Honest Review:

User-friendly interface and seamless integrations but a basic time tracking functionality that lacks GPS tracking.

Written by Asim Qureshi
By Asim Qureshi, CEO Jibble

As a CEO of a time tracking software company I need to know what my competitors are up to. That means I’m often researching about and/or playing around with their products, you know, it’s part of the job. Here, I share my findings of that research, giving credit to those competitors where credit is due and being honest about which products I believe you really need to avoid. And so, there you have it, this review, and in it, I try to be honest, fair, and insightful…

This review covers:


BambooHR knows how to combine all the essential tools for managing a team, from time tracking to payroll integrations and progress reports. But what really stands out to me is its self-service option that allows employees to enter their information and save HR time.

When it comes to time tracking, BambooHR makes it a breeze with simple clocking in and out, timesheet creation, and attendance and PTO monitoring. But let’s not forget, time tracking is just one of the many management features this software offers. The software’s employee welfare surveys make sure your team is happy and well taken care of. And for those on-the-go, the software also has a mobile app, although it may not be as feature-rich as its desktop counterpart.

Adding to the software’s limitations, while the reporting feature can give you the numbers you need, it can be a bit inflexible and lacks the customization options that many users crave. On top of that, some users have found the add-ons to be a bit pricey, which can be a deal-breaker for smaller businesses. And while the training feature is helpful, it could use a bit more oomph to really make it shine. A little more customization and interactivity would go a long way toward making BambooHR truly effective.

View of bambooHR's mobile app

What Users Like

  • Great to store employee information in one place
  • Applicant tracking system
  • Simple form filling and acquiring e-signatures
  • Employee welfare surveys
  • Easy to use and enjoyable interface

What Users Don’t Like

  • The reporting feature is limited for many users
  • Expensive as add-ons have extra cost
  • The training feature is lacking
  • Mobile app not as feature-rich

Pricing Plans

BambooHR provides users with two pricing plans, Essential and Advantage, and the option of getting a custom price for free.

Essentials: This plan includes employee records, report generation, email alerts, and the mobile app.

Advantage: This plan has all the Essentials features with the added benefits of onboarding and off-boarding, an applicant tracking system, in-depth custom reports, and employee surveys.

The pricing varies based on the number of employees and the specific features and services included in each plan. Aside from the basic plans, customers can pick some add-on features for an extra cost, such as project tracking, employee timesheets, assessments, performance reports, and more payroll options.

Standout Features of BambooHR

1. Time Tracking With PTO

BambooHR’s time tracking software is straightforward to use. It keeps track of how much time employees spend on which tasks through convenient clocking in and out. This information is used to generate timesheets and organize employee data over a timeline.

The software allows the management of attendance and overtime, followed by reports to put that data into perspective. Vacation tracking allows employers to approve employees’ time off after checking current work schedules. BambooHR even provides a PTO calculator for employees to stay informed about their days off, and they can mark scheduled vacations in their calendars as a reminder.

Web Interface showing benefits to employees

2. Payroll Records 

BambooHR streamlines the payroll process by offering a three-step solution. Employers can prevent double entry by entering all employee data into a single database, including hours worked, pay, and bank information.

The payroll hours report further facilitates payroll calculations to ensure that employees are always compensated according to their work. This also creates a payroll per employee summary with each individual’s entire payroll process and information organized in one place. Furthermore, employees can access payroll information relevant to them, like pay stubs and deposits.

Payroll interface displaying an HR manager's records including employee names and total payroll

3. Employee Data and Analytics 

BambooHR’s employee data and analytics feature make it easy to record and access employee data in one database. It has a self-service option that allows employees to enter their information and save HR the time and energy wasted on such an essential task. Managers can limit employees’ access to their profiles and keep sensitive company information private and secure. Along with that, there is a section for workflows and approvals, which makes tackling them quicker and more efficient.

Furthermore, HR can generate detailed and extensive reports to help analyze the organization’s progress. This enables managers to make effective, well-informed decisions that benefit the business and all the employees. The dashboard organizes all these insights in a visually appealing style; users can even share these reports with other interested parties.

