Workpuls Teramind ActivTrak Hubstaff DeskTime Time Doctor RescueTime Kickidler Veriato Work Examiner
OVERVIEW
Price $6/user/month $6/user/month $7.20/user/month $7/user/month $7/user/month $9.99/user/month $6/user/month $9.99/user/month $150/licence/year $60/licence (lifetime)
Free trial 7 days 7 days No 14 days 14 days 14 days 30 days 7 days Yes 30 days
Ease of use Very easy Difficult Very easy Easy Easy Very easy Very easy Very easy Very difficult Easy
TRACKING METHODS
Unlimited (tracker working 24/7)
Fixed (defined working hours)
Automatic (when computer is connected to a specified network)
Manual (start/stop)
Project based (track time only on projects)
GENERAL MONITORING FEATURES
Stealth mode
App and website usage
Real-time monitoring
Offline time tracking
Attendance
Activity levels
Keylogger
Geolocation
Remote desktop control
Website/activity blocking
SCREENSHOTS AND RECORDING
Screenshots
Screenshots on demand
Screen recording
PRODUCTIVITY FEATURES
Productivity trends
Websites and apps labeling
Category labeling
Productivity alerts
ADVANCED SECURITY FEATURES
User behavior analytics
Data loss prevention
Advanced file and web monitoring
REPORTING
Productivity reports
Team reports
Timelines
Email reports
Access management
PLATFORMS
Web
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app
Mobile app iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android Android
Browser extension Chrome Chrome Chrome
Other Citrix, VMware Chrome OS
OTHER
Support Phone, email, online Phone, email, online Phone, email, online Email, online Phone, email, online, in-person Online Phone, email, online Email, online, Viber, Whatsapp Phone, email, online, support ticket Phone, email, online
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Integrations comming soon
API
Deployment cloud, on-premise cloud, on-premise, AWS, Azure cloud cloud cloud cloud cloud on-premise cloud, on-premise on-premise
Kronos Humanity Timeclockplus Tsheets Wheniwork Deputy Replicon Jibble EbilityTimeTracker OnTheClock BeeBole
OVERVIEW
Price(per month)Available upon requestFrom $2 per userAvailable upon requestFrom $6.40 per user+$16Free for up to 75 usersFrom $2.50 per userBasic plan:$30 for 5 users+$5 per additional userFrom $1.50 per employeeFrom $4 per user+$8From $2.20 per user$5.99 per user per month
Free trial30 days14 daysYes14 days14 days14 days30 days30 days,no credit card required
Ease of useDifficultEasyDifficultVery easyEasyEasyDifficultVery easyEasyEasyEasy
FEATURES
Timecard management
Scheduling
Shift Trading
Timesheets
Break time management
Real-time tracking
PTO Management
Payroll
Invoicing
Client billing
GPS tracking
Clock out reminders
Alerts
Manual time
PUNCH-IN METHODS
Web app
Mobile app
Time clock device
Time clock kiosk
Facial recognition
Fingerprint scanning
Geofencing
Group punch-in
REPORTING
Visual reports
Email reports
Time rounding
MANAGEMENT
Permissions
Manager approvals
Add time for others
Integrations
PLATFORMS
Web
Android app
iOS app
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app
OTHER
SupportPhone and onlinePhone and onlinePhone,chat and onlinePhone and chatEmail and onlineChat and phonePhone,email,chat and onlinePhone and onlinePhone,email,chat and onlinePhone and onlineOnline chat and video support in English,French,and Spanish
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Community forum
API
Workpuls Hubstaff Toggl TimeDoctor Harvest TimeCamp Timely Everhour Tick TMetric
OVERVIEW
Price (per month) $6 per user $5.83 per user $9 per user $9.99 per user $10.80 per user $5.25 per user $99 for 5 users $7 per user $19 for 10 projects $5 per user
Free trial 7 days 14 days 30 days 14 days 30 days Yes 14 days 14 days 30 days 30 days
Ease of use Very easy Difficult Difficult Very easy Easy Very easy Easy Difficult Very easy Difficult
TIME TRACKING METHODS
Manual
Start/stop buttons
Automatic time mapping
IN-DEPTH TASK AND PROJECT ANALYSIS
Screenshots
App and website usage
Activity levels coming soon
Real-time tracking
TASK AND PROJECT MANAGEMENT
Project adding
Project templates
Project status
Task assignment
Task priorities
Budgeting coming soon
Mark billable/non-billable hours
Payroll calculation
Invoicing
ALERTS
Idle time reminders
Deadline alerts coming soon
Budget alerts coming soon
REPORTING
Client login
Productivity analysis
Email reports coming soon
PLATFORMS
Web
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app coming soon
iOS app Beta
Android app
Browser extension Chrome Chrome, Firefox Chrome Chrome Chrome, Firefox Chrome Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Edge
OTHER
Support Phone and online Email and online Email and online Online Online, email and phone Email, online and support ticket Email and chat Email and chat Email Chat
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Integrations coming soon
API
On-premise hosting

The virtual assistant is a job title that has risen drastically in profile in recent years, correlating with the prominence of remote and hybrid work models. In a virtual work environment, there are seemingly always tasks stuck in transit, emails to be sent, and data to be collected. 

