The best employee time clocks have robust systems that support multiple clock-in/out options, use biometric or facial recognition technology, and include mobile apps with GPS-based clock-ins. Some go beyond clock-ins with scheduling and employee communications. These digital time clocks provide users with better time-tracking flexibility while offering more advanced features, such as customizable reports and project- or task-based time allocation.
The best nine for small businesses are:
- Homebase: Best overall for small businesses with only one location
- OnTheClock: Best for employee communications
- Deputy: Best for seasonal businesses or those with employees on standby
- busybusy: Best for field employees like construction workers
- Buddy Punch: Best for businesses trying to control time theft from buddy-punching or unauthorized overtime
- 7shifts: Best for restaurants
- When I Work: Best for growing and multilocation businesses
- Timelogix: Best for companies needing a wall-mounted biometric time clock
- uAttend DR2000: Best for businesses sharing employees across departments
A note about the time clocks on this list: We tried to distinguish between time clocks that allow employees to clock in and out for shifts and those that simply track time spent on a project. If you need time-tracking tools, consider our list of the best time-tracking software.
Employee Time Clocks Compared
Paid Plans Monthly Fees
Mobile App Rating
Built-in Employee Scheduling
1 location; max 20 employees
$24.95–$99.95 per location
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.8/5 on iOS
4.4/5 on Android
For 1-2 employees
$3.20–$3.50 per employee monthly
Computer, tablet, iPad (Fingerprint reader + $100)
4.2/5 on iPad
3.9/5 on Android
Fingerprint (costs extra), PIN, password
$3.50–$4.90 per user monthly ($25 per month minimum)
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.7/5 on iOS
3.5/5 on Android
Facial recognition and voice command clock ins/outs
Limited tools, unlimited users
$11.99–$17.99 per user monthly
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.2/5 on iOS
4.1/5 on Android
$3.49–$4.49 per user monthly + $19 base fee per month
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.9/5 on iOS
4.6/5 on Android
QR codes, 4-digit PIN codes, facial recognition, and username with password
w/ Pro plan
$34.99–$150 per location monthly
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.7/5 on iOS
4.5/5 on Android
Simple clock in
$4–$8 per user monthly
Computer, tablet, iPad
4.8/5 on iOS
4.7/5 on Android
$30–$150+ per month
Proprietary hardware ($199.99–$499)
2.8/5 on iOS
3.9/5 on Android
PIN code, fingerprint, facial recognition, and radio-frequency identification (RFID) card*
Proprietary hardware ($119–$399)
1.9/5 on iOS
3.2/5 on Android
PIN code, fingerprint, and RFID card
Homebase: Best Overall Employee Time Clock
- Free plan limited to one location and only up to 20 employees
- PIN with implementation does not always work
- Geolocation tracking, geofencing, paid time off (PTO) accrual tracking, and overtime alerts are only included in paid plans
- Software lags from time to time
What We Like
Homebase is the best time clock for small businesses, especially companies with one physical location needing a feature-rich online solution to help track employee time, and reduce scheduling errors. It provides free time clock software and employee time clock apps that work on computers, tablets, and smartphones. Apart from letting you create staff schedules and capture time entries, it offers team communication at no cost. Paid subscriptions include payroll integration, geofencing, overtime and late employee alerts, early clock-in prevention, and auto-scheduling.
Overall, Homebase earned a score of 4.56 out of 5 in our evaluation. It posted scores of 4 and above in most of our criteria, with perfect marks in attendance functions and reporting. It fell short in that it does not offer fingerprint or facial recognition, and had a lot of complaints this year about the app being glitchy and slow to load at times. However, users agreed it’s easy to use.
Homebase, like busybusy, 7shifts, OnTheClock, and Deputy, has a free plan. It works for one location and up to 20 employees but includes all features, including scheduling, team messaging, and cash advances, making it the best if you have a limited number of employees. It has three paid plans:
- Essentials ($24.95 per location, unlimited employees): Free plan plus advanced scheduling, advanced time tracking, team communication, payroll add-on capability
- Plus ($59.95 per location, unlimited employees): Essentials plan plus hiring, PTO and time-off controls, departments and permissions, and employee certification and performance notes
- All-in-one ($99.95 per location, unlimited employees): Plus plan plus onboarding, labor cost management, HR & compliance tools
For an additional $39 per month + $6 per employee, you can add Homebase payroll.
