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September 3, 2010

The Top Time Tracking Tools to Use for Outsourcing Your Web Development

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Outsourcing is a valuable tool if you hope to succeed as a small business online. The simple reason behind this is that outsourcing to trusted freelancers will cut down dramatically on labor costs, leaving you the extra time and money to better spend in promoting your business through marketing and product development.

Of course, you must make wise decisions as an online company when it comes to outsourcing by using outsourced employees for the more menial tasks, like writing content, administration, web development, link building, and blog management, while leaving the more important projects for yourself and your top staff members, like market research, managing social media profiles, and networking with other companies in your niche.

Once you have hired several freelancers as your outsourced staff, using the best tools will cut down on serious stress, disorganization, and potential pitfalls within any project that you embark on. In fact, it is not recommended to outsource without using these time tracking tools under any circumstance, or you could risk long-term problems in the productivity and success of your company.

  • RescueTime: RescueTime is an ideal tool for outsourcing that helps you to control and better understand how your outsourced staff spends their attention and time. One of the best portions of this tool is that it does not require any data entry, and all you have to do is install a small application that will track what websites and software are being used by your employees. This is best to manage a team of several people, especially if they are not working in a physical office with you. This tool alone will keep your staff accountable for their time and work within any project that you hire them for.
  • ClockingIt: This tool is a free hosting application that will help you to keep track of time and tasks for any freelance project. ClockingIt offers project management features so that you can plan, see the project schedule, and know if any outsourced employees have fallen behind. The Time Tracking alone is a valuable feature that will give you reports to offer to your clients on which tasks were completed within a project in a certain amount of time.
  • BaseCamp: BaseCamp is helpful software for outsourcing to several employees, which will offer features like web based documents, milestone management, to-do lists, time tracking, file sharing, and a messaging system. This tool is, in fact, perfect for outsourcing to people all over the country or outside of the country so that they can collaborate, communicate, and upload their work within a project for further editing or feedback.
  • ProjectPier: This is a free PHP application that is used for managing teams and projects with a user-friendly web interface. This tool needs to be downloaded and installed into your own server, and it will help your staff collaborate, facilitate communication, and complete tasks in an organized manner as an outsourced team. For any small businesses starting out in outsourcing, this is an invaluable free tool that will give you the freedom to manage several employees within other areas of the country.
  • ActiveCollab: ActiveCollab is fantastic project management software that allows you to collaborate within your own server or local network. You can work with your own staff and outsourced employees in a simple environment that will help you control and manage all project data. Some of the features of ActiveCollab include tracking progress on projects, assigning tasks, team communication, e-mail support, shared files, notifications, time trackers, milestone management, and the ability to invite new freelance employees to a project.

The truth is that as a small business, there are no better tools that you can use to manage freelance or outsourced employees. Outsourcing has its own slew of benefits when done properly, and these tools will make the process much more organized so that you can delay or even prevent using a physical staff for years into the future. Speaking of future, outsourcing is truly a modern concept that is becoming more and more popular as small businesses turn to freelancers online for many of their day-to-day tasks and support. In the same manner, numerous skilled professionals are turning to freelance careers in work-for-hire so that they can outsource to online companies based on their specific skills and qualifications.

With the multitude of skilled professionals available for outsourcing, this is the perfect resource to enhance the success and productivity of your small online business!


Nitin has been a full time blogger for over three years. These days he is busy with his outsourcing provider venture – Offshore Ally, a full time virtual assistant company. His team of seo assistants are trained on most blogging and internet marketing related jobs, so if you are looking for any help then its the right place to get you started. You can contact him on his website or catch up with him on his twitter profile – http://twitter.com/offshoreally.

24 Responses to “The Top Time Tracking Tools to Use for Outsourcing Your Web Development

    avatar John says:

    Also take a look at Intervals for time tracking. It’s supports international locales and is great for outsourcing web development.

    If you trust your outsource staff and they deliver the work well, you don’t really need to track them, right? I mean what if they use time in Social Media but they send very good results right on time, that is alright.

    @John, I have seen references of interval at other places too and it is on my to-do list.

    @agent, Not all kind of tasks are result dependent and majority of the top level companies our billed on time usage as compared to results. If you really want to build your own team (as against a provider) you got to think in terms of time based billing. It is hard at start but has better long term results.

    avatar Paulomunky says:

    Basecamp is great for collaborative working. I would also check out a bit of online time tracking software called 1DayLater if you get the chance – http://1daylater.com – it’s a good way to keep a log of the total number of hours spent on a project and is a simple to use tool compared to most.

    avatar Jenn says:

    Another great one out there is Grindstone…very user-friendly…check it out 😀
    http://www.epiforge.com/Grindstone2/

    avatar Jack says:

    I need to mention free online time tracker MrTickTock available at http://mrticktock.com (disclaimer: I’m an author). It is simple, fast and secure web based system to track employee time – good choice for freelancers and small companies.

