The 8 Best Time and Attendance Systems – 2021 Review

Want to jump straight to the answer? The best time and attendance system for most people is definitely Rippling.

Time and attendance systems lets you track employee hours and manage pay—which is crucial for every business.

The best time and attendance systems are simple to implement and manage. Your employees will always be compensated appropriately for their work while eliminating bottlenecks in payroll.

That’s why good time and attendance systems integrate popular online payroll services.

If your current system is inaccurate or outdated, you could be costing your business tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

So if you need an updated time system, you’ve come to the right place.

No matter what type of business you have or what industry you’re in, this guide will help you find the best time tracking and attendance system for your company.

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The 8 Best Time and Attendance Systems of 2021

There are a ton of different time and attendance trackers out there. Some are good, while others are not so great. But these eight systems stand out above the rest:

  1. Rippling — Best for running payroll in two minutes or less
  2. TSheets — Best for remote workers and QuickBooks integration
  3. TimeClock Plus — Best for large businesses and secured access control
  4. Stratustime — Best cloud-based software for small businesses
  5. Kronos — Workforce ready product suites for small to midsize businesses
  6. uAttend — Best for very small businesses
  7. iSolved Time — Best  for growing businesses
  8. OnTheClock — Best for businesses with regular service calls

I’ll give you an in-depth review of each option below. We’ll discuss the top features, benefits, costs, and other considerations to give you the information needed to make a decision.

Best Time and Attendance Systems Reviews

#1 – Rippling — Best for Running Payroll in Two Minutes or Less

  • Built-in payroll solution
  • Create custom workflows
  • Potent automation features
  • Starts at $8/employee per month

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If you already have payroll software in place that you love, you’re looking for a time and attendance solution that integrates with it seamlessly. Otherwise, you’ll get frustrated with manual data entry or messy or incomplete importing from your time tracking tool.

But what if you’re thinking, “Well, I could use better payroll software too.”

Enter Rippling.

With it you get top-of-the-line time tracking software that is built to streamline your workload and automate routine actions. It’s incredibly easy to set up automated workflows (say, for a simple example, if an employee works over eight hours and incurs an overtime rate) and customize them with simple-to-learn triggers and logic.

But what really grabs you is how much easier Rippling’s time and attendance system makes running your payroll.

With the intelligent technology behind the platform, you can run your payroll in as little as 90 seconds. With no importing/exporting of spreadsheets or .csv files, Rippling ports the hours logged over to its payroll module and takes it from there.

It smartly factors in deductions, taxes, variable pay rates, and more. All that’s left for you to do is review and approve and, voila, payroll is taken care of.

The combination of payroll and time and attendance tracking in Rippling means you get everything you need from both, including:

  • Automatic tax, employee, and labor compliance
  • Automatic tax filings
  • Global payments to employees and contractors
  • PTO tracking
  • Custom reporting
  • Geolocated, QR code-based, and selfie clock-in

And, you get all the essentials of time tracking software. Employees can clock in and out using a tablet, the Rippling app, or through their computer.  You get to review and approve hours worked and assistance with meeting labor law regulations on breaks and overtime. And, with that perfect payroll integration, you get clear, real-time insight into labor costs.

Rippling offers custom pricing to its clients, depending on what combination of Rippling services they need. Beyond payroll and time tracking, there are also solutions for benefits administration, recruiting, and internal IT management.

Pricing starts at $8/user per month. Reach out to Rippling today for a free custom quote for using their time tracking software, payroll, or more.

#2 – TSheets — Best for Remote Workers and QuickBooks Integration

  • Plans start at $28/month
  • Time tracking on any device
  • Employee scheduling
  • QuickBooks integration

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TSheets ranked high on our list of the best employee scheduling software. So it’s no surprise to see them at the top of this guide.

TSheets is also a Quickbooks company — so you might recognize them already.

With TSheets, your employees clock-in from anywhere using the mobile timesheet app. The app will track time even if WiFi and cell service is unavailable.

You can leverage geofencing technology to draw a virtual radius around your business or job site. This allows you to make sure your employees are where they need to be to get the job done.

As I’ve already alluded to, the employee scheduling features are exceptional as well. This is an added bonus that comes standard with your time and attendance system.

For those of you who want a more traditional time clock system, where your staff and clock in and clock out on the same device, you can use the TSheets Clock Kiosk. The kiosk works on any tablet or computer with a connection to the Internet.

Each employee has a unique 4-digit pin. The system also has a biometric facial recognition tool to prevent the “buddy punching” system.