Since our last update: Homebase has changed the offerings in its free plan. Homebase has also redesigned its schedule module to improve user experience with dropdowns, shift colors, and more.
- Feature-rich free option: Homebase’s free plan is packed with features. You can create weekly schedules, capture and monitor employee attendance, store time sheets for 90 days, integrate with POS software, message team members in real time, and provide employees access to up to $400 of earned pay—provided you have only one business location. It’s the best free plan if you have one location and fewer than 20 workers.
- POS integrations: Even Homebase’s free plan integrates with point-of-sale (POS) systems, making it a great choice for retail.
- Efficient time and scheduling tools: Homebase’s online tools can help you streamline time tracking and scheduling processes. Its features include automated time sheets, daily labor reports, administrator alerts for late clock-ins and overtime, and a drag-and-drop schedule builder.
- Multiple job rates: If your employee works different jobs at different rates, Homebase can allocate hours by job and track employee time with multiple roles and wage rates.
- Compliance tools: Homebase can track PTO, send overtime alerts, and track breaks. However, its higher plans also alert you to changing federal and state laws and offer live HR assistance if you have questions. This is a bit like 7shifts, which also has state-specific compliance features.
- Basic HR tools: Homebase alone includes a range of HR tools. At its most basic, it lets you communicate with team members, but it also has onboarding, performance evaluation, certificate tracking, and more.
OnTheClock: Best for Employee Communication
- No offline mode
- Slightly higher learning curve
- Basic reports only
What We Like
OnTheClock is one of the most inexpensive time clocks for employees that works with salary and hourly employees. It tracks by job, position, or location clock-ins and includes employee communications.With one of the strongest communications tools we’ve seen, it’s an excellent choice for businesses that need a “paper trail” for actions accomplished on shifts or for deliverables to customers.
With a 4.46 out of 5, it had perfect scores for pricing, time and attendance features, and security tools. It fell short in popularity only because of a few complaints of the app glitching—its user score averaged 4.52 out of 5 over multiple third-party user review sites, however. It also lost a few points for ease of use because it lacks an offline mode.
Unlike most of the others on our list, OnTheClock offers only one plan with all features, with no minimums or base fees. Pricing is per person monthly, and the per-person price decreases the more employees you have. If you need a plan for just two people, OnTheClock is free. Educational institutions, government agencies, and nonprofits get discounts.
- 1–2 users: $0.00
- 3–10 users: $3.50
- 11–25 users: $3.45
- 26–50 users: $3.40
- 51–100 users: $3.35
- 101–200 users: $3.30
- 201–300 users: $3.25
- 301–400 users: $3.20
- 401 + users: Custom
Fingerprint readers cost about $100, plus an extra 50 cents/employee/month for those using it.
- Clock in by job, location, or position: Like Buddy Punch, you can clock in by job rather than position. It also has geofencing so you can ensure field workers are on-location before they clock in.
- Fingerprint clock-in: Rather than facial recognition, it uses fingerprints or employee numbers or names. This feature requires hardware and an extra fee, but can be applied to only those who use the fingerprint reader for check-in. (Timelogix and uAttend’s scanners are included in the hardware.)
- Communications: Use messaging to communicate with individuals or teams, create surveys to get important feedback, or ensure tasks are completed (like recurring training). You can also attach notes to the schedule, have employees add notes to their shift, and attach photos.
- Compliance checks: Like When I Work, OnTheClock lets you set time limits to prevent early clock-in. It also provides automated breaks and clock-out reminders.
- Job costing and payroll: While Homebase offers job costing in its highest plan, this tool is included with any OnTheClock plan. Even better, it lets you create Billable Reports. It also calculates gross payroll automatically and lets you integrate with several payroll software systems.
