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SentryPC Review

Skye Schooley
Skye Schooley

For the small business on a budget, SentryPC offers an intuitive, user-friendly solution without all the bells and whistles of many other platforms. It is an affordable option that doesn't skimp on key employee monitoring features. The software is cloud-based, making it easy to implement and maintain. It displays all employee activity in one central location, and its simple search features allow you to easily find the data you need. SentryPC also includes tools to prevent data loss or theft. Best of all, it is inexpensive and easy to implement. For these reasons, SentryPC is our pick for affordable employee monitoring software for small businesses.

SentryPC

SentryPC

The Verdict

SentryPC is our choice for affordable employee monitoring software because it offers important features – such as email monitoring, inactivity alerts and data breach prevention tools – for a low price.

SentryPC

Pricing/Value 8.5/10
Features 8.0/10
Compatible Operating Systems 9.1/10
Ease of Use 9.2/10
Customer Support Options 7.9/10
Editor's Score 8.5/10


SentryPC Pricing and Terms

SentryPC uses a per-device licensing system that is billed annually. Each device you need to monitor requires a license for installing a SentryPC agent, and each license provides access to the full functionality of the software for that specific device. Each plan gives you access to all of the software's features and tools, but higher tiers offer more screenshots. Still, even businesses that subscribe to the Basic plan have access to the full employee monitoring software. Here's an overview of each plan:

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Plan Basic Business 50 Business 100 Business 250 Business 500 Business 1,000
Price $59.95 per year $995 per year $1,595 per year $2,995 per year $3,995 per year $4,995 per year
Licenses included in base price One 50 100 250 500 1,000
Price per additional license $19.95 per year $19.90 per year $15.95 per year $11.98 per year $7.99 per year $4.99 per year
Screenshots included 500 500 1,000 1,000 2,000


If you need more screenshot storage, you can purchase increments of 500 screenshots for a one-time cost of $19.95. The additional storage is valid for the duration of your subscription, thus making long-term subscriptions an even better value.

SentryPC Features

SentryPC has all of the features employers need to monitor employee activity and productivity.

Time Tracking and User Activity

Managers can use SentryPC to track employee hours. They can select which hours employees are allowed to work each day and set maximum employee usage limits for each day or week, which helps to ensure employees don't work overtime. Tracking employee time is important for recordkeeping, but it can also play a key role in ensuring employees have a healthy work-life balance. Employees who work odd hours or excessive overtime can be susceptible to burnout.

Administrators can set maximum employee usage limits.

In addition, you can track employee activity. Admins can see a breakdown of when employees are active and inactive on their devices, making it clear which users are engaged and productive during their work hours.

Website and Application Monitoring

Employers can see which websites, applications and programs their employees are spending their time on. SentryPC records how long the apps and websites were open, the amount of time a user engaged with them, and the date and time they were accessed. You can see any text a user copies to the clipboard, along with a time stamp of when the action occurred. SentryPC tracks each device's IP address and determines the user's geographic location, so you always know exactly where your employees are. This capability can be helpful for tracking off-site employees.

Sample view of SentryPC's location tracking.

Windows users can access additional monitoring features, like time stamps for when a portable drive is inserted into a monitored device. Portable-drive detection is a critical feature for protecting sensitive or proprietary company information that shouldn't be shared. Windows users can also see time file activity logging and time stamps for when files are printed. You can view files – including downloads, uploads, newly created files, opened files and edited files – stored on monitored devices.

FYIFYI: Employers can track websites, applications, programs used, usage time, and where the employee was when the action was logged.

Screenshots and Keystroke Logging

SentryPC employee monitoring software records employee activity in real time with screenshots and keystroke logging. The software takes screenshots of user activity at random intervals during an employee's work time. Each screenshot includes the date and time, and is searchable by user or device. The software tracks everything users do on their keyboards –  including chats and emails – and identifies the date, time and location where users typed.

SentryPC can record screenshots of user activity.

