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Whether you are new to freelancing or a seasoned professional with a list of regular clients, we’ve compiled a list of must-have apps that all freelancers should have in their professional toolbox.
The main areas every freelancer needs to consider can be handled with these tools, from time and project management to client invoicing and financial record keeping.
Although this is just a short list covering the basics when it comes to tools for freelancers, this is a great starting point for organizing any freelancing career.
A heavy-hitter when it comes to all things digital nomad and even all things online business, Google takes the crown here. Whether you are communicating or sending proposals using Gmail, setting up meetings or conferencing via Hangouts or sharing files and documents via Drive, every freelancer can benefit from the plethora of services Google has to offer.
Plus, everything is streamlined across apps and synced in the Cloud, so you won’t have to worry about losing documents or accessing your files on the go. Group projects or collaborations are made easy in Google’s suite of products. You can’t go wrong with so many perks for free.
We’ve praised this app before – for good reason. Toggl helps you manage your time and offers reliable time-tracking for your clients with just one click. Add the Chrome extension to track time right in the browser as you are working. Toggl will easily compile your data into PDFs or other formats to make invoicing clients a breeze.
You can organize your time and hours by project, client or task, so you can easily prioritize your best earning potential. If real-time tracking isn’t right for the task at hand, Toggl allows manual entries and integrates with your calendars to track scheduled events as part of your time-management system.
You can easily assign billable rates to streamline your invoicing. All of the simple to export files will make any freelancer’s tax season a bit easier. Plus, Toggl offers a 30-day free trial, which is plenty of time to determine how this app can work for your business.
For a more focused file management system, freelancers can get a lot of use out of Dropbox. Although Google Drive also works for file management, Dropbox has a few additional features that make this a handy app for the professional freelancer.
All files are safely and securely synced in the Cloud and easily shared with colleagues and clients. And they offer a number of different plans depending on the space and features you most need. The professional plan offers 3 TB of space, along with features like file watermarking, large file transfers (up to 100 GB) and Dropbox Smart Sync, which syncs your files across all of your devices seamlessly.
Additional features include a remote account wipe, should you ever need it, as well as a 180-day account recovery system. Best of all, you can access your files offline, which makes it ahead of the game in comparison with Google.
Invoicing can be one of the trickier parts of freelancing as it can take up a lot of time that you could be spending on your projects. Wave makes invoicing clients and keeping track of your financials a no-brainer. Plus, it streamlines your look, giving your business a more professional and consistent invoicing system.
You can accept credit card and bank transfer payments within the app, send payment reminders to clients and easily track your income and expenses. Scan receipts and create expense logs for making tax season easier.
You can even manage a payroll system if you outsource any of your work to other independent contractors. This is a one-stop-shop for freelancer financing. Best of all, most of the features mentioned here are free.
There are a lot of project management systems out there. Depending on your level of detail and project complexity, some are better than others. But we are partial to Trello for a few reasons. The user interface of this app is attractive, simple and makes visualizing your upcoming projects easy and uncluttered.
Each card can be enhanced with all of the details you need to manage a project, including adding to-do lists and individual tasks. The Trello board itself lets you simply drag and drop cards onto different slots so you can see where you are on each project and better manage your time.
Plus, unlike some of the other popular project management systems available, Trello lets you access all of these features for free.
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