- Salaried hours tracking: Salary workers can use OnTheClock as well. This can be helpful for tracking salary-plus-overtime jobs or billable hours.
Deputy: Best for Seasonal Businesses
- Free plan limited to 100 shifts, US only
- Monthly minimum of $25
- Need Premium plan for geofencing tools
- Does not block early clock-in (manager can reject later on time sheet)
What We Like
Deputy ranks third for best time clock for small businesses because of its versatility of plans and international scope. We especially like the Flexi Weekly Plan for seasonal workers or businesses that have a week-on/week-off shift schedule. It’s easy to use and offers facial recognition as well as PIN codes for clock-ins, break reminders and verification, and wage calculations on the time sheets.
Deputy earned 4.39 out of 5 on our list. It lost points in pricing for requiring a minimum $25 monthly spend, but earned a perfect score for time and attendance tools and reporting, with advanced and custom report capabilities. It’s also easy to use and has a high average user review score.
Deputy has a simple free plan that lets you publish 100 shifts per month and approve 100 time sheets per month. It includes PTO management, a newsfeed, and 24/7 email support. Its paid plans are divided by scheduling, time & attendance, and a combination of the two
- Time & Attendance ($3.50 per user monthly): Free plan with unlimited timesheets, POS integration, tasking, performance, shift journals, custom timesheet fields, and payroll integration. Timeclock includes facial recognition and geofencing.
- Scheduling ($3.50 per user monthly): Free plan with unlimited shifts, auto-scheduling, POS integration, tasking, meal and break planning, SMS notifications, availability management, shift swap, and schedule templates.
- Premium ($4.90 per user monthly): Scheduling and Time & Attendance plans plus reports, shift engagement tracking
- Enterprise (Custom quote): Premium plan with single sign-on, advanced demand planning, advanced reporting, customizations, implementation and dedicated support, training, and department level procedures.
- Flexi Weekly Plan ($2.50 per active user per week + 50 cents per inactive user per week): Premium plan for use when half or more of your employees are off during any given week.
Deputy has a minimum monthly spend of $25 and offers special pricing for charities, nonprofits, and community organizations.
- Special plan for seasonal or rotating workforce: If you have big seasonal fluxes or a rotating schedule of week(s)-on/week(s)-off, Deputy might be a more cost-effective option. Rather than paying for all employees all the time, you pay only for active members, with the others in archive for easy reactivation. The Flexi plan includes both scheduling and time clock features. It’s unique to any plan we’ve researched.
- Voice-command clock-ins: Deputy allows employees to clock in with voice commands, something we did not find in other employee time clocks on our list.
- Employee communication: In addition to showing expected lunch and short breaks, Deputy also lets you add one-time or recurring task lists for employees to refer to and check off. Unlike Homebase or OnTheJob, however, it does not let you divide hours by task.
- Compliance tools: You can require employees to verify that they took their required breaks. It also lets you set up questions, such as for COVID precautions, in order to keep up with legal and health rules.
- Calculate wages: The time sheets allow you to calculate wages, including overtime and penalties. Most software on our list will require you to put the information into payroll software. Deputy integrates with multiple popular payroll software programs.
- HR tools: Deputy has a new HR product that includes hiring, onboarding, and document management tools. The price is to be determined, but contact Deputy if interested. Homebase, on the other hand, readily offers these tools in its higher plans.
- Multinational: Deputy works in over 90 countries. The mobile app and iPad/tablet kiosk can handle multiple languages. In fact, employees can select their language.
busybusy: Best for Employees in the Field
- No phone support
- No overtime alerts
- Standard reports only
What We Like
For workers on the move who may go from project to project—like plumbers, landscapers, or construction workers, busybusy offers a time clock and scheduling tools to make tracking time on site and on the job easier. In addition to strong geofenced clock-in tools that can include facial recognition, it also offers excellent means for communication (similar to OnTheClock, but more industry-specific). It offers billing capability, shift reports (like safety), timecard signatures in-app, and equipment tracking.
