1. Apploye - The Best Time Tracking App for Independent Contractors
Apploye is the ultimate time tracking app made solely for independent contractors, and freelancers. It offers all the essential time tracking features and more.
Essential time tracking features
Time tracking is super easy with Apploye. There is also options for detecting idle time and Pomodoro break timer.
Online timesheet for recording the working hours
Check the daily or custom timesheet to know the tracked time. You can visualize your activities for specific projects and tasks. The timesheet app also provides weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly timesheets.
Project & task management, with budgeting
Apploye tracks all the billable and non-billable hours of the projects and tasks. It helps to set up your project billing and budget options.
Random screenshots and Activity
Time tracking with screenshots and apps & URL usage tracking make verifying work very easy. Activity measurement (based on keyboard and mouse movement) can also be useful in work.
Payroll and Invoices
Set payroll for hourly payments, or even one-time payments. You can also send invoice to clients right from the web app, based on the hours tracked or custom products/services.
Let’s see how Apploye helps you to manage your time as an independent contractor more efficiently.
You can get all the features shown in the above table and more in Apploye with the most cost-effective pricing plans.
Pros and Cons for Independent Contractor Time Tracking
Pros of Apploye
- Advanced features for task and project & project budgeting
- Customizable report generation
- Pomodoro break reminder system. Independent contractors can set break times with definite intervals like 50-minute work with 10 minutes breaks.
- World-class support system.
Cons of Apploye
There hasn't been any significant downside of Apploye yet noted. However, some people might perceive its employee monitoring system as too intrusive because of the screenshot tool. However, this is a no-brainer. You can simply turn off the feature.
- Solo: $4 per user per month (Ideal for freelancers & contractors)
- Standard: $5 per user per month (Ideal for the general team & In-house teams)
- Premium: $6 per user per month (Ideal for the mobile teams)
- Elite: $7 per user per month (Ideal for remote teams)
Note: You can get a straight 50% discount by choosing the yearly plan
Other Best Time Tracking Apps for Independent Contractors
If you are on a hunt for time-tracking apps, then you are in for a treat. As you have seen by now, every tracking app accomplishes the same result. Then how do you choose the best time tracking app for android, IOS, macOS, Windows, Linux?
The answer is simple. Usually, time tracking apps are built for remote teams. Their features fit with teams comprising a large number of people. Furthermore, their pricing plans also reflect the glaring truth.
However, if you are an individual contractor, aka freelancer, you need a time tracking app that fits your personal needs.
We are here with a tried-and-true list of the 9 best time tracking apps tailored to individual contractors' needs. We've already discussed about Apploye, let's check the other ones.
Toggl has a motto that is crucial to discuss the best time tracking app.
Simple Time Tracking Powerful Reporting
This two-liner sums up everything one expects in a tracking app. Since this blog is designed to meet freelancers' queries, we will be listing down features for Toggl free plan.
Features of Toggl Free Version
- Essential time tracking features include tracker, manual customization, timeline, reminders, idle time detection, etc.
- Exporting features such as CSV format import, detailed and summarized versions of weekly reports, etc.
- Basic project management features. You can add unlimited projects by unlimited clients, even in the free version.
- Primary team management features (might come in handy if you work in a two or three-person team)
- Over 100+ third-party integrations in the paid plan. However, you still get the basic integrations in the free version as well.
- It comes in all formats and devices, i.e., mobile (iOS & Android), desktop (Windows/Mac/Linux), and Chrome extension too.
Pros of Toggl
- As said, Toggl has a robust free version dedicated to individual contractors & freelancers.
- As the motto suggests, the software does have powerful reporting features.
- The software uses the Pomodoro reminder system. Hence, the user can set a timer to break down the work into several stages, along with necessary breaks.
Cons of Toggl
There have not been many user complaints against Toggl. However, the free version does lack some essential features as per past user reviews. Moreover, the Mac version of the app is also referred to as ‘broken’ by some users. Nonetheless, most of the issues have been reviewed and fixed last time we checked.
To learn more about Toggl, check our comprehensive list of Toggl Alternatives in 2023.
Clockify is considered one of the best time tracking apps for independent contractors with a small in-house or remote team of freelancers under their wings. The app is well-suited for people who work on an hourly basis. It is one of the top time tracking software for accountants and consultants.
Key Features of Clockify
- Time tracking from anywhere on any device, i.e., desktop, browser extension, or mobile app.
- Wide range of third-party integrations such as Google Calendar, ClickUp, etc.