Employee Profile showing details like name, job information and compensation

4. Recruitment Tools 

BambooHR provides simple hiring tools and an applicant tracking system to simplify recruitment. The platform collects candidate information, allowing employers to review applications quickly and communicate with candidates efficiently. Users can check candidates as soon as they apply, communicate seamlessly with them for a better employment process, and provide employers with every advantage when searching for potential top-level employees.

The recruitment software further enables users to carry out their hiring process as a team, ensuring all the necessary people are in the loop the entire time. This makes the process more interactive and smooth as multiple team members handle the applications and hiring for the firm’s future workforce.


BambooHR's recruiting software interface

5. Employee Welfare and Performance Reports

BambooHR also offers a unique feature which is the employee satisfaction program. It keeps employees satisfied and engaged while taking their input to improve the company and its internal processes. With their reviews anonymous, employees are encouraged to give honest feedback and constructive criticism, and reports help managers find trends and work on positive development.

Employers can conduct staff assessments and performance reviews thanks to another element related to employee and organizational improvement. Employees can regularly be reminded to participate in these assessments and set professional goals they want to achieve individually or as a team.

Employee wellbeing charts and metrics

Selected Positive User Feedback: 

  • “As far as onboarding new employees, it makes it very simple and user-friendly for both the employer and the new employee.” – Jennifer Hagen (Source TrustRadius)
  • UX is nice, clean, and self-explanatory, and it doesn’t require a lot of time in daily work.” – Aleksandra R. (Source G2)
  • “The applicant tracking system is very easy to use and goes the extra mile with automation and thoughtfulness concerning onboarding and then “flowing” into the core HRIS.” – Jeff W. (Source Capterra)
  • “How easy BambooHR makes managing employees as an HR team of one: From administering benefits to payroll & benefits to keeping track of anniversaries and birthdays and beyond — I no longer live in spreadsheets! It’s amazing.” – Elizabeth W. (Source G2)
  • Love sending out forms I need signed and completed. It is so easy to see who has completed the forms and who needs reminding. Keeps me from having to keep track and from chasing people down.” – Kyra (Source Software Advice)
  • Supervisors being able to view employee documents at any time without having to come to our main location to pull the heavy paper file has been fantastic. And I always have current data at my fingertips, including historical items that we used to have to go wade through old memos to reconstruct.” – Tracie P. (Source Capterra)
  • “It’s easy to use, my personal portal is easy to navigate and update accordingly, and I can see when my time cards are approved and what my total hours are at a glance.” – Verified Reviewer (Source Capterra)
  • “We have just started implementing the employee satisfaction feature and are really enjoying the feedback we are able to get and the reporting the system provides.” – Lara W. (Source G2)
  • Personnel files and folders are all in one place…from the point of hire to goals to promotions.” – Verified Reviewer (Source Capterra)
  • “I thought this site contained a lot of cool features, for example, the welcome section for new hires. This application makes your resources and links simple to find as well!” – Verified User (Source TrustRadius)
  • “We’ve found the software to be as advertised, constantly being improved, and customer service has been communicative on any questions or one-off special requests.” – Crystal W. (Source G2)
  • The marketplace for BambooHR to integrate across other products is wide and hugely helpful in organizations wherein there are other products, it is helpful. Implementation is super easy.” – Ashwini J. (Source Capterra)
  • My favorite features were the onboarding, performance management, and reporting as well as how well laid out everything was and clean smart design that was user friendly.” – Angelique (Source Software Advice)
  • “It has a powerful system for managing user permissions to allow supervisors access to necessary areas and limit the access of employees.” – Gary McCarthy (Source TrustRadius)
  • I also use the performance module, and the interface is straightforward to use for self-assessment and peer feedback. The reports that it delivers are also handy.” – Claire M. (Source G2)

Selected Negative User Feedback: 