It earned 4.34 out of 5, with perfect scores for pricing, security, and popularity. Its reports aren’t as customizable as others on our list, and it lost points for not having phone support. While we found overtime rules tracking and calculations, we did not find an alert system, costing it a few points.
busybusy has a free plan with GPS time tracking, job costing, equipment tracking, and unlimited users. If you only need time tracking for jobs, it’s a better deal than Homebase, which has limits on people and location. It offers two paid plans, plus the ability to add payroll or integrations for an extra fee—Contact busybusy for the add-on prices.
- Free plan: GPS time tracking, job costing, equipment tracking, unlimited users
- Pro ($11.99 per user monthly): Free plan, plus GPS breadcrumbing, supervisor tools, safety reports, photos and notes, scheduling
- Premium ($17.99 per person monthly): Pro plan plus documents, daily project reports, progress tracking, checklists, team messages, Zapier for integrations
- GPS breadcrumbing: busybusy goes beyond the others on our list by not only allowing geofencing but by tracking locations of employees throughout the day. This makes it great for moving companies, supply runs, or home servicing companies. Also, while others can tell you who is on duty, busybusy gives you a map of everyone’s location as well.
- Offline mode: Away from Wi-Fi? Busybusy continues to track on the phone and uploads when a connection is available.
- Team clock: Supervisors can clock entire teams in and out, even for breaks and lunches.
- Daily reports: While OnTheClock has employee notes, busybusy allows for full daily construction reports. It automatically adds weather reports, lets you upload photos of progress or trouble areas, track hours and cost codes, list equipment, and record digital signatures.
- Safety reports: busybusy is the only time clock software on our list that also lets you file safety reports. This can include daily sign-offs of safety briefings to reduce liability or reporting injuries that happened on the job.
- Cost codes: While some of the software on our list, like Deputy, lets you create job codes, busybusy goes past that by attaching special instructions for the codes and adding colors for specific jobs to help keep your workers organized. Employees can switch between projects and cost codes.
- Equipment tracking: This is the only time clock software that also tracks equipment and operator time, a vital component of job costing.
Buddy Punch: Best for Preventing Time Theft
- Limited client billing capabilities
- No phone support
- $19 monthly flat rate plus by-user rate makes it expensive for only a few users
What we like:
Buddy Punch is the best employee time clock for businesses wanting to avoid time theft and buddy punching, but it’s an excellent time clock overall for features and ease of use. It lets employees clock in via QR code, and has facial recognition, passwords, and PINs to avoid buddy punching. It includes job tracking by department or customer, breaks, alerts, and more.
Buddy Punch earned 4.29 out of 5, with perfect scores for time and attendance, reporting, security, and popularity. It had the highest average user satisfaction score: 4.77 out of 5. It requires a monthly fee of $19 plus the per-user fee, which hurt it in pricing (along with not having a free plan). Meanwhile, the lack of live phone support took it down in ease of use, which was enough to knock it down in overall score.
Buddy Punch Pricing
All plans start with a $19 base fee, regardless of how many users you have. This can make it more expensive for very small businesses. However, the per-user prices are reasonable, and the software, robust.
- Standard ($3.49 per user monthly + $19 per month base fee): Unlimited administrators, basic GPS, time off tracking, time tracking, reports, alerts and reminders, payroll integrations, job tracking, break planning, multi-channel support.
- Pro ($4.49 per user monthly + $19 per month base fee): Standard plan plus shift trades, schedule templates and notifications, availability management, early/absent/late reporting
- Custom (Custom): Pro features plus API access and single sign-on
Buddy Punch Payroll can be added for $39 per month + $6 per user monthly and includes unlimited pay runs, tax forms, direct deposit, and employee onboarding.
Buddy Punch Features
- QR Code punch-in: Buddy Punch is the only time clock on the list to provide QR-code punch-in capabilities. Employees are given a unique QR code so that you can track them in real time or let them scan it for self-reporting.
- SMS clock-in: For employees who travel or work remotely, you can set up SMS clock-in via Zapier. Employees in the field can clock in by sending a text message to a specific number. Again, this is unique to the products on our list.
