Honest Review:
Buddy Punch

Smooth web interface, great scheduling, and efficient facial recognition, but its mobile app needs a bit more work.

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 from 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 Buddy Punch review. And in it, I try to be honest, fair, and insightful. 

This review covers:

Overview

Buddy Punch is a cloud-based employee time clock software that simplifies employee scheduling, time tracking, and payroll. It promises an easy way for businesses to easily track employee time accurately wherever they may be with a user-friendly UI and an array of features designed to streamline several admin processes and maximize productivity all contained in one powerful software. 

With efficient and effective time tracking bannered as its foremost sale point, Buddy Punch offers an intuitive and comprehensive time tracking system that boasts of reducing the time spent manually inputting, analyzing, reviewing, and verifying employee timesheets as compared to the traditional paper-based system which costs a lot of time and effort and is terribly prone to human error and unscrupulous time-theft schemes. The system features flexible punch options such as facial recognition, PIN, QR Code, and traditional username and password entry for punching in and out, GPS and webcam accountability monitoring, Job Codes and Locations to segregate tasks and allow businesses to have a detailed view of where employee hours go, break and leave management, and overtime tracking and alerts among a host of other useful features designed to keep businesses on top of company time, every time. 

While the software indeed has glowing highlights where they matter the most, it also has its fair share of limitations that make it less than ideal for businesses looking for a smoother product. For this Buddy Punch review to be truly honest, we must talk about them as well.

Some issues that affect the Buddy Punch experience include ironic difficulties in punching in and out, the redundant and time-consuming process of time card approval, and its regrettable lack of an offline mode, which may be a deal-breaker for industries that regularly have employees or operations in sites where internet connection is low or absent. 

Buddy Punch web and mobile interface

What do users like about Buddy Punch?

  • Great customer service
  • Easy-to-use software
  • Multiple punch-in options including facial recognition
  • Smooth functioning web version
  • Helpful features for on-the-move teams

Find more about what users love about Buddy Punch.

What don't users like about Buddy Punch?

  • Mobile app is limited
  • Punching out difficulties
  • Time-card step is time consuming

Find more about what users hate about Buddy Punch.

What Pricing Plans does Buddy Punch offer?

Buddy Punch offers three pricing plans to cater to the needs of different businesses. Although they do not have a free plan like other similar software, each tier includes a free trial period to help users decide which plan fits their needs best.

The Standard Plan has a base fee of US$19 per month, and $2.99 will be charged per user per month if billed annually, or $3.49 if billed monthly. This plan can be used by unlimited administrators and includes mobile apps, basic GPS tracking, time off tracking, standard time tracking, reporting, alerts & reminders, payroll integrations, job tracking, break planning, and multi-channel support.

The Pro Plan has the same base fee of US$19 per month as the Standard Plan, and $3.99 will be charged per user per month if billed annually, or $4.49 if billed monthly. In addition to all the features in the Standard Plan, the Pro Plan adds employee scheduling, shift trades & covers, schedule templates, schedule notifications, availability management, and early/late/absent reporting features to the mix.

The Enterprise Plan has everything that the Standard and Pro Plans have to offer, plus single sign-on (SSO) and API access. Prices for this tier are available upon contacting Buddy Punch.

Click here to read 5 things you MUST know about Buddy Punch’s pricing.

What are the Standout Features of Buddy Punch?

1. Buddy Punch Time Tracking and Facial Recognition

Buddy Punch streamlines the process of time tracking from punch-in to payroll with its intuitive and really well-designed system that is designed to capture all billable hours with automated ease, allowing businesses to stay on top of attendance, time off, and overtime with real-time insights that save a lot of time and money in comparison to traditional manual and paper-based means of time tracking.

With Buddy Punch, accurate hours are ensured by multiple punch-in and punch-out options, which include facial recognition. The facial recognition feature ensures that the person punching in or out is indeed the person to whom the account belongs, not any coworker buddy-punching (read: aiding in the unethical act of time theft) for another. This ensures accountability among the ranks and establishes a culture of honesty.

Buddy Punch’s facial recognition, users only need to show their most valuable and visible asset — their face — to the kiosk or any web or mobile device where Buddy Punch is installed to punch in or out. This eliminates the need for easy-to-forget codes and passwords or other unreliable or unwieldy biometric verification systems such as fingerprint scanning, which may not work optimally in conditions or jobs where employees’ hands are often dirty or abraded, such as in construction, fieldwork, service, and culinary industries. 

