webinars and how-to guides
BambooHR is easy to use and comes with a wide range of cloud-based solutions, including self-service tools, that allow you to manage essential HR processes more efficiently. With its intuitive and all-in-one HR platform, your HR team can spend more time on strategic business-related projects and less time handling day-to-day tasks.
The platform also comes with basic customization options. Aside from adding your company’s branding elements, BambooHR lets you create custom workflows and user access levels. Note, however, that these options are available only with the Advantage plan.
What’s also great about BambooHR is its marketplace of third-party partner systems, which consist mostly of HR-related solutions. With over 50 integration options, BambooHR can help you manage your employees well. For reference, here are some of its partner software:
- Applicant tracking systems: Greenhouse, Workable, BreezyHR, ApplicantPro, JazzHR, Lever, Jobvite, LinkedIn Talent Hub, and SmartRecruiters
- Assessment tools: Criteria Corp, imocha, and Qualified
- Background check solutions: GoodHire, Checkr, Universal Background Screening, and Backgrounds Online
- Job board sites: Glassdoor and Indeed
- Video interviewing tool: Jobma
- Learning and training software: Litmos, Northpass, TalentLMS, Absorb, Travitor, and Traliant
- Performance management systems: Lattice,15Five, Engagedly, 7Geese, GoalSpan, Primalogik, PerformYard, and PerformancePRO
- Recognition and reward tools: Bonusly, Gifted, Kudos, Applauz, Kazoo Recognition, and Reward Gateway
- Benefits administration solutions: Maxwell Health, Effortless Admin, PlanSource, and Benetrac
- Compensation software: Payfactors and PayScale
- Payroll systems: TRAXPayroll, Blue Marble Global Payroll, and CloudPay
- Time tracking and scheduling tools: Humanity, SwipeClock, Boomr, ClickTime, Deputy, MakeShift, stratustime, and Somroli
- Other business software: Slack, Okta, OneLogin, Idaptive, Zapier, OrgChart Now, Pingboard, and Orginio
Top BambooHR Alternatives
Best for: Small businesses wanting an all-in-one HR software
Best for: Multi-state employers needing integrated employee healthcare insurance
Best for: Startups (with up to five employees) that want free to use HR tools
Monthly fees from: $99 per employee
Monthly fees from: $10 per employee
Monthly fees from: Free (up to five employees); $1 per employee if more than five
If you’re not sure BambooHR is right for you, see how it compares with our top HR software for small businesses.
What Users Think About BambooHR
Many BambooHR users are happy about its intuitive and simple-to-use interface. They also like that they have access to several HR solutions—from PTO tracking to employee information management and self-service tools. On the other hand, some reviewers commented that its integration options and mobile app functionalities aren’t robust. Some even wished that it offered more customization options for its performance management module and reporting tools.
At the time of publication, BambooHR reviews earned the following scores on popular user review sites:
- Capterra: 4.5 out of 5 based on 1,193 reviews
- G2: 4.3 out of 5 based on 658 reviews
- Software Advice: 4.52 out of 5 based on 1,193 reviews
When reading through user reviews, I noticed some of these trends:
Users Don’t Like
Mobile app functionalities are limited
Simple to set up; implementation support includes extensive training for new clients
Integration choices and open API need to be improved
Feature-rich software with all of the essential HR tools that SMBs need
Customization options are not robust
SMBs that want an integrated cloud-based HR platform should consider BambooHR. Aside from its wide range of HR tools, it has a user-friendly platform that can help streamline and automate HR tasks. Its monthly fees, based on the quote we received, are also reasonably priced. However, you do need to pay extra if you want payroll, time tracking, and performance management tools.
If you want to learn more about BambooHR’s features, then sign up for a free trial—no credit card required.