Global HR 4 min

Time tracking apps and software systems for freelancers

Written by Barbara Matthews
June 3, 2024
Barbara Matthews


share to linkedInshare to Twittershare to Facebook
Link copied
to clipboard

If your company works with independent contractors or freelancers, your HR professionals can struggle with keeping track of the time they spend on projects. In fact, independent contractors themselves can have a hard time tracking and billing their freelance time accurately. 

Freelance time-tracking apps can help HR professionals and independent contractors track working hours efficiently. These apps can correctly capture billable time, helping build mutual trust between businesses and freelancers.  In this article, we'll review time-tracking apps and software that help you make sure that every project is billed correctly.

Why do freelancers use time tracking apps and software systems?

Freelancers often use time tracking apps to manage their billable hours and invoice their clients.  With time tracking apps and software, clients can get detailed records of time spent on projects. Freelancers and contractors can build a transparent relationship with their clients without having to record their working hours manually.

Advanced time tracking tools can also help users prioritize their tasks and improve their productivity. These tools often come with features like invoicing and reporting. This means that freelancers can focus more on their work and less on cumbersome paperwork.

Necessary features of freelance time tracking apps and software systems 

So, what kinds of features should you be looking for in time tracking apps for contractors and freelancers to make sure you get the best possible results?

Consider these eight key features:

1. Time tracking

Time tracking is the core feature that allows freelancers to accurately record the time they spend on various projects and tasks. Time tracking can be done manually or automatically.

2. Invoicing and billing

Invoicing and billing features help freelancers generate invoices based on tracked time and expenses directly from the app. This makes the billing process and contractor payments a lot easier.

3. Project and task management

Project time tracking and management features make it easy for freelancers to organize their work. Project and task management features help users better organize and prioritize their workload.

4. Reporting and analytics

The best time tracking software for freelancers also provides detailed reports and analytics on productivity levels and project progress. This helps them make informed decisions on how to complete their tasks.

5. Integration capabilities

Look for apps that support easy integration with other tools and platforms. This includes calendar apps, project management software, and accounting systems.

6. Expense tracking

A great feature to have is the ability to track and categorize expenses related to projects expenses. Expense tracking helps with accurate invoicing and budgeting.

7. Customization and scalability

Ideally, your tool provides options to customize the interface, reports, and invoicing templates to match the freelancer’s branding. It should also be able to handle scaling for a growing business.

8. Mobile accessibility

Make sure the app offers mobile time tracking and task management on the go so that freelancers can stay productive regardless of their location.

When loaded with these features, time tracking tools can be a great help for contractors, freelancers, and consultants.

7 best freelance time tracking apps and software

In this section, we review seven top time tracking apps and software for freelancers. The list showcases a variety of features to give you a good sense of what the available tools can do.

Remote: The best for extensive freelance work

Remote offers HR Management software that includes time tracking features and comprehensive HR features to support businesses and freelancers. 

With Remote, you can pay your international team members through built-in time tracking features from a single platform. Whether your team members are employees, freelancers, or contractors, Remote helps you track working hours to pay your team members compliantly.


  • All-in-one platform for managing remote and freelance employees worldwide

  • HR Management helps you pay salaries and taxes as per local law requirements

  • Mobile app for mobile team members


  • Higher costs for comprehensive services


  • HR Management: No costs

  • Contractor Management: 29 USD per month per contractor

A contractor submitting an invoice

Toggl Track: User-friendly

Toggl Track is well-known for its simplicity and ease of use. You can track time with a single click and add manual time entries. Toggl Track also offers reporting and project organization features.

If you’re looking for a free time-tracking app for freelancers, Toggl Track is a good place to start.


  • Intuitive, user-friendly design makes it easy for freelancers to use

  • Integrates with other productivity tools


  • Additional fees for more advanced features

  • Users with complex projects may find the platform too simple

Harvest: For reporting features

Harvest offers time tracking, invoicing, expense tracking, and reporting features. It’s designed for freelancers and teams who need to manage multiple projects and clients.  


  • Offers detailed reports to understand project profitability and resource allocation

  • You can send invoices directly from the app

  • Integrates well with popular project management and accounting software


  • Higher costs when you have a larger team

  • Limited customization options for reports and invoices


  • Free account for 1 seat and 2 projects

  • Harvest Pro: 10.80 USD per user per month (billed annually)

Clockify: For teams of any size

Clockify is a free time tracker and timesheet app that supports an unlimited number of users, projects, and tasks. It offers a simple start and stop timer, manual time entry, comprehensive reporting, and project management capabilities.


  • Free tool for basic time tracking and reporting

  • Helps boost productivity through time estimates, project statuses, and detailed reports


  • Features can be too simple for depending on your needs

  • Price increase for additional features


  • Free tracking tools

  • Standard: 5.49 USD per user per month (billed annually)

  • Pro: 7.99 USD per user per month (billed annually)

  • Enterprise: 11.99 USD per user per month (billed annually)

RescueTime: For personal productivity insights

RescueTime stands out for its automatic time tracking capabilities. It runs silently in the background to monitor computer use and provide detailed reports on productivity and distractions. It also helps users understand their work habits by tracking the time they spend on applications and websites.


  • Eliminates the need for manual time entries, giving you a hassle-free way to monitor productivity

  • Provides in-depth analysis of work habits so that users can easily identify and remove distractions.


  • Less effective for tasks that are not done on a computer or laptop

  • Some users may have privacy concerns about the continuous monitoring of application and website usage.


  • Plans start at 6.50 USD per user per month

Timely: For automatic time tracking

Timely automatically records how much time is spent on each project and task without manual input. This reduces the overhead of time tracking. Plus, users know how they use work hours across projects.


  • Saves time and increases accuracy by automatically logging hours spent on different tasks

  • Protects user privacy and activities without delving into sensitive details.


  • Higher cost compared to some other time tracking tools

  • Some users can be uncomfortable with automatic time tracking features


  • Starter: 9 USD per user per month (billed annually)

  • Premium: 16 USD per user per month (billed annually)

  • Unlimited: 22 USD per user per month (billed annually)

Everhour: For integration with project management apps

Everhour integrates with popular project management apps for detailed time tracking and budgeting. It excels at providing an accurate overview of project progress, expenses, and the team’s productivity levels.


  • Extensive time tracking and budgeting features

  • Detailed insights into project progress


  • Most effective when used with other project management platforms

  • May require adjustment period to use integrated features


  • Free account for freelancers and small teams (up to 5 seats)

  • Team: 8.50 USD per person per month; minimum 5 seats (billed annually)

Try freelance time tracking with Remote

Freelance time tracking apps and software are great tools for keeping an accurate record of time spent on independent contract and freelance projects.

Each tool has different strengths and weaknesses, so choose the one that satisfies your business needs. If your company works with a mix of international employees, contractors, and freelancers, consider Remote’s HR Management software.

Remote HR Management offers time tracking features to support freelancers and independent contractors all over the globe. To see how Remote can help your business and team members, chat with us today.

Trust G2’s multi-country payroll leader to pay your global team

Reduce costs, manage taxes, administer benefits, and stay globally compliant when you consolidate payroll with Remote.

Get started now
Remote is the G2 top-ranked multi-country payroll software

Subscribe to receive the latest
Remote blog posts and updates in your inbox.