Here’s a quick comparison of the two plans and pricing options for TSheets:

Premium — $20 base fee + $8 per user per month

  • Time tracking on any device
  • Mobile app with GPS capability
  • Payroll and invoicing
  • QuickBooks integration
  • Employee scheduling
  • Real-time reporting
  • Time clock kiosk (including facial recognition)

Elite — $40 base fee + $10 per user per month

  • All Premium features
  • Timesheet signatures
  • Geofencing
  • Project activity feed and estimates
  • Track project progress

Both plans are available for a 14-day trial for any business that wants to test them out.

I’d recommend TSheets to any business that wants to a time and attendance system to simplify their payroll process. TSheets integrates seamlessly with QuickBooks, Gusto, Square, Expensify, Xero, and other popular solutions.

#3 – TimeClock Plus — Best for Large Businesses and Secured Access Control

  • Customized pricing
  • Wide range of time clocks
  • Fully customizable
  • Top of the line equipment

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TimeClock Plus gives you great time tracking solutions at an affordable cost.

Their hardware is top of the line. You can rest easy knowing their features and tools are up to snuff.

Depending on your business type, TimeClock Plus has a wide range of time clocks for you to consider:

  • Barcode clocks — Employees scan their badges to clock in and out
  • Biometric clocks — Fingerprint scanners and hand scanners
  • Magnetic swipe clocks — Can be used with pre-existing magstripe cards
  • PIN entry clocks — Employees clock in and out using their unique PINs
  • Proximity clocks — To ensure maximum speed and efficiency
  • Web clock — For online time keeping

In addition to using advanced equipment for tracking time and attendance, TimeClock Plus doubles as a security feature. You’ll have the option to configure select equipment with your door locks to prevent unauthorized access to buildings, rooms, or any other entrance with a locked door.

This type of system is best for larger organizations with complex security needs. Most small business owners won’t need employees to scan a fingerprint to enter rooms throughout the building.

TimeClock Plus systems are fully customizable.

It has built-in absence management tools and integrates with your employee scheduling software as well. Alternatively, you can use the TimeClock Plus workforce scheduling system if you don’t have one already.

TimeClock Plus has more than 30 years of experience providing services to businesses. They provide top of the line equipment for every time and attendance system.

While these time clocks might sound complex, TimeClock Plus makes the process easy for you.

You’ll have a consultation with an advisor to find the best solution for your business. They’ll set up the system for you and even train your supervisors and employees on how to use it.

As a fully-customized solution, there are no prices available online. Although you can expect to pay top dollar for advanced equipment like biometrics that syncs with your security system.

#4 – Stratustime — Best Cloud-Based System for Small Businesses

  • Starts at $4/mo per employee
  • Access on any device
  • Works with 60+ payroll systems
  • Cloud-based and easy to use

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Stratustime is a cloud-based time and attendance software from Nettime Solutions.

The offer a simple yet intuitive way for employees to clock in, clock out, and request time off.

It’s incredibly simple for anyone to use. Mangers, employees, and even payroll staff benefit from Stratustime.

Stratustime is flexible, offering plans and services for a company of any size. This means that it can grow with your business as you scale and add new employees.

It also integrates with 60+ payroll systems to ensure a streamlined process through each HR component.

As a cloud-based system, it can be accessed on any device. From smartphones to a computer in the office, Stratustime is available 24/7.

Some of the top features of Stratustime by Nettime Solutions include:

  • Ability to clock in or clock out from anywhere
  • Intuitive schedule views
  • Hour tracking
  • PTO accruals
  • Time off requests
  • Sick time
  • Simple manager approvals
  • Employee scheduling tools
  • Time forecasting
  • Alerts
  • Geofencing
  • ACA compliance

While the exact prices and plans aren’t available on the website, Stratustime is very affordable. This is another reason why it’s a top choice for small businesses.

Monthly rates start as low as $4 per employee. There are no long term contracts, so you can cancel at any time if you’re unhappy (which probably won’t happen).

Using a cloud-based software like Stratustime means you won’t have any complicated equipment installations or troubleshooting problems. The software lives in the cloud, so it can be up and running in minutes.

Existing businesses using Stratustime have nothing but good things to say about the software. For smaller organizations with one location, multiple locations, and remote employees, Stratustime is an excellent choice for your time and attendance system.

#5 – Kronos — Best for Small to Midsize Businesses

  • Industry-specific solutions
  • Safe, secure, and reliable
  • Automation tools
  • Real-time data & visibility reports

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Kronos has one of the most extensive time and attendance systems on the market today for small and medium-sized businesses.

They provide industry-specific solutions for a wide range of business needs.

In addition to time and attendance systems, Kronos has workforce management tools, employee scheduling software, absence management, labor activities, and analytics tools.

Common industries that use Kronos for time and attendance management include:

  • Health care
  • Retail
  • Manufacturing
  • Higher education
  • State and government
  • Contract services
  • Banking
  • Police and corrections
  • Distribution

What makes Kronos unique is the way that they provide business solutions. They have several different product suites to accommodate the needs of your organization.