Since working with VAs is becoming more commonplace, it’s no longer a question of whether you should hire one and more: what are the best ways to manage them? 

The most obvious answer is with virtual assistant software, since technology and productivity go hand in hand. However, if the software is new to you, you might not get the most out of your investment.

In this guide, we’ll help you identify the best tools and features in virtual assistant software so you can settle on the right solution for you and maximize the office productivity of your VAs.

Why Use Virtual Assistant Software?

In case you’re new to this type of software, or still on the fence as to whether you should invest, let’s briefly examine the main reasons it’s worth using virtual assistant software:

  • Outsource Work About Work - Work about work: it’s the culprit of many a wasted hour, so why not outsource it where possible? With the right software, you can hand over the reins with admin privileges and let your VA take care of the busywork that bogs down your work day.
  • Spend Less Time on Communication - VA software is all about creating shortcuts. Take Slack, for instance, a channel-based communication tool that simplifies contextualized conversations. With it, you can drastically cut down on the time it takes your VAs to communicate.
  • Monitor VA Activity Effectively - You don’t always know what your VA is working on, but with VA software, you can track their activity from the moment they clock in. That way, you can examine their productivity, but also make judgment calls regarding how their time would be best utilized.

Top 6 Virtual Assistant Software Features for Managing VAs Effectively

After you’ve made the decision to invest in VA software, you’ll want to make every effort to ensure you select the option that best reflects your needs. To do so, it’s worth knowing what features to look out for and which tools can provide the highest ROI.

With that said, here are some of the top 6 features for managing VAs effectively with virtual assistant software:

Real-Time Activity Monitoring

The idea of hiring a VA is to save time, so why rely merely on the assumption that this is the case?

To sidestep any doubts you may have about your employee productivity levels, you need VA software that offers time tracking. With user activity monitoring software Insightful, for instance, here’s what you can do to measure your VA team’s performance:

  • Use regular screenshots to rest assured that there’s minimal idle time 
  • Establish a remote worker surveillance plan to review time data on the employee timeline, which will show you when each VA was most and least active during the day 
  • Monitor employee activity with a glance at the activity chart to quickly understand the balance of idle time versus productive time 
  • Schedule shifts in advance and receive notifications when a VA shows up late or clocks out
  • Go into the logs tab to see what each VA has been working on according to various filters such as the computer they used, the websites they visited, or the apps they spent time in 

With staff tracking software, you’ll never again question the value your VAs bring, since it’s made plainly obvious how they spend their work hours. A home office monitoring software solution like Insightful can provide detailed insights into how and when your VAs work best.

Chat Channels

There’s nothing more frustrating than the lack of centralized communication with your VAs. Email is inadequate for the job, since it all too often ends in lengthy threads and important nuggets of information can easily get buried.

Tools like Slack do an excellent job of bringing communication together for different teams, departments, and projects. 

With context-specific chat channels, like those Slack offer, what you get is a simple way for you and your team to ping your VAs and keep the information about different projects and teams separate.

Asynchronous Communication

Just as the ability to hop on a video call or directly message your VAs can be important, it’s equally as useful to have access to means of asynchronous communication.

By asynchronous communication we mean any form of contact that doesn’t require the other party’s presence in the moment, for example:

  •  Task labels
  •  Project-related comments
  •  Notes
  •  Messages
  •  Videos

We live in an increasingly global world, and as such, it’s not uncommon to hire VAs that live in different time zones. With that being the case, you need ways of communicating that don’t require the recipient to be online.

With labels, notes, and comments for instance, your VAs can let you know what has changed with regards to individual tasks and projects, saving you the need to hop on a call. Likewise, if you can record quick videos with your VA software you can provide instructions for your VAs ahead of time.

Calendar Syncing

If you regularly review a personal or team calendar, then calendar syncing is an essential VA software feature to look out for.

Calendar syncing ensures that to-do lists and project deadlines translate to dates on a calendar, so all actions your VAs take show up in an easy-to-digest format. This can remove any friction there may be in communicating information, and keeps everyone on the team up to date with project and task statuses.

Data Reports

While real-time activity monitoring provides you with data you can act upon in the moment, it’s data reports that inform you of VAs activities at the end of the work day, week, or even quarter.

With data-packed reports, you can pay your VAs for every hour worked, and make judgment calls if necessary. 

Insightful makes it effortless to review performance, since time tracked is linked to activities and app usage. Time data on its own is useful but doesn’t reveal the whole picture. When you can see what apps and websites your VAs rely on most heavily, you can form a clear idea of what their day-to-day workload looks like.

File Sharing

Just like with email, files can provide a stumbling block for teams and VAs.

Why?

Because sending them back and forth is inconvenient and time-consuming. 

Wouldn’t it be much easier if you could co author documents on the fly, sign off on VA changes, and share access with a click?

If you want to cut down on “work about work”, finding VA software that lets you edit and share files easily is a great place to start. Some solutions will even let you create wikis or knowledge bases where you can, for instance, provide instructions for how your VAs should complete various tasks or activities.

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