Where did the time go?
This week we look at something more generally useful: time tracking tools. Less strictly development, and more productivity. But what developer doesn’t want to be more productive. Let me know if there are any other service types you want me to explore.
How do you record the time it takes you to search for the best time tracker tool? It was questions like this running through my head as I was busy looking into finding the best time tracking tool for my own needs recently. And as I was instinctively looking for free options, I thought that this is the type of tool that can be very useful for developers.
Maybe as a tool to allocate work to different clients for billing purposes as a freelancer or working at an agency. Or perhaps you just want to find out how much time you are spending on your personal projects. Whatever your reason, there are a number of options for tracking your time without breaking the bank.
As mentioned, some of these tools offer extra functionality like billing and invoicing, but I’m not specifically looking for that functionality this issue. One thing that you may want to look into is how well the service integrates with your workflow, either into existing tools, or even just with apps for your platforms.
Clockify was started by a company was thought it was paying way too much for time tracking and so decided to create their own. They offer it for free with as many users and projects as desired. And if you want some of their advanced features for you business, then it is priced as a flat monthly fee, not per user, which is very reasonable.
Toggl is very similar to Clockify, which makes me wonder if this was the tool they felt they were paying too much for. Might be as the costs are pretty high unless you have five or fewer team members, and then it is free. The biggest advantage I can see for using Toggl is the large number of integrations it has with other tools and services.
TMetric is a service created by the folks at Devart who make a number of software development and database tools. Again it was created to scratch an internal itch. Like Toggl, it is free up to five users, with a reduced set of features, although still perfect as a personal time tracker. However, once you get beyond that, the cost is much more reasonable.