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5 Simple Time Tracking and Invoicing Tips for Freelancers

5 Simple Time Tracking and Invoicing Tips for Freelancers

Time is money and wasted time is nothing but loss of money. Similarly, managing time is one of the most difficult tasks for freelancers. So when you are working on something you love, time will fly by before you realize and your working hours are over. But the client’s budget does not goes hand in hand with all the time you have spent, putting you in a sticky situation.

Following is a list of proficient time-tracking tools you can use to keep track of time constraints, projects and billable hours. These tools help one to manage their time in a better way and let you know how much time you have spent on different projects. By keeping track of time, you will not only maximize profit but also save time for other activities.

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Invoiceberry

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    InvoiceBerry is an online service which helps you to send, create and manage invoices online without the need to download any software. Once signed up, the user will receive a company specific login page where they can create an invoice within seconds. InvoiceBerry allows you to email, post or download invoices directly from your account. You need not print and post invoices any more. Architects, Freelancers, web designers, journalists, musicians, and small to medium sized business owners and producers use invoiceberry. It offers a 100% free plan for businesses which have up to 3 clients. If you have more clients then a monthly fee is charged. As financial information and invoices needs to be handled with care all company logins and accounts have 256-bit AES SSL encryption.

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    Cashboard

    Cashboard is an invoicing software app that handles employee estimates, timesheets, and online payments. It’s mainly catered to small businesses and freelancers. Cashboard is software that runs in the cloud and is always synchronized. Cashboard runs in all web browsers and on your iPad, iPhone or Android device. Data is always synchronized between clients that access the application. Cashboard ties up all business entities together, which helps you to stay on top of everything from identifying clients which have accepted proposals, to those who have not paid yet.

    InerTrak

    InerTrak is a time tracking tool for contract workers, designers, lawyers etc who work a number of projects on an hourly basis. It lets you keeps track of the time you’re spending on different projects throughout the day automatically; all you have to do is click the start and stop timers. One can create a list of clients that you are working for, along with an optional hourly rate. Each project is tagged to a particular client, which also has hourly rates that are used to calculate the value for time spent. The detailed view of each project shows the daily totals of money and time. Dates are added automatically when one starts the timer. You can mail InerTrak data to yourself in CSV format and view data locally by copying and pasting the data into Excel or any other program that understands CSV format.

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    Daylite

    Daylite is a centralized, contact management and comprehensive business application that is designed to help keep track of your employees and prep for new business, current business, and make sure you don’t miss anything related to clients – from birthdays to project management. Daylite is designed to be used on devices like iOS and Mac OS. The application is a combination of contact, task manager and calendar that integrates well with Apple Mail and many other applications. It’s more like a CRM.

    Dovico

    Dovico Timesheet is used to monitor invoices, timesheets and expenses for teams, departments, and employees based on costs, time, tasks and projects. It has two main functions: expense and time entry views used by employees, and administrative functions used by managers for creating project assignment to employees, reporting and monitoring. The software reminds employees to enter timesheets regularly. The software also provides productivity feedback on a continual basis to increase efficiency.

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    After all, we are here to earn money rather than writing just for fun. It’s better to make use of above mentioned tools to make sure you are having some benefit out.

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    Abhay Jeet Mishra

    Writer at Lifehack & Enterested.com

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    Last Updated on September 18, 2019

    15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done

    15 Best Organizing Tips For Office Organization and Getting More Done

    You may think that you don’t have time for office organization, but if you really knew how much time that disorganization cost you, you’d reconsider.

    Rearranging and moving piles occasionally doesn’t count. Neither does clearing off your desk, if you swipe the mess into a bin, or a desk drawer.

    A relatively neat and orderly office space clears the way for higher productivity and less wasted time.

    Organizing your office doesn’t have to take days, it can be done a little at a time. In fact, maintaining an organized office is much more effective if you treat it like an on-going project, instead of a massive assault.

    So, if you’re ready to get started, the following organizing tips will help you transform your office into an efficient workspace.

    1. Purge Your Office

    De-clutter, empty, shred, get rid of everything that you don’t need or want. Look around. What haven’t you used in a while?

    Take one area at a time. If it doesn’t work, send it out for repair or toss it. If you haven’t used it in months and can’t think of when you’ll actually need it, out it goes. This goes for furniture, equipment, supplies, etc.