  • Very limited when compared to the websiteMany of the app functions don’t work correctly, and tabs are missing information/ options. The app needs much improvement.” – Shyster Three (Source Google Play Store)
  • The reporting is not as user-friendly as it could be and can feel tedious for less tech-savvy HR users.” – Gary McCarthy (Source TrustRadius)
  • Performance review is a separate module and needs an additional payment (too expensive).” – Victor (Source Software Advice)
  • Setting up leave management policies can be complex to understand, and I’m never sure I did it right. On the 1st of January, I realized that I didn’t do it well, which was too late, and I needed to make corrections in everyone’s balances.” – Aleksandra R. (Source G2)
  • If you’re looking for a comprehensive ATS with top-of-the-line performance management processes and strong benefit administration, BambooHR won’t deliver all the way.” – Dina A. (Source Capterra)
  • Onboarding is only geared to true new hires. If you have an employee who is transferred to a new division within the organization and needs to be assigned new tasks that are well documented, the software does not have the ability to manage transfers. To have more features you need to pay more.” – Lisa (Source Software Advice)
  • Payroll management system needs global setup for all currencies and more payment channels.” – Peter C. (Source Capterra)
  • The training module on BambooHR seems to have some limitations for employees being self-directed to check off when they have completed their training.” – Lara W. (Source G2)
  • “The cost of the software seems to be on the high price as add-on features requires extra payment…particularly, if you take on a few of the modules.” – Verified Reviewer (Source Capterra)
  • I would like to have more filter options to send out announcements so that we can use this feature more often. For example, sometimes an announcement should only go out to our managers or to a group of people attending a certain event.” – Maria V. (Source G2)
  • “One thing that I think is missing is the reporting feature of the products as compared to some of its other competitorsIt should provide some elaborate reporting with many metrics.” – Kumar (Source Software Advice)
  • “We managed to figure out how to set up the various features we wanted within BambooHR, and their online help directory was useful, but it would’ve been nice to have more onboarding support from their onboarding team.” – Mike Cheney (Source TrustRadius)
  • Some of the features are geared more toward work-from-home professional jobs rather than our in-person, services-based work.” – Crystal W. (Source G2)
  • The product features in comparison to global products are limited. As an organization, when you are scaling across other geographies, the features throw a challenge.” – Ashwini J. (Source Capterra)
  • The Training feature; doesn’t quite work with how we need to enter data for our non-profit. We still use it, but it could be better.” – Kristy (Source Software Advice)

Ratings from Other Reviews

(As of 04/06/2023)

  • Google Play Store: 3.4/5 (in the US)
  • App Store: 3.4/5 (in the US)
  • Capterra: 4.6/5
  • G2: 4.4/5
  • Software Advice: 4.5/5
  • TrustRadius: 8.4/10

Final Thoughts

BambooHR is an excellent tool for managing employees and keeping track of their time and payroll. The software’s user-friendly interface and seamless integration of essential HR features make it a powerful asset for any growing business. My focus is on BambooHR’s time tracking capabilities, which include work hour logs, timesheets, and payroll calculations based on employee hours worked. I also appreciate the added features such as progress reports, employee surveys, recruitment tools, and performance evaluations, which can help your organization stay on top of employee management.

One thing I’ve noticed is that while the mobile app is convenient for on-the-go access, it is frustratingly slow at times and doesn’t offer all the same features as the website. It would be great to see BambooHR improve the app’s functionality to make it a more seamless experience.

Another area for improvement is the reporting feature. While it’s helpful to have some basic insights, I often find myself wanting more detailed information to make informed decisions. Customizable reporting options would be a game-changer in terms of analyzing data effectively. I think BambooHR could take the time tracking functionality to the next level by adding unique tracking features like GPS tracking or geofencing. This would be a huge benefit for tracking on-site or mobile workers, ensuring accurate time and location data. Without these features, the time tracking functionality can feel limited in its usefulness.

By addressing these limitations, I believe BambooHR could become a great tool for tracking time and streamlining HR processes.