5 Reasons Deputy Sucks

July 2023

Deputy is a scheduling, timesheet, and timeclock software that promises to take care of your employee admin needs like a trusty second-in-command so you can focus on the more essential things for your business. However, it doesn’t quite live up to its name and at times, acts like a really bad sheriff — tracking and scheduling can be a nightmare, pay calculations might be complicated and incorrect, exporting data and syncing with other apps can be troublesome, geofencing is not accurate, mobile apps don’t offer full functionality and customer service is reportedly horrible. 

Let’s take a look at the five worst things users warned us against Deputy, shall we?

Glitchy Performance

Woman in office setting stressed over her laptop by Elisa Ventur on Unsplash.

For software that boasts of so many features to help you lessen admin load, it’s ironic that Deputy would be often reported to have negative performance issues such as a glitchy and slow loading system.

Glitchy and slow systems are a bane to any business, as they cause unnecessary delays and frustration among users — the complete opposite of what Deputy promises. From my experience, incidents include glitches with integrations, failure to track OT hours reliably and classifying them as regular hours instead, difficulty copying and pasting schedules and preferences being overridden by pre-programmed schedule options, and significant lag in grabbing, starting, and ending shifts. It also encounters some difficulties in locating employees and managing large, complex, and multi-location operations.

Mobile Trouble

Bearded young Caucasian man wearing a light blue shirt looking at his mobile phone and showing signs of frustration by cookie_studio on Freepik.

Deputy boasts of getting you on top of every situation even while you’re on the go, but that is not quite the case.

The best way to use it is on a kiosk, or on Google Chrome, but that is not ideal for everyone. The mobile app offers limited functionality for even the most basic admin operations, such as offering an open shift or approving timesheets. The scheduling feature is difficult to use on mobile devices or tablets, and if you’re using Android, luck is not on your side as you only get half of its functionality — it doesn’t even allow you to see the News Feed!

Limited Functionality as an HR Tool

A frustrated male office worker with a short beard wearing eyeglasses, office ID on a red lanyard, and dark teal longsleeved shirt showing extreme frustration and holding his head with both hands.

While it does have some remarkable capabilities, Deputy falls short as an optimal HR tool. 

These include the limitation of features on the Scheduling and Attendance & Time Tracking package variants. Auto-scheduling and meal and break planning are not available for the Attendance and Time Tracking package, while timesheets and payroll integration are missing from the Scheduling package. Both packages also lack a robust reporting feature, which is only available for the higher-tier Premium and Enterprise packages. 

And unless you are using the Enterprise package for a company with 250 employees or more, the labor forecasting feature is not available. And speaking of Deputy’s forecaster, it uses a dated and limited method for forecasting demand which is based on historical sales averages, instead of the more intuitive AI forecasters that take other factors such as trends, weather, and events into consideration, which helps you optimize shifts and staff scheduling better.

In addition to that, Deputy doesn’t have recruiting and payroll modules, offers limited project management and invoicing tools, and has a cumbersome process of publishing copied shifts and timesheet management for absent employees, among others. 

Language Barriers

A frustrated Asian woman in an office setting bites her pencil while staring at a laptop by Jeshoots Com on Unsplash.

For globally available software, Deputy has a very limited range of supported languages. It only lists English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Indonesian, and Vietnamese among its supported languages, and only its iOS and Android mobile apps support all twelve.

I was disappointed to see even more limitations among the platforms. Deputy Kiosk for iOS does not support Thai, Indonesian, and Vietnamese, while its time clock for Android and its web application only supports English. 

Hidden Fees

Close-up photo of hands with wrist-length black sleeves holding money on the left and a smartphone on the right in front of a laptop on a light blue background by pvproductions on Freepik.

Unlike competitor software, Deputy does not have free plans, though they offer a free trial period for up to a month. Prices for their Scheduling and Time & Attendance package variants begin at $3.50 per user per month, and the Premium package is at $4.90 per user per month, which seems to give you quite the bang for your buck.

However, there are surprising additional customization costs to tailor-fit the software to your specific needs, and there is a minimum spend requirement of $25 monthly per invoice. They also charge for admins who don’t use the app, and if you think inactive employees won’t rack up any bills, they would cost you $0.50 per week each.

This slew of hidden fees is not friendly for smaller businesses. For a fraction of the price and without the surprise fees, they can get similar software with equivalent or even better features… or better yet, get the same power without paying a single cent with free time tracking software like Jibble.


Clearly, many issues plague Deputy and they can do better in so many areas. However, it does have its redeeming qualities, such as dynamic reporting, seamless integration, break compliance, and employee engagement features. If you’re still on the fence about deciding which software would suit your company best, try checking out our list of top time tracking software for 2023 to help you out.

And since you’re already here, why don’t you read our Honest Review: Deputy where we give our final verdict on Deputy?