The time tracked in between punching in and out with facial recognition is recorded by Buddy Punch, accurately calculated for payroll, and automatically generated into reports with filters and details that can be customized to suit most needs, minimizing number-crunching time and simplifying a complicated process into only a few clicks and taps.

Now, all of that is great, but in the interest of really making this Buddy Punch review an honest one, I must note that punching out can be a bit unwieldy sometimes, and when you’re using a mobile device, you may experience some difficulties recording your time due to bugs and glitches.

Facial recognition feature where a camera is operated

2. Geofencing 

With its geofencing feature, Buddy Punch allows businesses to assign a virtual perimeter around job sites with GPS technology so that employees can only punch in when they are in the perimeter of the correct site. They will not be able to track time when outside the area, which relieves users of the burden of ensuring that staff and crew are where they should be during work hours, and that they are only being paid for the actual time that they spend on site.

Any employee may be assigned more than one geofence so that they can switch between jobs or tasks with ease. The perimeters may also be customized depending on business needs, from a radius of 150 feet for small businesses to 5,000 feet for larger and more complex operations, allowing for great flexibility.

The Buddy Punch geofencing feature gives businesses the necessary control over employees’ locations and simplifies the management of multiple teams.

Employee location details through geofences

3. Department Codes

In addition to the geofencing feature, Buddy Punch has a department code or job code feature that gives businesses more granular control over how time is spent by employees, allowing users to track the time they spend on specific projects or tasks.

A department code is given to an employee for a particular job, which they select before punching in, and the time they spent on that task is automatically recorded and calculated by Buddy Punch. They can easily switch between department codes when needed, and admins can view where time goes, accurately and reliably. The data gathered from time tracking with department codes can help businesses make more accurate job costing and ensure maximum profitability.

Time entry section displaying option to enter department codes

4. Zapier Integration

Buddy Punch can be integrated with Zapier to connect with over 750 apps. The integration allows users to seamlessly track their work, making businesses run more efficiently.

With Zapier, employees can use the text-to-punch feature, allowing them to punch in or out with SMS, which is very useful when in areas without reliable Internet connectivity. SMS punching can also be used by managers to punch specific employees in or out.

Another cool thing you can do with Buddy Punch’s  Zapier integration is the one-time entering of multiple punch-ins and punch-outs through Google Sheets, saving companies a lot of time in comparison to manual individual entry. 

More control over attendance can be achieved through text alerts enabled by Zapier for every punch-in or punch-out, allowing administrators to see who punched when, where, and with what department code.

Display of integration options through zapier

Selected Positive User Feedback: 

  • The ease of this software helps me post schedules quickly. I have three businesses and staff that float between all. The color coding system helps me see what employee or department needs attention.” – Waneitra B. (Source Capterra)
  • Buddy Punch has solved our timekeeping problems. It is easy to use, and the employees like it as well.” – Jimmy C. (Source Capterra)
  • Overall, this is a pretty good app. It’s easy to use, and the last update really put everything right at your fingertips.” – Elio Hidalgo (Google Play Store)
  • Easy to navigate and understand, I like the most you use it is easier to get used to the idea of entering and marking yours in and out. A good way for us employees really keep track of hours worked” – Salvador M. (Source G2)
  • That is one of the things I think is most important – great customer service. The accessibility to actual people can help valuable.” – Valerie T. (Source GetApp)
  • The ease and convenience of this software is user-friendly, quickly accessible, and easy to train new staff on.” – Ellen A. (Source Capterra)
  • Perfect for on-the-go service. There’s no way anyone should be late.” – C. Teasly (Source App Store)
  • I use Buddy Punch for time tracking and PTO accrual. This software reduces stress for me by allowing me to track my hours as it is convenient, instead of needing to drop what I’ve got my hands in already to log in and punch in or out by the time on the clock’s face.” – Kelly Wolldridge (Source TrustRadius)
  • Very convenient and easy to use time-off requests, and being able to be my favorite feature! It also provides easy, clear summaries of PTO and when they can be used.” – Nicole Segebart (Source TrustRadius)
  • I love the facial recognition feature and other features that are offered to ensure that your staff is on the job site in order to sign in.” – Valerie T. (Source GetApp)
  • I use this app with my small painting business. We move around a lot, so this app makes it easy to know if employees are on-site. Well worth the money… saves lots of headaches.” – Jason Gray (Source Play Store)
  • Super easy and quick. Not aggravating even when forgetting to punch in & having to do it after the fact. Easy to work the site when logging in with the scanner or login and password.” – Kristen S. (Source G2)
  • Good design, easy to use, intuitive, focused on employee punching in and out. No gimmicks you have to do, no hoops you have to jump through to get it going.” – Mike L. (Source Capterra)