- ROI tracking and live updates of project progression.
- Assessment of the user’s productivity level.
- Setting hourly rates and calculating the billable amount.
On top of everything, you can export your worktime data to your client after the project completion.
Pros of Clockify
- It’s completely FREE.
- The app is flexible to use and adaptable on any device.
- Unlimited time tracking (yes, it’s free).
- Easy and seamless integration.
Cons of Clockify
Most of the cons that other users and we have noticed revolve around its Windows app. Apparently, users have a hard time adapting to the Windows platform. Although the software does provide a detailed report, it does not offer a concise summary that most users seek.
Moreover, a basic feature, in our opinion, the best time tracking app should have an automatic invoice generation system. Clockify clearly lacks in this aspect.
For more details check our list of the best clockify alternatives.
Everhour ought to come up in any discussion involving the best time tracking app on the web. The platform positions itself as more than a time tracking software. Instead, it poses as a time management software due to the rich array of features it offers.
Features of Everhour
- Advanced time tracking features such as billable/non-billable time, leave tracking, timesheets, etc.
- Wide range of third-party integration (not available in the free version).
- Customizable reporting features.
- Essential team management features.
- Project management, including resource planning.
- Budget management and expense tracking.
- Customizable customer invoice generation.
Pros of Everhour
- Everhour boasts of its integration system, as it offers deep integration and seamless setup.
- Apart from time tracking, the software also rates well on the project management and resource planning spectrum.
- It ranks well on user experience and customer support.
Cons of Everhour
Despite such rich features, what Everhour truly lacks is a mobile app. It does have an iOS app. However, the user experience has been reported to be poor.
Furthermore, the free version does not allow third-party integration. It is a well-established reason for freelancers to avoid this platform in the first place.
See our list of the Everhour alternatives.
Harvest is the ideal time tracking app for freelancers who seek robust billing support. The platform even has a dedicated plan for one user only. So, whether you are an individual contractor or consultant, feel free to check out the Harvest free version.
Key Features of Harvest
- Powerful time tracking features even in the free version.
- Equally powerful reporting options.
- Unlimited invoice generation.
- Third-party integrations with more than a hundred apps.
- Harvest has applications, regardless of device, operating system, and platform.
- Customer Support.
Pros of Harvest
- The strongest USP of Harvest is its easy-to-use billing features that make the platform ideal for freelancers.
- The security system on the platform is also regarded as relatively strong.
- As we have seen, the user interface is uniquely interactive.
- Its Project Budget Alert system makes Harvest ideal for budget management.
Cons of Harvest
As with us, most users have complaints about its timer protocol. Moreover, the free version is limited to 2 projects only. Hence, if you are an individual contractor just starting out, Harvest might be an ideal choice for you.
See our list of the best Harvest alternatives.
Designed exclusively for independent contractors and freelancers, TopTracker is a 100% free platform for time tracking with screenshots and invoice generation.
Key Features of TopTracker
- Free invoice generation & payment processing with Payoneer.
- Time tracking is made easy with shortcut keys.
- Timed Screenshots
- Detailed productivity and activity report.
- Privacy settings are conducive to freelancing.
Pros of TopTracker
- As we said, this platform was created for freelancers. Hence, it works regardless of the platform you choose.
- The platform provides a bird’s eye view of all your projects.
- It’s completely free.
- Cheery on top: there are no caps on the number of projects.
TopTracker sounds too good to be true. As of now, very few free platforms as robust as TopTracker exist.
Cons of TopTracker
The platform is still a newbie in the time tracking software industry. Hence, no mobile app still exists for TopTracker. Furthermore, we could not find a good number of user reviews to come to a decision. Nonetheless, it’s free of cost. What’s stopping you from trying it?
If you are low on budget and looking for a free-forever package designed for your freelancing needs, TimeCamp ticks every criterion.
Key Features of TimeCamp
- Essential time tracking features.
- Unlimited project & task time tracking, even in the free version.
- Productivity tracker and reporting system.
- It has an app for both mobile and desktop.
Pros of TimeCamp
The overall software is an extremely robust time tracking and invoicing app. However, the free version is nothing extraordinary. It just does what you expect it to do: track time without you spending a penny.
Cons of TimeCamp
Unlike other apps described the free version of Timecamp lacks third-party integrations.
Furthermore, the free version also lacks several essential features that you would typically expect in your chosen best time tracking app. For instance, exporting reports, budgeting and invoicing, etc.
Also see our comprehensive list of the best Timecamp alternatives.