    MrTickTock is being actively developed so you can expect several new features (including vacation tracking) and improved UX in the nearest future.

    avatar Leo G. says:

    I want to mention Worksnaps (http://www.worksnaps.net). It is a unique service that is very much suitable for freelancing work. It automatically captures the time you spend with work evidences to prove your work. You can show your time and work evidences to your client for him to verify. It facilitates more accurate billing and reduce any potential contention. I believe that it is a better solution if you bill your clients based on hours.

    avatar Jack says:

    MrTickTock 1.0 has just been released. 

    We improved UX significantly, mostly on the time sheet page. We use AJAX to make interaction with the page very natural. Time entries are saved automatically so there is no need for Save button and no chance to loose unsaved time entries. 
    It contains several other improvements which you may like. 

    The next release will bring vacation tracking.

    avatar Vinay says:

    Hi Nitin,
    Have a look at Contrich. It is not a time tracking tool but can be very effective in outsourcing your “Web Content Writing Jobs”.

    With features like inline content editing, content review, automatic page verification and much more, it can prove to be a handy tool to do collaborative content development.

    avatar April says:

    Freckle is the ideal time tracking tool for soloists and small teams.
    If what you are looking for is a tool that has user friendly features, then you should check it out at http://letsfreckle.com.

    avatar Kent says:

    There are so many time tracking tools that can be use all over the internet. It is just depends on what you need most and what you desire to track. Time tracking tools helps you track time on how you spend it on activities. Using this tool it can help improve productivity. You can also check this article that discusses comparative reports about time tracking tools and its features. It can also help determine what is a good tool to use in time tracking.

    avatar Randy Garcia says:

    Great topic and I have to just remind myself that I actually did try using time doctor’s tracking software like you suggested in this post and my site wallstreetgenerators.com was having a minor glitch with the template being out of order so I have to now get an expert site developer to fix it. I heard it was good so once this is fixed I’ll keep you updated on the results. Thanks.

    avatar anna says:

    @Kent very nice and detailed comparison! Now I’m wondering if I can find a similar one but for more time tracking tools 😉
    At work I use Timetrack – it’s a desktop app, you can download it from http://www.timetrack.eu. I think it’s also worth checking – very simple and user-friendly layout, available for windows, linux, mac and for mobile phones also.

    avatar Kelly says:

    Hours Tracking is another good option. Super simple to use and much more affordable than most team-based solutions at just $1/user/month. Worth a look – we couldn’t live with out. http://hourstracking.com

    avatar Vincent Churchil says:

    Its good to see so many options for time tracking, at the same time, I would love to share one more. That would be Replicon timekeeping software.

    avatar Dmitry says:

    Here is one more free time tracking system http://projectsputnik.com We like ability of tracking actual worked time along with billed time and comparing these hours.

    avatar Bruce says:

    I prefer tools that include time tracking and project management features such as http://www.projectmanager.com

    avatar Tom Lavent says:

    We use http://process.st and rescue time in our company. I am thinking of looking at something to track screens too however.

    avatar Geo Cook says:

    Another tool for online time tracking is proofhub. Take a look at http://www.proofhub.com

    avatar chaitali says:

    Happy to find so many great apps but still I find Replicon’s online time management solution missing from this useful list of tools.

    avatar Semina says:

    In order to have an efficient remote collaboration, every business should have the right software to facilitate it. Comidor is a cloud-based collaboration platform which offers everything a business needs not only regarding collaboration but also Project Management, CRM, Finance and Business Intelligence. To check it out by yourself visit comidor.com and try its free demo version!

    avatar Kevin Peter says:

    Appointment schedules, phone calls, paperwork, emails, text messages and list goes on, something which are addressed almost immediately alongside the actual work. Hence, we delegate, outsource tasks, plann a to-do lists and prioritize on the goal focused. A time tracking tool does the job for us now!

    avatar Kim Marfil says:

    Thanks for sharing! I would also suggest you add Hubstaff. I really find their time tracking service really great. you can check them at hubstaff.com

    There are such a large amount of time tracking tools that can be use all over the internet. It really depends on what you want or need most and what you desire to track. Time tracking tools helps with the ability for you track time on how you spend it on activities. Really great article though, really impressed. Thanks Nitin.

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