Here’s a quick overview of each solution:

Workforce Dimensions Time Keeping

  • Track and manage employee time and attendance
  • Separate tools for hourly and salaried employees
  • Real-time data and visibility reports
  • Automation tools to eliminate manual admin processes

Workforce Ready Time Keeping

  • Flexible pay rules to track and manage labor costs
  • Manager and employee self-service tools
  • Multiple collection options (including Kronos time clock, web, and mobile app)
  • Enforce attendance policy with tracking tools

Workforce Dimensions Data Collection

  • Use data to power your management
  • Data collection using handheld devices, phone access, badge and biometrics
  • Devices for multiple environments and universal device manager
  • Streamlined data flow

Workforce Ready Data Collection

  • Kronos InTouch time clock (slim and modern time clock hardware)
  • Clock in and out with finger, proximity, or badge swipe
  • Web entry clock in and out
  • Mobile app for remote workers with geographic punch restrictions

You can get a product suite for practically anything. Some are more complex than others. It all depends on what your business is looking for.

If you’re a bigger company, though, Kronos is a little tougher to scale. However, it’s perfect for small to mid sized companies looking to keep an eye on time and attendance.

Regardless of the solution you choose, Kronos systems are safe, secure, modern, and reliable. Contact their sales team to request a quote and schedule a consultation.

#6 – uAttend — Best for Very Small Businesses

  • Powerful, reliable, & affordable
  • Web and mobile app access
  • Multiple time clock options
  • Connected to the cloud

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uAttend is a simple way to track time and attendance at your business. It’s a powerful, reliable, and affordable alternative to traditional time clocks.

With its cloud-based software, you’ll also have web access and mobile app access to the system. This is an ideal feature for your remote workforce. You can even set up geofencing functionality to restrict punches to designated locations.

The web dashboard is the perfect way for managers to see everything at a glance. You’ll be able to see who’s working, who missed a punch, and dozens of other reports.

Since this solution is web-based, you won’t have to download any software, and it can be accessed from anywhere. Even if you’re away from the office you’ll know exactly what’s going on with your staff at all times.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the popular time clocks and hardware offered by uAttend:

  • RFID Card LAN Time Clock — $119
  • Fingerprint LAN Time Clock — $149
  • Touch Tablet Wifi Time Clock — $179
  • RFID Card Wifi Time Clock — $219
  • Fingerprint Wifi Time Clock — $249
  • Facial Recognition LAN Time Clock — $259

Depending on your needs, you can get a time clock for somewhere in the $120 to $260 range. This is extremely affordable, even for very small businesses.

In addition to the time clocks, you can purchase RFID cards and key fobs from uAttend as well.

All of the time clocks come with a monthly subscription based on the number of employees you have. The clocks won’t work without a subscription. All of the prices are transparent.

  • 1-9 employees — $20 per month
  • 10-19 employees — $34 per month
  • 20-49 employees — $59 per month
  • 50-99 employees — $94 per month
  • 100+ employees — $119 per month

While uAttend does have plans to accommodate larger organizations, I’d definitely recommend it to those of you who have a smaller operation. It’s an ideal solution for businesses that fall within those first two tiers of up to 19 employees. Beyond that, I’d look elsewhere.

#7 – iSolved Time — Best for Growing Businesses

  • All-in-one solution
  • Extremely flexible options
  • Cloud-based system
  • Employee scheduling tools

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iSolved Time is another all-in-one solution for time and attendance. It’s a simple way for managers, supervisors, business owners, and employees to manage time tracking.

They offer a wide variety of solutions including physical time clocks, a mobile app for time tracking, employee self-service tools, and a combination of these offerings.

Setting up your new system from iSolved Time is quick and easy. You’ll also have access to a wide range of training options, so you know the ins and outs of the solution.

Like many other choices on our list, iSolved Time is a cloud-based system. You’ll have the option to add physical time clocks on-site, but you can access information from anywhere with an Internet connection 24/7.

Here are some of the top features and benefits of the iSolved Time software:

  • Geofencing capability
  • Employee scheduling tools
  • Ability to accommodate remote employees, multiple worksites and locations
  • Time management tools
  • Choice of time collection methods (virtual clock, physical, mobile app)
  • Sophisticated HR integration

I like iSolved Time because they have the features and capabilities to accommodate any business size. That’s why it’s a top solution for those of you with growing businesses.

As your company scales and you continue to add new employees to your team or multiple locations, iSolved Time has the capacity to grow with you.

#8 – OnTheClock — Best for Businesses with Regular Service Calls

  • Thorough GPS tracking
  • Can try out for free
  • Integration w/ major payroll software
  • Perfect for field service

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A service company has a wider range of needs from time and attendance tracking software than most others. Whether you’re a construction operation, an IT firm, an insurance company, or anything else where you’re dispatching employees constantly throughout the day, you’re going to find the features you need in OnTheClock.

