The idea of being a freelancer is the core aspiration for the Millennial generation. Besides the hard-to-get unicorn startups, this generation is after the tons of perks that come with working on your own. Just a picture where the freelancer is relaxing by the beach typing at a laptop happily is something to die for. There are no more managers to sentence you to energy-draining tasks and no more hours wasted in traffic. There’s only you, the laptop, and the world.
However, to get to this harmonious point, every freelancer needs to create a strict and optimized workflow. Being your own boss will trigger a brand new set of responsibilities. It is your duty now to find clients, collaborate with them, create their projects, and negotiate terms and prices.
To manage these responsibilities in due course, many successful workers resort to optimized schedules. This kind of workflows enables a good time management by allocating a specific amount of time for a particular responsibility. In time, the working hours will turn into a well-oiled routine that handles each issue at the right time. This is when freelancers have all the technicalities planned out, which allows them time to travel the world or take up new hobbies while working. Let’s see how you can streamline your own workflow.
1. Quality Internet Connection
It’s not by chance that the word “freelancer” has the term “free” in it. They are no longer subject to any external authority. Once self-employed, people can take vacations anytime they want and work as long as they can.
Nowadays, the one thing that keeps freelancers connected with their contacts is the Internet. Phone calls alone can prove to be too exhausting when you have to discuss tens of details with your clients throughout the day. Consequently, you shouldn’t look at the price when comparing Internet plans but seek the best quality. You can always secure a safe and strong Internet connection while cutting on the expenses someplace else.
2. Find a Project Management Tool that Works for You
Instead of an authority figure who guides you in the world of freelancing, you can project your own voice in the future to tell you what to do and when to do it. For that, you need good project management software to track performance. Here’s what you should look for in quality software:
- Intuitive Calendar. Once you schedule every important detail, the duty of a good calendar is to keep you informed on future events. So, if you assign one day to plan all of them ahead for one month, for the remaining time you will be able to rely on the calendar to tell you when to start and finish your tasks.
- Task Management. A good task management feature will project the hours you need to complete each inserted task. Here you can easily prioritize and monitor your professional activity without the need for a supervisor.
- Sharing Features. The age of mail delivery is long gone. Now you can simply send your digital work over to your clients, saving up time and financial resources. It is important for a project management program to offer a sharing option, in order to eliminate the need to resort to other tools or apps.
- Time tracking. Monitoring how much time you spend on tasks will help you make better management decisions in the future. You can analyze the external factors that damage your performance and eliminate them. This way, you will ensure a more efficient workflow.
3. Find a Quality Invoicing Program
The reason freelancers need an invoicing program is due to the fact that it offers the ability to keep track of their accounting responsibilities. Every business needs a book to note all transactions. As freelancing is most of the time a one-person show, the accounting responsibility may rest on your shoulders. However, many good online invoicing programs can take up this duty for you.
They can offer many features, like online payment options, inventory tracking, sales tax, recurring invoices, automatic receipts, client portal, quotes, and many others. Decide what you need and let the software do the accounting job for you.
4. Backup Your Work
The online world is full of dangers that can put your lifelong work in jeopardy. There are many computer viruses out there looking for the perfect door to attack your data. There are also other dangerous hazards such as computer crash, power shortage, and cyber attacks. Without some safety measures, freelancers can wake up one day with all their results lost.
So, to eliminate such stressful concerns, you should plan your own safety net. Invest in a quality hard drive to perform an offline backup. In cases when it might be stolen, you can back it up with online storage services. Google Drive is a good option here as it grants you access to 15 GB of free storage with the option to upgrade your account to unlock more space for your work.
So, these are the four ugly truths that make the freelancing job harder than it looks. However, with the right sidekicks by your side, you can optimize the workflow and even automate most of your duties thanks to online programs.
Image source: 1