Kronos Alternatives for Workforce
Management & Scheduling

Kronos is one of the largest software companies in the world since its merger with Ultimate Software in 2020. Following a rebrand, the two software giants are now known together as the Ultimate Kronos Group, or UKG. UKG provides HCM, payroll, HR, and workforce management solutions for a host of different industries across the globe.

After the merger, all Kronos and Ultimate products were lumped together into the UKG product line. Now, UKG’s three primary solutions are:

  • UKG Pro - Enterprise HCM suite
  • UKG Dimensions - Workforce management for large organizations
  • UKG Ready - Payroll and HR for small to medium-sized businesses

Another product, UKG Workforce Central, also exists, but is being discontinued in favor of UKG Dimensions.

Who should use Kronos (UKG)?

UKG     |     User Reviews

Kronos (UKG) is serviceable for two different types of businesses.

The first kind would be organizations with over 1,000 staff looking for an all encompassing HCM system. For this, they should go with UKG Pro. It offers extensive payroll, HR, talent management, benefits administration, and HRIS reporting.

The second kind would be mid-sized businesses in need of detailed payroll and HR functionality. UKG Ready fulfills this need well, offering a wide range of features with less of the complexity that comes with UKG Pro.

However, Kronos (UKG) may not be the best fit for everyone, particularly if you are looking to equip your business with a user-friendly and agile workforce management solution.

Where Kronos (UKG) Falls Short on Workforce Management & Scheduling

Kronos (UKG) prioritizes HR and payroll. As such, workforce management falls on the back burner, which might be a deal-breaker for some organizations looking to level up their scheduling and time tracking.

For enterprise-level businesses looking at UKG Pro, they may want to consider pairing it with a specialized workforce management solution to handle their large and complex scheduling needs.

Smaller businesses should also look to pair UKG Ready with a scalable workforce management platform, as UKG Ready mostly just handles smaller-scale payroll and human resources.

There are several reasons why Kronos (UKG) may not be the perfect all-in-one HCM and workforce management solution you’ve been looking for. Some of the reasons for this include:

  • Limited scheduling: managers find their hands tied with Kronos’ scheduling as it lacks a strong integration with time and attendance, meaning they don’t have full access to real-time demand and attendance metrics before, during, and after shifts, limiting their ability to lower wage costs and improve productivity.

  • Not user-friendly: Users find the interface difficult to manage compared to alternatives, making it harder for management to engage staff and roll out the system in a timely manner.

  • Poor data security: Has issues with data security and site reliability, recently suffering a ransomware data breach that resulted in a mass system outage for several weeks.

  • Complex feature suite: Its large feature suite is extremely siloed and confusing to use at times, resulting in a high learning curve for businesses under 10,000 staff.

  • No real-time data: You can't get real-time scheduling and attendance data during a shift, so managers are left blind to important changes they could make on schedules throughout the day.

  • Intimidating implementation: Small businesses without multifaceted, dedicated HRIS teams may find Kronos difficult to implement and manage compared to alternatives.

  • Lengthy training time: Staff will require training on the platform to receive the full benefit of the Kronos solution.

  • Overly complicated data: Vast amounts of data add complexity for managers seeking answers to simple questions.

Kronos Alternatives

Understandably, some of Kronos' (UKG) shortcomings may make the platform unattractive to certain businesses - that's where its alternatives come in. If workforce management is a priority to you, it may be best to consider some of the following alternatives to Kronos (UKG).     |     User Reviews

Hosted in the cloud, is the best alternative to Kronos for businesses seeking an all-in-one HR and workforce management solution for hourly workers. Designed for mid-sized to enterprise-level hospitality, retail, and healthcare businesses seeking to schedule based on demand, gain real-time shift insights for staffing changes, reduce manual work, stay ahead of labor costs, remain compliant, and increase profitability.

As a dedicated workforce management platform, combines time and attendance with employee scheduling in a single, integrated system; this results in extremely robust and accurate workforce analytics for your business. Extensive BI reporting, leave management, labor compliance, and onboarding features further complement the platform. features a desktop version as well as an employee app on both IOS and android. It’s an ideal solution for those looking for the same level of configuration Kronos offers without the complicated implementation, high cost, and steep learning curve that comes with it.

Where Kronos (UKG) falls short in workforce management, excels. Its all-in-one system for scheduling, time tracking, and attendance leads the SaaS industry, and is used by businesses everywhere to optimize staffing according to customer demand. The platform boasts high-quality integrations with HRIS and payroll providers like Kronos (UKG), seamlessly complementing any HCM systems already in place.

Frontline teams often choose to handle their workforce management based on several key benefits:

  • Scheduling driven by customer demand: Sales, foot traffic, and event data are used to forecast demand, helping managers create schedules that accurately match labor to demand on any given day.