- Overtime notifications: If overtime is a concern, Buddy Punch can send email or mobile notifications to managers so that if an employee is nearing overtime for the week, you can adjust your schedule.
- Job codes: Like Homebase, you can assign job codes so that employees can clock in and out by job. Even more, it lets your employee designate their customer, to help with tracking billable hours.
- Multilocation tracking: While several software on our list can manage multiple locations, Buddy Punch lets employees track their locations so that if someone works in multiple offices, they can choose the office for that shift.
- Notifications: Buddy Punch provides notices for employees, managers, and admins that include time card changes, overtime alerts, and PTO requests and approvals.
- Geolocation tracking: Unlike OnTheClock, which has only geofencing, Buddy Punch includes GPS tracking. This is similar to busybusy, so you can track employees on the go.
7shifts: Best for Restaurants
- Plans are by location; can be expensive for small staffs
- Many of the features are in the higher plans
- Custom reports only in higher plans
What We Like
7shifts is the best time clock software for restaurants because of its shift-swapping capabilities, employee health checks, forecasting, tips tracking, and more. However, its compliance tools also make it good for industries hiring minors, who have more rules concerning breaks and work hours.
It earned 4.18 out of 5 on our list, with perfect scores in time and attendance tools and in popularity. It has the second-highest user approval score after Buddy Punch, earning a 4.68 out of 5. It’s one of the few with live phone support. However, it’s also one of the more expensive options, and many of its advanced features that others provide in lower plans, are with the higher plans (like task notes and compliance tools).
There are several plans from free to $150 per month per location. The prices depend on features, but the free plan and Entree plan have user limits.
- Comp (Free): One location, up to 30 users, includes mobile app, bulk editing, scheduling, shift pools, availability and time off requests, time clock and compliance, employee health checks, hiring tools, POS integration, team chat and announcements, engagement dashboard, reports, chat support
- Entree ($34.99 per location, up to 50 locations): Up to 30 users, includes Comp plan plus unlimited scheduling, shift notes, shift reminders, labor budgeting, time off approval and tracking, time punch editing, tips tracking, break tracking, customized employee health check, wage-based roles, announcement read receipts, phone support
- The Works ($76.99 per location, up to 50 locations): Unlimited employees, includes Entree plan plus scheduled breaks, department-based budgeting, geofencing, advanced time clock compliance, overtime, break, and punch alerts, state-based compliance tools, payroll integration, activity and manager logbooks, shift feedback and performance logs, punch audit reporting
- Gourmet ($150 per location, unlimited locations): Unlimited users, includes The Works plus dedicated account manager, operations overview, task checklists, machine-learning auto scheduler, employee onboarding
If you choose a lower plan than Gourmet but want to add some tools, you can add these:
- Task management (task checklists): $12.99 per location monthly
- Tip pooling: $24.99 per location monthly
- Operations Overview (track labor performance and engagement): $6.99 per location monthly
- Manager log book: $14.99 per location monthly
- Restaurant-specific tools: Integrations into 25+ POS systems, tip pooling and calculations, and specialized employee health checks make this a top choice for the restaurant industry. 7shifts also offers discounts to franchises.
- Clock-in limits: One unique feature 7shifts has is only allowing people who are scheduled to clock in, which can save you unbudgeted labor hours. It also had facial recognition and geofencing, and early clock-in prevention.
- Labor compliances: While most of the software on our list lets you schedule break reminders and offer overtime alerts, 7shifts goes further by including state compliance rules (with higher plans). This saves you from manually inputting rules. Minors are also flagged so managers can keep this in mind when scheduling.
- Communications: Like OnTheClock, you can contact people through the app, offer empty shifts, enable shift swap, and provide task notes. However, it also has a manager log book that will record tasks completed as well as any important shift notes.
- Alerts: Unlike busybusy, you get alerts for employees approaching overtime, not taking a required break, or missing a punch.