Screenshots and keystroke logging can be incredibly useful for protecting your business and ensuring employee productivity. However, employers and managers should be careful not to accidentally view sensitive employee information, like bank accounts or medical records. To safely take advantage of these features, it is always a good idea to talk with employees about appropriate and inappropriate device usage.

Content Filtering and Blocking

Admins can limit which applications, websites and games employees can access and when. They can block content altogether or choose specific hours when certain content is permitted or blocked for each user. For example, you may want to block access to social media applications and video streaming services during the workday but allow access during lunch and after-hours. You can also filter websites by broad categories and specific URLs, and set up activity alerts by keywords or phrases. If a user attempts to access a blocked activity or violates policies outlined in the administrative settings, the software flags the action, logs it and alerts admins by email. Alert logs can be downloaded, viewed and sorted by user, device, type, activity or time stamp.

SentryPC users can filter and block content like applications, keywords/phrases and websites.

Reports and Notifications

Each activity log that is stored in your cloud account can be downloaded for offline use. The offline capabilities give admins more flexibility in where and how they can use the data. You can view in-depth usage reports detailing what activities are occurring the most, as well as visual charts and screenshots. SentryPC offers reports for various monitoring events, like user activities, alerts, application usage, instant messenger chats, clipboards, events, accessed files, keystrokes, geographic locations, online searches, portable drive usage, print jobs, screenshots, sessions and website usage. This wide variety of reports gives employers and managers a clear view of how their company and individual employees are performing and what changes can be made to improve performance.

SentryPC offers users a variety of activity reports.

SentryPC Pros

There are many reasons we selected SentryPC as one of our best picks for employee monitoring software. For one, because it is cloud-based, you can access your account at any time from any place. Although you can't track your employees' mobile devices, you can access SentryPC on mobile devices to view logs and account information. It displays all employee activity in one central location, and its simple search features prevent a flood of unstructured data. This functionality is ideal for on-the-go managers who need to view employee activity and behavior from various locations. 

We also like that the software has both silent mode and confirmation mode. For in-house employees (including your remote employees who use company computers), you can run the employee monitoring program on silent mode. This means the software will run silently in the background on an employee's device, and the user will not have to do anything to activate it or see it. If you have a contractor or freelancer who will be tracked or monitored only while they work on your projects, you can set it to confirmation mode, which shows the user when they are being monitored. Having the flexibility to switch between these modes is ideal for small businesses with various types of workers. The software also has a time management feature that you can use to keep your freelance budget in check. 

Bottom LineBottom Line:SentryPC is a cloud-based software that can be used in silent or confirmation modes.

SentryPC Cons

One drawback of SentryPC is that it cannot be deployed on mobile devices to track mobile users; the software is designed for Macs and PCs. However, this is an issue only if you are looking for employee monitoring software specifically for mobile devices. Keep in mind that you can still use mobile devices to check SentryPC logs and reports. Its customer support options are also limited; you have to fill out a support ticket and can't reach out directly by phone or live chat.

Customer Support

If you want to learn more about SentryPC software and how to implement it, you can access the company's online resources. For example, there is an integrated support section with documentation to help you install the program, troubleshoot any issues and learn about the finer points of the software. This is especially helpful for new users or those with limited technology experience. SentryPC offers customer support for technical issues through a ticket system, but there is no phone line or live chat channel.

Image Credit: undrey / Getty Images
SentryPC

SentryPC

The Verdict

SentryPC is our choice for affordable employee monitoring software because it offers important features – such as email monitoring, inactivity alerts and data breach prevention tools – for a low price.

Skye Schooley
Skye Schooley
business.com Staff
Skye Schooley is a staff writer at business.com and Business News Daily, where she has written more than 200 articles on B2B-focused topics including human resources operations, management leadership, and business technology. In addition to researching and analyzing products that help business owners launch and grow their business, Skye writes on topics aimed at building better professional culture, like protecting employee privacy, managing human capital, improving communication, and fostering workplace diversity and culture.