It is common knowledge that telecommuting is on the rise. Cloud platforms have eliminated the need for brick and mortar offices and the high overhead costs that go along with traditional business practices. However, freelancers are also taking advantage of new technology and the amazing opportunities that are rising in this innovative era of commerce.
As of 2014, a study found that more than 53 million Americans are doing freelance work and account for more than 34% of the entire workforce. Additionally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the average employer cost is $29.71 per employee per hour, with roughly 70% of that accounting for wage and 30% for employee benefits. Freelancers eliminate that extra 30% expense and therefore are becoming more attractive to employers.
However, there are a few downsides to this freedom of enterprise. You have to be your own marketing team, project manager, accountant, and a specialist at job hunting. Fortunately, a spreadsheet app can help with maintaining impeccable organization. Here’s how:
At any given time a freelancer can have a variety of clients. Each client has his or her own contact information, guidelines, pay scale, and timeline. Not only that, but there are the timesheets to maintain, invoices to send out, and tracking to see who has paid and who has an outstanding bill. It can easily be overwhelming to work on a project AND maintain the bookkeeping that comes with it.
With a spreadsheet app, a freelancer can keep a mobile running time clock whenever he or she conducts onsite meetings, has a teleconference, or even just works from a local coffee shop. This aids in staying on or under budget and helps to track each individual client without the hassle opening a separate spreadsheet for each one.
App creators can help you to create a task checklist and running expense sheet. For example, let’s say you are an interior designer. You can create a spreadsheet listing each room that you are decorating and the items that are needed to complete it. As you shop, you have a mobile checklist along with a running expense list so you can get exactly what you need while staying aware of your expenditures. Furthermore, you can add pictures of tiles, floor samples, and paint chips so that everything coordinates.
Finally, a freelancer’s life can be terribly unstable. One month you can have more work than you can handle and the next you are combing through job sites pitching for projects. With a mobile app, you can create a contact list with past, present and potential clients along with extensive notes tracking your communication with them. When work becomes sparse you can reconnect with these individuals and make notes so you don’t accidentally pester the same client two weeks in a row. Moreover, if you get a call or e-mail from a contact while you are on the go, you can immediately log in the information so you won’t forget to later.
A freelancer may be extremely talented, but their business will only be as successful as their organizational skills allow them to be. Miss a project deadline, forget to send out invoices, or going over budget will greatly hurt your credibility and reputation. A mobile app can provide you with the right tools so that you can keep your focus and successfully complete each project.