Whereas many other time tracking solutions allow for GPS tagging on clock-ins, few give you full visibility into where your techs or reps are in real-time and where they’ve been throughout the workday.

OnTheClock’s GPS time clock allows your workers to check in on their own mobile device or an approved device upon arriving and leaving each job site.

But it’s the real-time GPS tracking that goes the extra mile (without overstepping into invading worker privacy). In the OnTheClock interface, you can see at a glance who’s where they’re supposed to be and who isn’t. And, with the breadcrumb feature, you can also see if workers are sticking to their schedule and staying at the job site when they’re supposed to.

You can also set up geofencing to make sure employees only clock in when they’re actually present at the location and drop pins for punch-in spots for when jobs are more remote or in between sites.

Plus, with custom-set employee roles, you can make it easier to switch between jobs without clocking out for your team members who wear many hats when out in the field.

Beyond those key features for organization that regularly send employees out into the field, such as automatic PTO and overtime tracking, employee requests within the platform and app, scheduling, and project cost and invoicing assistance.

OnTheClock also integrates fantastically with all the big payroll platforms out there, such as ADP, Quickbooks, Gusto, Paychex, and more.

Pricing is wonderfully straightforward. With no contact, no limitations on features, and no base monthly fee, you simply pay for the number of employees you have as active users on OnTheClock.

For just one or two employees, it’s completely free (which also can function as a free trial for test driving the platform out). From there it scales down, starting at $3/employee per month:

  • 3-10 employees: $3/employee per month (e.g. five employees = $15/month)
  • 11-25 employees: $2.95/employee per month
  • 26-50 employees: $2.90/employee per month
  • 51-100 employees: $2.85/employee per month

This continues all the way up to 301-400 users ($2.70/employee per month). Custom pricing is available for teams larger than that.

Get started with OnTheClock by trying it for free today.

How to Choose the Best Time and Attendance System For Your Business

Now the best part: it’s time to choose a good time and attendance system.

Not sure how to choose? Don’t worry. Just follow our methodology to narrow down your options.

This is the same rubric we used when determining this list. I’ll describe the features that you need to look out for while you’re browsing.

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Hardware

The very first thing you need to do is determine if you want physical hardware associated with your time and attendance system.

For those of you who are already using punch cards, a modern time clock is a viable replacement. I’d recommend this for businesses where the majority of employees work on-site at the same location. Punching in and out as they enter and exit makes the most sense.

For those of you with smaller teams or lots of remote or mobile workers, hardware won’t be necessary. You can find a time tracking system with a mobile app for managing everything on the go. There are also web-based solutions that don’t require hardware either.

Punch Method

The punch method will obviously depend on if you’re using hardware or not. But there are still variations with or without physical equipment.

For example, mobile app punching can be managed using geofencing technology. Your staff will only be able to clock in if they enter the designed location for a job site.

When it comes to in-person clock-ins and outs, there are time clocks that work with PINs, RFID cards, fingerprints, hand prints, facial recognition, and more.

A small coffee shop probably won’t need facial recognition or other biometrics as the punch method, but a sophisticated business with advanced security needs would benefit from this feature.

Integrations

Your new time and attendance system should do more than just track time. It should integrate with other tools that you’re using to minimize manual administrative tasks.

Look for a solution that integrates with your employee scheduling software or payroll system. Some of the options on our list have these features built-in.

Business Size

A startup team of four and mid-market companies with 200 employees will not have the same time and attendance needs. It’s important to find a solution that works well for the size of your organization.

Lots must be taken into consideration here. Some systems charge you based on the size of your staff. You could even incur additional costs for things like key FOBs and ID cards.

If you currently have a smaller business now, make sure you choose a system that can scale with you as your business grows. That way, you won’t have to switch systems as you hire additional employees or open up new locations.

Conclusion

What’s the best time and attendance system on the market? There are six that stand out above the rest.

If you’re already using QuickBooks or have a large roster of remote workers, TSheets is the best option for you.

If you want to get payroll and time tracking handled in one solution, go with Rippling.

There’s one name that stands out above the rest for large businesses. With TimeClock Plus you get all the features you’ll need, including secured access control.

Small to large businesses that send employees out on service calls or into field work will benefit greatly from choosing OnTheClock.

Small businesses have a wide array of time and attendance system options.

The best overall for smaller operations is Stratustime. If you’re an SMB who needs a solution ready to go, go with Kronos. And if you’re small but on the verge of serious growth, iSolved Time is a great solution that will scale with you.

On the other end, microbusinesses and other really small operations will find just what they need in uAttend.

The best option for you will vary based on your needs and the factors I’ve discussed in this guide. But I’m confident that you can find a solution with the criteria and reviews above.

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