  • One-Click Scheduling: Industry-leading machine learning uses historical sales, wage cost, weather, and attendance data to automatically build schedules and populate shifts in a single click. As it continually schedules and collects data, it becomes smarter and more accurate.

  • Shift feedback: real-time feedback helps managers identify and resolve employee issues before they get out of hand, reducing turnover and increasing engagement.

  • Custom BI-reporting: Transparent and intuitive visibility into front-line data gives C-suite execs a bigger picture of their operations, with real-time dashboards and customizable business intelligent reports for the metrics that matter most.

  • Actionable insights: Leading Indicators™ map labor costs to sales in real time, alerting frontline managers to potential overtime and providing them with actionable metrics to control SPLH.

  • Payroll & HCM integrations: A team of engineers develop and maintain a comprehensive family of payroll software and HCM integrations, ensuring smooth timesheet export and consistent employee data syncs.

  • Wage & hour compliance library: Scheduling and time tracking is backed by an extensive compliance library consisting of wage & hour laws from across all 50 states.

  • Agile shift replacement: staff may swap shifts with managerial approval and managers can offer up open shifts for best-fit employees to claim. Pricing: Built for ROI offers two pricing plans for mid-market to enterprise-sized clients, both designed to maximize ROI. Depending on the plan selected, you gain full access to the features presented and any subsequent features rolled out. There are no extra fees or expensive add-ons hidden within the three plans.

To really explore the platform and decide for yourself, you can sign up for a free 14 day trial with unlimited access and no obligations.

Book a call today if you want to find out more about and its features.


ADP     |     User Reviews

Very similar to Kronos (UKG), ADP is a large, cloud-based HR and payroll provider. They offer a number of different platforms, each geared towards a specific business size and each featuring multiple pricing levels. Most prominent among ADP’s offerings are ADP Run (small businesses), ADP Workforce Now (Midsize businesses), and ADP Vantage (Enterprise).

Key features

  • Payroll systems designed to accommodate different company sizes

  • Time tracking and scheduling for small businesses

  • Tax management

  • Insurance and benefits administration

  • Absence management

Use cases

  • Healthcare, non-profit, and IT

  • Handling large quantities of payroll and HR metrics

  • Gaining detailed insight into HRIS analytics

  • Basic workforce management for small businesses

With ADP you get the ease of payroll and HR in one place but lack detailed workforce management tools and analytics. While they do have basic scheduling and attendance, it’s really only designed for small businesses, which is why ADP integrates with specialized solutions like

While ADP products are good choices for payroll depending on your business size, you will need to pair them with something else for employee scheduling and attendance if you have more than 20 staff.

Ceridian Dayforce

Dayforce     |     User Reviews

Dayforce is a cloud-based enterprise HCM software provided by Ceridian. Similar to Kronos (UKG), Dayforce specializes in payroll, human resources, and HRIS, with workforce management being an additional resource offered.

Key features

  • Secure document management system

  • Advanced HR analytics

  • Dayforce Wallet for on-demand pay

  • Employee flight risk analysis

  • Basic time tracking and scheduling

  • Extensive talent management and acquisition

Use cases

  • Retail, healthcare, and financial services

  • Payroll, HR, and workforce management in a single HCM system

  • Desire for extremely detailed HR analytics capabilities

  • Focusing on employee engagement and retention

As an alternative to Kronos (UKG), Ceridian Dayforce fulfills some needs better than others. The platform provides detailed HRIS capabilities, with its specialties being talent acquisition and benefits management. Outside of HRIS, Dayforce may not be the right option for those looking for granular workforce management data, smart scheduling, or comprehensive payroll.


Paychex     |     User Reviews

While Paychex offers integrated HCM solutions for time tracking, human resources, and workforce management, it mostly specializes in payroll processing and business insurance management.

Key features

  • Tailored payroll solutions depending on business size

  • Mobile payroll processing

  • 401k recordkeeping

  • Time and attendance via a Paychex kiosk device or mobile app

  • Payroll integrated insurance policies

Use cases

  • Construction, healthcare, and real estate

  • Small to medium-size businesses

  • Requiring detailed payroll and insurance data all in one place

  • Flexibility in how and where payroll is processed

Paychex is a great alternative to Kronos (UKG) if you are looking for top-of-the-line payroll and insurance services. However, where Paychex falls short is in workforce management. You won’t get real-time labor cost metrics, shift differentials, or overtime alerts. Moreover, Paychex’s scheduling tool is not very intuitive.


Infor     |     User Reviews

Infor is an all-in-one modular ERP system that offers a range of enterprise-level tools for human capital management and product lifecycle management.

