Most project management tools are meant for people running larger teams of 5+ people. If you’re using them as a solo freelancer without any team members to manage, they can be a little clunky & overwhelming. But there are several tools that can help you run your business & your projects as a solo freelancer–here are five:
Price: Free 14-day trial, $24/month for Freelancer plan
Features: Planscope goes a step beyond basic project/task management and adds in features–most of them related to proposal creation–that will be incredibly helpful for service-based freelancers. It allows you to track time spent on tasks (and sync to your invoicing tool of choice), communicate with your clients (and automatically keep them updated on project progress, if you so choose), and it also includes detailed reporting and forecasting features.
Ideal for: Freelancers and consultants who work in industries where a lot of client communication is required. Especially ideal for solopreneurs whose businesses might grow into more of an agency style setup with time.
Price: Free version, one time fee of $20 for pro version
Features: Klok lets you keep track of how your time is being spent and which tasks and projects it’s being spent on, laid out in a calendar format (with color coding!). It also connects to popular invoicing tools, including Freshbooks and Harvest.
Ideal for: Freelancers who have a tendency to “lose time” throughout their workday, who have especially billable time, and who want a visual view of where, exactly, they’re spending it.
Price: Free beta at the moment
Features: Solo aims to be an all-in-one solution for freelancers, so it covers time-tracking, visual overview of projects and milestones, automated invoicing, and reporting of business metrics (profit, hours spent, etc.).
Ideal for: Creative freelancers who want an all-in-one spot to manage their business–not just project management, but billing/invoicing and time tracking as well.
Price: Free 14-day trial, $10/month after that
Features: Flow has task lists, repeating tasks, task list templates (for repeating projects), the ability to add notes, comments, and files to tasks, and an intuitive, easy-to-use interface that features drag-and-drop functionality with tasks and lists. You can view tasks through several ways, including by task list or folder, list view, and week, month, or day view (all with the same drag and drop functionality). There’s also easy to use apps for iOS and Mac.
Ideal for: A freelancer who has projects that tend to follow the same steps, as the task list templates will save you time and energy. The week/month calendar views are especially useful to see when you’re overloading yourself with tasks on a particular day and correct accordingly.
Price: Free or $5/month for Pro (ability to attach files to tasks, assign tasks to others, unlimited subtasks, and new backgrounds)
Features: Wunderlist appears to be a fairly simple task management tool at first glance, but it’s actually much more than that. You can create different lists to manage and sort your tasks (by client or by project, for example), add subtasks to tasks, and add notes for tasks, along with the usual features like deadlines, recurring tasks, reminders, and prioritizing via starring.
Ideal for: The freelancer who likes both working within GTD-inspired tools and gorgeous design.
Now that you've got your project management sorted, check out these other tools for freelancers: 30 Essential Tools and Web Apps for Freelancers