It takes a great deal of motivation to start your own business and get your ideas out there. The same holds true if you’re freelancing. You’ve got full control over your time, and this means that you’ve got to be organized and productive to get stuff done on time and quality. It’s no easy task to do, and this guest blog post outlines a couple of apps that may help you out in the process.
Both entrepreneurs and freelancers are known to be non-conformists, people who follow their instincts and avoid dogma. There are lots of challenges they face along their way, and one of the biggest is having enough time to tackle all the issues that arise, to focus on what’s important and be productive all along the way. And here’s where modern technology comes to play.
According to University of Alabama at Birmingham, productivity tools & apps are the fourth most popular type of app. And there’s a reason this is so, although they’re not about entertaining. These types of apps help you better organize your time & activities to be able to tackle important stuff first. By using them, you (and every person in your organization) can focus on what you are best at: innovating. And here are 5 apps that you might find useful.
Your time is the most valuable resource you have at your disposable. TSheets is a cloud-based app you can use to keep track of the time you or your employees / contractors spend on the job. Even when the employee is offline, TSheets claims the app will keep track and synchronize once they’re back online. If the freelancer’s job is location-based, GPS tracking allows you to know where they are. If you’re a freelancer getting paid by the hour, there won’t be any discrepancies on time worked. Available for Android and iOS, TSheets integrates with Intuit Quickbooks, which takes care of payroll.
PocketSuite is useful for both freelancers & solopreneurs since it streamlines all of the technical aspects of running your own business. You can set up your services quickly, schedule appointments with clients, accept credit card payments, and many more. The app syncs with you calendar, your Facebook page and your website, and it automatically reminds you about client appointments. For example, if one of your clients has promised to pay you on a certain date, the app will send an automatic reminder to the client and process the payment (all these without the client having to have the app installed). PocketSuite is available on iOS and it’s free (however, it takes a percentage of each transaction processed within the app).
Organizing all your various notes and scheduling information can take up a lot of your valuable space and time. Evernote is a software suite for documents of all sorts. Save a document in the app, and Evernote makes it easily available on all your devices. If you save an important invoice, or a high priority email, or a slideshow presentation, or a to-do note, it will sync to your smartphone. You can also use Evernote as a place to store uncompleted tasks (“open loops”), which create background noise in your brain. Evernote is available for both Android and iOS.
If you’re a freelancer, you need to know everything about a project. If you’re an entrepreneur, you need your team to be on the same page. Infowrap allows you to create a webpage with a mix of all sorts of information, a “wrap” of contact info, notes, image galleries, location maps, and files. Your team can collaborate, build additional pages, and edit the existing page. Pages are private, but you can make them public if you want them to be reachable via search engines. In 2014, Infowrap developed a mobile application for Android and iOS, so you can develop and edit pages on the go as well.
When it comes to managing time, do you ever wonder how much of your time is wasted on menial tasks? Workflow is about saving the time you tend to spend in excess on those tasks. It integrates with all the apps on your smartphone. With it, you can create shortcut buttons based around different types of tasks. For example, if there are a certain number of contacts you need to outreach via email, you can group all the contacts, your email provider, and a scheduling function under one button. Workflow automates the legwork and you can also make your own app out of workflows. The app is only available for iOS.
Any other tools/apps you use to get organized and enhance your productivity? We’d love to hear out from you.