When I Work: Best for Growing Businesses & Multiple Locations
- No free plan
- No phone support
- No offline mode
What We Like
When I Work is a solid time clock app for employees. Its pricing structure makes it a good choice for growing companies and those with multiple locations, particularly with shift workers. It not only includes shift swapping and requests but allows employees to bid on popular shifts. The scheduling tool lets you optimize work schedules automatically. It offers facial recognition and can forbid early clock-in.
This time clock software earned 4.13 out of 5. Like most of the cloud-based time clocks on our list, it got a perfect 5 out of 5 on time and attendance tools, and its custom report capabilities earned it a perfect reporting score, too. However, pricing, security, and ease of use were all below 4. It’s a popular software, however, and users give it 4.52 out of 5 on average.
When I Work Pricing
When I Work lacks a free plan. For this, consider Homebase, Deputy, or OnTheClock as its closest competitors. You need to activate time and attendance to the scheduling plan, which increases the basic price. The prices listed here include that option.
- Standard with time and attendance ($4 per user monthly): Team messaging, availability management, time off management, document storage, SMS notifications, auto scheduling, labor planning, multiple schedules and locations, job sites, tags, shift swap and bidding, time sheets, overtime alerts, break management, geofencing, facial recognition, payroll integration, on-demand pay
- Advanced with time and attendance ($8 per user monthly): Standard plan plus advanced scheduling tools like labor sharing, shift reports, API access, absence tracking, custom reports
When I Work Features
- Clock-in tools: These compare well with the others on our list, like Homebase or Deputy, including geofencing and facial recognition. It alerts managers of missed clock-ins, something not found in busybusy, for example, and comes with PTO management.
- Prevent early clock-in: Like OnTheClock, When I Work lets you set rules to prevent early clock-ins.
- Labor costing: You can set different positions for each employee so that you can track hours and pay rates accordingly, making it easier to manage payroll.
- Employee shift communications: In addition to alerts like reminders to clock in or out, you can send team messages through the app or directly to individuals through SMS texting. This includes sending documents, such as training forms.
- Shift swaps: This is a strength for When I Work. While others, like 7shifts, allow employees to swap shifts, When I Work goes further with availability settings and shift bidding. Shift bidding lets multiple users express an interest in picking up a shift so that managers or individuals have a choice of replacements.
- Tasks: Employees can see shift task lists and check them off. Supervisors, meanwhile, can track progress.
- Advances on pay: Like Homebase and uAttend, When I Work has a program that lets employees request and receive advances on pay for hours they’ve already worked.
Timelogix: Best for Wall-mounted Time Clocks
- Limited integration options
- Occasional system glitches
- Customer support is unresponsive at times
What We Like
For businesses like manufacturing facilities and warehouses that prefer a physical employee time clock in lieu of a software app, Timelogix offers wall-mounted machines with flexible clock-in/out options. It supports several time entry types—from RFID cards and fingerprint scans to facial recognition and PIN codes. It also has simple cloud-based software for staff scheduling, online time sheet editing, and mobile apps with GPS clocking functionality. It can handle unlimited locations and administrators, plus you get unlimited support and data hosting.
Overall, Timelogix scored 3.8 out of 5 in our evaluation of best employee time clocks. It earned a perfect score in security and 3.94 out of 5 in time-tracking functionality, given its overtime and break-tracking tools, alerts, and multiple clock-in/out options to help prevent buddy punching and time theft. However, its limited report customizability and the lack of a free plan prevented it from ranking higher on this list.
Physical time clock: Timelogix TL200 costs $299.99; other Timelogix employee clocks range from $199.99 to $499.99. Compare this to the price of a tablet or iPad you might use for a kiosk.
Software: The time and attendance software is priced by the number of employees in groups of 10. Regardless, you get overtime calculations, real-time tracking, scheduling, an employee portal, customized overtime, and unlimited support. It allows for unlimited locations.