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    Don’t forget about knick-knacks, plants (real or artificial), and decorations – if they’re covered with dust and make your office look shabby, they’re fair game.

    2. Gather and Redistribute

    Gather up every item that isn’t where it belongs and put it where it does.

    3. Establish Work “Zones”

    Decide what type of activity happens in each area of your office. You’ll probably have a main workspace (most likely your desk,) a reference area (filing cabinet, shelves, binders,) and a supply area (closet, shelves or drawers.)

    Place the appropriate equipment and supplies are located in the proper area as much as possible.

    4. Close Proximity

    Position the equipment and supplies that you use most within reach. Things that you rarely use can be stored or put away.

    5. Get a Good Labeler

    Choose a label maker that’s simple to use. Take the time to label shelves, bins, baskets drawers. Not only will it remind you where things go, but it will also help others who may have a need to find, use, or put away anything in your workspace.

    6. Revise Your Filing System

    As we move fully into the digital age, the need to store paper files has decreased.

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    What can your store digitally? Are you duplicating files? You may be able to eliminate some of the files and folders you’ve used in the past. If you’re storing files on your computer, make sure you are doing regular back-ups.

    Here’re some storage ideas for creating a smooth filing system:

    • Create a meeting folder – Put all “items to be discussed” in there along with items that need to be handed off, reports that need to be given, etc. It’ll help you be prepared for meetings and save you stress in the even that a meeting is moved up.
    • Create a WOR folder – So much of our messy papers are things that are on hold until someone else responds or acts. Corral them in a WOR (Waiting on Response) folder. Check it every few days for outstanding actions you may need to follow-up on.
    • Storage boxes – Use inexpensive storage boxes to keep archived files and get them out of your current file space.
    • Magazine boxes – Use magazine boxes or binders to store magazines and catalogs you really want to store. Please make sure you really need them for reference or research, otherwise recycle them, or give away.
    • Reading folder – Designate a file for print articles and documents you want to read that aren’t urgent.
    • Archive files – When a project is complete, put all of the materials together and file them away. Keep your “working folders” for projects in progress.
    • File weekly – Don’t let your filing pile up. Put your papers in a “To File” folder and file everything once a week.

    Learn more tips on organizing your files here: How to Organize Your Files for Better Productivity

    7. Clear off Your Desk

    Remove everything, clean it thoroughly and put back only those items that are essential for daily use.

    If you have difficulty declutter stuff, this Declutter Formula will help you throw away stuff without regretting later.

    8. Organize your Desktop

    Now that you’ve streamlined your desktop, it’s a good idea to organize it.

    Use desktop organizers or containers to organize the items on your desk. Use trays for papers, containers for smaller items.

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    Don’t forget your computer desktop! Make sure the files or images are all in organized folders. I’d recommend you clear your computer desktop everyday before you leave work.

    9. Organize Your Drawers

    Put items used together in the same drawer space, stamps with envelopes, sticky pads with notepads, etc.

    Use drawer organizers for little items – paper clips, tacks, etc. Use a separate drawer for personal items.

    10. Separate Inboxes

    If you work regularly with other people, create a folder, tray, or inbox for each.

    11. Clear Your Piles

    Hopefully with your new organized office, you won’t create piles of paper anymore, but you still have to sort through the old ones.

    Go through the pile (a little at a time if necessary) and put it in the appropriate place or dump it.

    12. Sort Mails

    Don’t just stick mail in a pile to be sorted or rifle through and take out the pieces you need right now. Sort it as soon as you get it – To act, To read, To file, To delegate or hand off. .

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    13. Assign Discard Dates

    You don’t need to keep every piece of paper indefinitely. Mark on files or documents when they can be tossed or shredded.

    Some legal or financial documents must be kept for specified length of time. Make sure you know what those requirements are.

    14. Filter Your Emails

    Some emails are important to read, others are just not that important.

    When you use the filter system to label different types of emails, you know their priority and which to reply first.

    Take a look at these tips to achieve inbox zero: The Ultimate Way to get to Inbox Zero

    15. Straighten Your Desk

    At the end of the day, do a quick straighten, so you have a clean start the next day.

    Bottom Line

    Use one tip or try them all. The amount of effort you put into creating and maintaining an efficient work area will pay off in a big way.

    Instead of spending time looking for things and shuffling piles, you’ll be able to spend your time…well…working and you’ll enjoy being clutter free!

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    Featured photo credit: Alesia Kazantceva via unsplash.com

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