Selected Negative User Feedback: 

  • “I don’t like that the administrator can control and change hours, and the app does not send a message to your email letting you know there has been a change.” – Danijela Alejandra F. (Source G2)
  • App has faults. It resets itself when I hit done after taking pictures. I have to take about a half dozen or more pics before it clocks me in. It mainly happens on punch in but happened once on the punch out” – Christian del Real (Source Play Store)
  • It is hard to correct if you did the wrong punch in or out.” – Norbert F. (Source GetApp)
  • No push notifications for employees to ensure they know when their shift is.” – Chandler G. (Source G2)
  • It would be nice if there were an option for Dark Mode. When working at night, the bright screen can be bothersome, and using an extension to force Dark Mode can sometimes cause problems with functionality.” – Cesar M. (Source G2)
  • The mobile version is a little more limitedThe mobile version doesn’t allow you to schedule time off at all, which limits the use of what you are able to do.” – Haze J. (Source G2)
  • Time Card Approval is a little redundant and repetitive.” – Christina J. (Source Capterra)
  • I feel like there are some visual layout aspects that could be improved – or at least offered as a setting option.” – L. Ana (Source Capterra)
  • The simplicity can go too far in that direction. So it seems a bit sparse at times. There is a lot of dead space on some page landings.” – Tony Factor (Source TrustRadius)
  • Editing the time entries have proven to be quite difficult at the beginning” – Rebeka G. (Source GetApp)
  • (…)the additional step to submit the kiosk time card is time-consuming for the supervisor/managers.” – Tiffany S. (Source Capterra)
  • “I remember when I was unable to clock out at work, so I had to clock out at home, but it was really difficult since I didn’t remember my password.” – Anonymous (Source software advice)
  • Lack of notifications, and no idea for another con.” – Anonymous (Source software advice)
  • Lack of the same functionality via the app as you get on a desktop.” – Anonymous (Source software advice)
  • “There were times where it was buggy and screens would get stuck so that you had to reopen the map and follow a specific procedure to avoid the issue from occurring again.” – Christian R. (Source GetApp)

    What are Buddy Punch's Review Ratings from Review Sites?

    (As of December 2023)

    • Capterra: 4.8/5
    • G2: 4.8/5
    • TrustRadius: 8.2/10
    • GetApp: 4.8/5
    • Play Store: 4.6/5 
    • App Store: 4.9/5 

    What's My Final Verdict on Buddy Punch?

    As we draw this Buddy Punch review to a close, I must say that keeping track of employee hours and managing schedules can be a headache but Buddy Punch sure does have the ability to simplify the process. Its range of features, including time and attendance tracking, employee scheduling, and mobile time tracking make monitoring hours worked easy. 

    The time-tracking function of Buddy Punch is its most notable feature. The software offers manual and automatic time tracking options, which can be customized to meet the unique needs of any business. Its GPS, geofencing functionality, and facial recognition features make it easy to track employee hours accurately and instill a culture of accountability in the entire workforce. 

    However, as promised, this Buddy Punch review is going to be an honest and fair one. Therefore, I must say that like any software, Buddy Punch has its quirks, and some users have reported a couple of pesky issues that cause inconveniences. For starters, editing time entries can be a pain and a real hassle if you need to make changes after the fact. And, let’s be honest, who hasn’t forgotten to clock out at some point? Unfortunately, the mobile application’s bugs can make punching out a real adventure, which is not ideal when you’re trying to log your hours accurately. 

    Despite these limitations, Buddy Punch remains a top contender in the time-tracking software market, and with some tweaks and updates, it has the potential to become even better. So, if you’re looking for a way to streamline your HR processes and save time and money, Buddy Punch is worth a try.

    I hope this Buddy Punch review helps you make the right choice for your business!