- 1–10 employees: $30 per month
- 11–20 employees: $60 per month
- 21–30 employees: $90 per month
- 31–40 employees: $120 per month
- 41–50 employees: $150 per month
- More than 50 employees: Contact Timelogix for a custom quote
- Multiple time clocks: Aside from time clock apps with geolocation features that work on iOS and Android devices, Timelogix offers physical time clocks, which can be mounted on walls. We found the Timelogix TL200 a good option for a reasonably-priced clock with smart card, fingerprint biometrics, and PIN code time capture capabilities.
- Offline mode: Its machines have built-in Wi-Fi, touch-screen displays, and an offline mode that saves time entries to its internal memory if the internet goes down and sends all the data to the software once the connection has been restored.
- Secure clock-in/out options: Unlike Homebase, which only accepts PIN code clock-ins/outs, Timelogix’s time clock machines support facial recognition, fingerprint scans, PIN codes, and RFID card taps. None of the cloud-based time clocks allow RFID clock-in.
- Time and attendance management: With Timelogix’s time and attendance software, you can view employee time entries in real time, edit electronic timesheets, set rules for overtime and breaks, and select the devices from which employees can clock in/out.
- Employee scheduling: In addition to creating employee work shifts, you can assign a project, job, or location to a schedule. Timelogix even lets you manage “out of shift” time, allowing you to approve or disapprove extra minutes that your staff worked before and after their scheduled shifts.
- Mobile app: Timelogix also offers a mobile app that integrates with the time clock software. It has geofencing, shift schedules, and timecard renewal.
uAttend DR2000: Best for Companies Sharing Employees Across Departments
- Connects only with QuickBooks Desktop
- Monthly subscription is more expensive compared to similar time clocks
- Occasional time clock and mobile app glitches
What We Like
uAttend offers wall-mounted employee time clocks that support multiple clock-in/out options. Your employees can even track inter-departmental jobs and submit department transfer requests directly from the unit, making it ideal for companies assigning employees to multiple departments throughout the day or pay period. Its JR2000 time clock can capture employee attendance via PIN code entries, biometric fingerprint scans, and RFID card taps. Its wide touch-screen display lets you and your employees easily see time clock details and set up system controls.
Scoring 3.31 out of 5 in our evaluation, uAttend scored 4.31 out of 5 for time and attendance functionalities. Its limited report customizability and higher monthly software fees caused its score to drop. Still, many users like that it is easy to set up and use with flexible clocking options and good customer support.
uAttend DR2000 Pricing
Since Our Last Update: uAttend has reduced the number of time clocks it sells and increased the price of the JR2000.
Physical time clock: The JR2000 costs $199; other uAttend time clocks cost anywhere from $299 to $399
Time and attendance software: The software, like Timelogix, is priced by the number of employees. It includes punch lockouts to enforce breaks, punch rounding, department transfers, overtime alerts, geofencing, PTO management, payroll exports, and scheduling.
- 1–9 employees: $22 per month
- 10–19 employees: $37 per month
- 20–49 employees: $65 per month
- 50–99 employees: $99 per month
- 100 or more employees: $129 per month
Add-ons: Unlike Timelogix, uAttend has some add-ons in case you need more functionality. This includes additional cloud storage, which Timelogix offers unlimited storage for free.
- Cloud account for additional time clocks: $10 per time clock monthly
- Additional administrator seat: $6 per seat monthly
- Data exports in formats other than CSV: $5 per month
uAttend DR2000 Features
- Multiple clock-in/out options: Its JR2000 model supports RFID, fingerprint, and PIN code time entries and connects via Wi-Fi or LAN. uAttend other time clocks support several clock-in/out options—from facial recognition to fingerprint scans.
- Health monitoring: The DR5000 includes a temperature reader and can deny clock-ins to employees running a temperature.
- Department transfers directly from the time clock: If you have employees who work across departments, they can track jobs and request department transfers directly from uAttend JR2000. None of the other employee time clock providers on this list have this functionality.
- PTO monitoring: Unlike Timelogix, uAttend monitors PTO accrual and time-off requests.
- Employee communications: Like several of the time clock apps on our list, uAttend lets employees send you notes or time-off requests from their app.
- EarlyPay: Like Homebase and When I Work, uAttend lets employees get their wages on demand through earlyPAY by Clair.