Key features

  • All-in-one enterprise resource planning

  • Supply chain and warehouse management

  • Advanced configure price quote capabilities

  • Detailed HCM analytics

Use cases

  • Manufacturing, oil and gas, distribution

  • Large, multinational organizations

  • Looking for rigid, traditional ERP for long term stability and results

Infor is a great alternative to Kronos (UKG) if you are in the manufacturing or distribution industry. It comes with extremely detailed supply chain management tools that easily integrate directly with additional Infor modules. However, Infor’s cost and implementation are very daunting, and when paired with an out-of-date interface, it makes for an unwieldy Kronos alternative for small to mid-sized companies looking for intuitive workforce management.

Time Doctor

Time Doctor     |     User Reviews

Time Doctor is a specialized time tracking software solution based in the cloud.

Key features

  • Detailed attendance and timesheet reports

  • Time tracking via an app

  • Employee screenshot monitoring

  • Payroll integration

Use cases

  • Education, marketing and advertising, IT services

  • Needing more in-depth and specialized visibility into time and attendance

  • Small to mid-size remote workforces

If every part of Kronos (UKG) works for you save for the time tracking, then consider Time Doctor. It exclusively offers a time and attendance solution, nothing more. As such, you’ll need to integrate it with HR, payroll, and workforce management. The biggest shortcoming of Time Doctor is that it does not offer hourly employee scheduling with its time tracking. Because of this, you cannot map wage cost data to forecasted demand in real-time, see variances between actual and scheduled wage costs on timesheets, or react to attendance and overtime issues throughout the day.


Paycor     |     User Reviews

Paycor is an HCM system specializing in solutions for payroll and human resources. Like Kronos (UKG), Paycor offers a wide array of packages and products to meet all your basic business needs.

Key features

  • Tax calculation and processing

  • Simple payroll

  • Pulse surveys

  • Career management

Use cases

  • IT, healthcare, non-profits

  • Mid-market payroll and HR simplicity

  • Building employee experience

ITax and payroll processing through Paycor are excellent; unfortunately, when it comes to workforce management, Paycor does not measure up well against Kronos (UKG) and other competitors. Time and attendance and scheduling are little more than afterthoughts to otherwise extensive HR and payroll packages, offering little in the way of BI reporting or automation. The system is best used only as a replacement for Kronos’ payroll and HR software.

When I Work

When I Work     |     User Reviews

When I Work is a simple, cloud-based workforce management platform for time tracking and scheduling. As a system with limited scope, it must be integrated with your payroll and HCM platforms via open API.

Key features

  • Mobile time clock app

  • Timesheets & payroll integration

  • Team messaging

  • Employee shift scheduling

Use cases

  • Hospitality, food & beverage, retail industries

  • SMB employee self-service

When I Work is a user-friendly scheduling and time tracking solution for small businesses. However, as an all-in-one workforce management system, When I Work may not be the best alternative as it doesn’t scale for businesses with over 50 employees.


BambooHR     |     User Reviews

A simple and intuitive HRIS, BambooHR assists small businesses with their HR management without getting bogged down in the complexities that usually come with highly tailored HCM or ERP systems.

Key features

  • Applicant tracking system (ATS)

  • Employee experience tools

  • Absence and leave management

  • Performance management

Use cases

  • Marketing & advertising, computer software, non-profit industries

  • SMB human resources and payroll

  • User-friendly employee self-service

While BambooHR offers organized and user-friendly human resource management, it is small in scale and limited in scope. You cannot schedule, track time and attendance, or manage labor compliance with BambooHR like you can with workforce management solutions. BambooHR is a decent alternative to Kronos for small businesses in need of an HR solution, but it needs to be paired with a system like for scheduling and time tracking.


Shiftboard     |     User Reviews

Shiftboard is a specialized scheduling platform tailored to suit specific industry needs. The SaaS offers two products: SchedulePro, designed for the production and manufacturing industries, and ScheduleFlex, designed for the service industry.

Key features

  • Auto-fill open shifts

  • OT detection and equalization

  • Plant and unit-specific staffing requirements

  • Workforce compliance

Use cases

  • Oil & gas, manufacturing, corrections, and energy

  • Supporting industry-specific scenarios like production line changes and emergency response team assignment

  • Managing union agreements and fatigue standards compliance

While great for scheduling in niche industries, Shiftboard does not fulfill anywhere near the same number of business needs as other Kronos (UKG) competitors - meaning it must be integrated with many additional platforms. Its time and attendance, leave management, and demand planning is rudimentary at best, and it lacks payroll and HRIS capabilities. For businesses seeking more comprehensive workforce management data, Shiftboard may not be the best alternative to Kronos (UKG).