Most freelancers will confess to feeling lost if they’re separated from their smartphone or tablet – essential tools these days. The ever-growing number of apps makes everyday life and business even easier to organise.
While some apps might be a tad distracting (hello Angry Birds and Words with Friends), others can really save you time and stress, which gives you more space to enjoy the fun bits of freelancing.
Not sure where to start in the quest for freelance-friendly apps? Here are a few of the most useful ones.
You’re probably aware of this freelance marketplace, where jobs are advertised and freelancers can bid for them. It’s a great tool for anyone who offers a service, and the app makes it even easier to search and apply for jobs.
Freelancers often work with several clients on a number of different projects. This can get extremely confusing at times. Weave is a to-do list you can split into categories, projects and tasks. You can also add in expenses and incoming money, which you can assign to a client to keep on top of where you stand.
Tracking your expenses and invoices can be a bit of a bore with freelancing. I like the MyBizTracker app for keeping on top of my incoming money and outgoing costs, and it’s really easy to take a snapshot of my receipts etc. too. I find it really useful when I’m travelling, as I can take a snap of the train ticket once I’ve jumped on the train and that’s my expense done!
One of my favourite apps is Flipboard, a tool that turns all my favourite content into a flippable online magazine. Mine holds all my social media accounts (Twitter, Facebook, G+, YouTube, Tumblr and many more), along with my Google Reader and several industry websites and blogs of interest. It’s the perfect way to flip through everything you want in an easy-to-read format. You can either flip through by section, or flick through the latest updates.
Intuit Pay, with the free mobile app and chip & PIN card reader, makes it easy to get paid securely wherever you are. Pretty essential huh? Especially if you offer a face-to-face service or need a way to take payments over the phone.
Pomodoro is an app based on the popular Pomodoro productivity method. Set the timer for 20 minutes then focus entirely on the task at hand. In fact, I’m using it right now to write this!
Recently, I’ve been using a new app on my iPhone called DailyRoutine. It lets me create, as the name would suggest, daily routines which can be split into lots of sections. It will then alert me when each new section begins. So, for example, I could book in a gym appointment at 8am, reports at 9.30am, blogging at 10-11am and an 11am tea break. Time often runs away from me, so this helps me stay on track and be aware of time.
QuickBooks Mobile is a free app that links to your QuickBooks Online account. Use it to manage your finances from anywhere via your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad – see who owes you money, send invoices, email receipts and more – all without going near a computer. Perfect for keeping on top of your admin between clients, on the train or in a café.
Which apps can you not bear to be without?