Still using pen and paper? We don’t blame you, sometimes it’s the best way with so many softwares, websites and apps out there on the market, many of which don’t have the specific functionality that a small business owner needs. But fear not! It’s a new year and the tech offering has never been so strong.
Along with our new website we’re embracing the tech solutions and we’ve put together a top 5 which we think will really help you run your freelance, contractor, locum or SME business.
- Google Drive. While the Microsoft desktop counterparts: Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook have the edge in terms of functionality, the free suite offered by Google is a close second. Comprising of Docs, Sheets, Slides and, of course, Mail, the truly brilliant thing about Google Drive is that so long as you have an internet connection, every single change is auto saved and you can access your documents from any computer, anywhere. So remember the times when you’d spent hours on that spreadsheet and your computer crashed – Google Drive will have kept it safe for you. The other great advantage of using docs is that multiple people can work on the same file at the same time, you can even share a link that lets someone else access the file you’re working on – collaboration is so simple with Google Drive. Just associate your current work email address with a Gmail account and you’re ready to go! More info on this link.
- Toggl. In the business world, time means money. Time-keeping is important for all businesses, whether you’re a freelancer wanting to keep track of how long you spend on each client or a medium sized business who needs to crunch the data to ensure the team is productive. Toggl is a brilliant on-line/app solution, which is free for teams of up to 5 people. Simple to set up and easy to use, just set up a project and then time each task as you complete it. With a handy reporting feature it’s simple to see why so many contractors, freelancers and locums rely on Toggl. Click here to give it a go.
- Business Model Fiddle. How important is having a business model? Vital. If you’ve thought about putting it all down on paper but just haven’t got around to it, why not put it all down in Fiddle instead? Fiddle is so easy to use, select a ready-made template or create your own model from scratch, share your business model with colleagues. With templates ready to go carefully crafted by experts, such as Alex Osterwalder, author of ‘Business Model Generation’, Fiddle is an excellent free solution.
- Trello. Trello is an online to do list, but it’s an online to do list that’s customisable, flexible, highly visual and shareable. Whether you’re a contractor working alone or a small team on-the-go, this is a great free task-tracking tool which also comes with a free app for iPhone or Android. Keep it simple by adding cards (like a to-do list) or add in details such as due date and alarms, upload files, set priority, set up calendars or enable voting. There’s more than first meets the eye with Trello.
- Shake. Imagine having a lawyer in your pocket, Shake isn’t quite there, but it’s close. Shake allows you to create, sign and send legally binding documents from your phone. So if you should ever require a Non-Disclosure Agreement, Freelance/Work-for-Hire Agreement, Buy/Sell Agreement, Rent/Lend agreement or Loan Agreement, Shake can help you. The starter plan is completely free and comes loaded with basic legal forms, if find you’re using Shake frequently and you’d like to customise forms you can subscribe to a monthly plan too. As it’s a completely free app, why now download it and keep it with you wherever your contractor or freelance job will take you. Click here to take a look at their website.
Keep an eye out for our Top 5 paid-for apps / websites blog coming soon! And if you’d like to regularly receive handy updates like this one, why not sign up to our newsletter below?