- Helpful setup wizard: uAttend’s time clock includes a self-guided setup wizard. The guide is intuitive and only requires an internet connection so that you can pair the device with your online uAttend account, set up the time zone, and then start using the time clock. Others on our list have a more complicated setup process, although all provide guides to get started.
How We Evaluated
Aside from pricing and ease of use, we looked for essential features like time capture options, break and PTO tracking, and reporting tools. Then, we rated each based on the following criteria:
20% of Overall Score
20% of Overall Score
The best employee time clock includes basic tools, such as exportable time data, multiple time clock types, break and PTO tracking, and administrator alerts. Plus, having access to mobile apps and a self-service portal is also ideal. Most earned perfect marks. Timelogix had the lowest score with 3.94 out of 5.
10% of Overall Score
10% of Overall Score
Aside from having access to standard and pre-built reports, users should be able to customize reports. Earning perfect scores were Buddy Punch, Deputy, Homebase, and When I Work. However, it should be noted that busybusy does offer several reports unique to the construction and home repair industries.
20% of Overall Score
Geofencing, geolocation tracking, and multiple clock-in/out options (such as fingerprint, badge, and pin code) are just some of the essential functionalities that we looked at. We also checked whether or not the software can set up approvals and limit early time-ins. Perfect scores went to Timelogix, Buddy Punch, and busybusy.
20% of Overall Score
How to Choose an Employee Time Clock
Choosing the best time clock for your small business doesn’t have to be difficult. Start by understanding what you want from the time clock software. Consider your business situation and ask these questions:
- Do you have a problem with early clock-ins? Most time clocks for employees can prevent this.
- Do you want to enforce manager approval of overtime? Some notify managers when someone is late clocking out while others ping the employee with a reminder.
- Does your state enforce breaks and lunches? Some time clocks let you set these rules.
- Do your people work outside of the office? Some time clocks have mobile apps with geofencing that lets employees punch in when they are on location.
- How important is it to integrate with your payroll software? The best cloud-based time clocks for small businesses include integrations with popular software, while others create CSV files you can upload. Meanwhile, the best time card machines let you download a file to upload into your payroll software.
- Do your employees need to track time to specific projects? While time tracking software is your better bet, there are some time clock software that include project management features.
Next, consider hardware. Most time clocks for small businesses operate from tablets—usually iPads. However, some require their own hardware. These cost $200–$500, depending on features, which is less than an iPad. However, they usually have less robust software.
Naturally, price is a consideration. Most come with monthly fees, especially if they have cloud-based software or mobile apps. Keep in mind, however, that you are paying for convenience—time clock software is usually more accurate, includes rules and reports that help you with compliance to state break laws, and makes it easier to create time sheets or integrate straight to payroll software.
Employee Time Clock Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The best time clock app does more than just allow your employees to clock in and out from their mobile devices—it will allow you to send and approve PTO requests, create schedules, post jobs, record expenses, and track locations. Our top picks include Homebase, Clockify, and When I Work. Learn more in our Best Employee Time Tracking Apps article.
While several time clocks have their own devices (on our list: Timelogix and uAttend), many will work using a tablet or even your employee’s mobile phone. These are usually cloud-based and come with additional software features.
Each time card machine or software has a unique way for your employees to clock in and out. The oldest models used time cards that literally punch in times. These still exist, but none made our list. The most convenient allow facial recognition, thumbprints, and/or a PIN code to clock in. In those cases, the employee simply follows the directions on the pad. Some have geofencing procedures which let the employee clock in on their mobile device provided they are in a certain area of the workplace, which is great for out-of-office workers like construction or catering.
All of the options we reviewed in this guide are great for helping business owners and their HR teams efficiently manage employees. They track time in and out, allow you to put that information into timecards for payroll, and prevent buddy punching. Some let you enforce breaks, communicate with employees through the clock, and more.
Our top pick for employee time clocks is Homebase, as it provides single-location businesses with a free online time clock to use that includes timekeeping, scheduling, and hiring tools. Start tracking your employees’ work time for free.