8. Time Doctor
If you have got a bit higher budget, you can consider checking out Time Doctor as they have some advanced features. It is quite suitable to manage tasks as independent contractors.
Key Features of Time Doctor
- Time tracking
- Powerful report
- Employee attendance tracking
- Client feature
- Payment management
- Offtrack reminders
- Breaks tracking
- Time use alert
- Productivity measurement
Pros of Time Doctor
The overall software is an extremely robust time tracking and invoicing feature. They have got some differentiated features like time use alert and offtrack reminder.
Cons of Time Doctor
Though they have multiple features, they have limited much with the pricing plans. It has one month data storage system for the basic plan, which is very little. However, their pricing is comparatively higher than the competitors.
The best Timedoctor Alternative list you can check.
DeskTime is a popular automatic time tracking software for teams and freelancers. It has got both mobile and desktop app for effective time tracking, attendance, and workflow management. It'll eliminate the need for using employee productivity tracker template in excel to calclulate productivity.
Key Features of Time Doctor
- Project time tracking
- Custom Report Generation
- Cost calculation and project billing
- Offline time tracking
- Third-party app integration
- Mobile app
Pros of Desktime
Desktime has some powerful features that are in line with the workflow management of independent contractors.
Cons of Desktime
They have got a very limited features for the free plan. You need to upgrade to a paid version to enjoy all the benefits as an independent contractor, and the pricing is a bit higher in the case of Desktime.
👉 See our comprehensive list of Desktime Alternatives in 2023.
10. Upwork Time Tracker
The renowned freelance platform Upwork provides its own time tracker for the freelancers who work on it. It is a convenient time tracker with essential features that help the user provide a time log, edit task descriptions, and bill the client accordingly.
Key Features of Upwork Time Tracker
- Basic time tracking features
- Memo and Activity Label Editing
- Contract switching when necessary
- Tracked time in three different formats
- Modifying information before the billing starts
Pros of Upwork Time Tracker
Upwork Time Tracker is a valuable time tracker that can be deployed in Windows, Mac, and Linux. It records Screen captures, memos, camera snapshots, and activity rates. You can review the billed time in the Current session, Today, and This week's views.
Cons of Upwork Time Tracker
The Time zone syncing issue is an old problem in Upwork Time Tracker. Sometimes it provides the users with faulty billable hours calculation that hampers smooth client billing.
Many users complained about the privacy option as they have limited control over screenshots, deleting that particular working tenure. Again, the Payment Protection for Manual Time Logging feature is also missing in Upwork Time Tracker.
- Capterra: N/A
- G2: N/A
Why do independent contractors need time tracking app?
Managing time for every project or task you work on is the most important thing. Otherwise, there is a chance of going out of the track. A time tracking app can help you manage everything you need to accomplish a task smoothly.
Let's look at the reasons for using a time tracking app as an independent contractor.
- Keeping track of work hours
- Project budgeting and tracking progress
- Calculating timesheets
- Calculating Payments and billable hours
- Issuing invoices for clients
- Generate report
- Measuring Personal performance
To learn more about these reasons and how to get these done using time tracking software, check the Bonus part available at the end of the list.
Reasons to use time tracking Software to manage independent contractors efficiently
Keeping Track of Works
As an independent contractor or freelancer, it's essential to keep track of your works. It becomes challenging to keep track once you work on multiple projects or tasks. There remains the chance to miss the deadlines.
No worries, time tracking will help you keep track of your works and progress. You can track your tasks both individually or in a project.
Timesheets can help you remain updated about your everyday task. Using a timesheet app, you can easily calculate the amount of time you have worked in a day and the time you have spent on different tasks.
Calculating Payments and Billable Hours
If you work hourly with your client, you need to calculate the payment and billable hours. You can get this data automatically by adding your hourly pay rate and tracking with a time tracking app.
Once your task is finished and done with the payment calculation, it's time to send the invoice to your client. A time tracking app allows you to generate invoices automatically with other features mentioned before.
Generating Reports and Measuring Performance
Reports are important to measure own performance and the measures to be taken for further improvement. A time tracking software can help you generate daily, weekly, monthly, custom reports based on the timesheets, projects, and tasks. You can send the report to your client as well.
The definition of the best independent contractor time tracking app varies. Some prioritize budget while opting for a platform. Others prefer the richness of features. The rest might choose ease-of-use or customer support over anything. Whatever your preference, we hope that you have found your desired time tracking app.
If you are still confused, make a run for the free 10-days trial at Apploye because we believe that time is too precious to be wasted.