If there’s anything I learned while freelancing, it’s that you have to treat it like a small business.
There’s no way you’re going to be able to handle the high workloads and
stresses of keeping up with multiple clients unless you adopt creative
ways to stay organized just like a retailer would. The entrepreneurial
mindset is a must-have, and you’re not going to go anywhere if you don’t
have the tools necessary to collaborate. That said, we will discuss all
the free collaboration tools that you need to get your groove on!
you hear the words “customer relationship management” (CRM), you
believe that we’re talking about retailers. This couldn’t be farther
from the truth. While many CRM suites are made for big businesses, there
are actually some that also work for sole proprietors and freelancers.
Take Bitrix24, for example. Your clients are essentially your customers,
and everything you do for them is a project. In order to better
organize your workflow, Bitrix24 presents a powerful collaborative suite
that lets you talk to your clients, manage your documents, stay on top
of large projects, and create invoices. Everything workflow-related is
packaged into one neat interface so that you can worry more about
getting work done on time and less about keeping track of everything
a time when everyone’s talking through SMS, you might not have that
luxury with your clients. That’s why they give you instant messaging!
Just like on Facebook, you can message each client individually, giving
them a heads-up on projects. Alternatively, you can post status updates.
By having your own little social network, you develop stronger
relationships with people you work with and create a more professional
If you’re always on the go, Bitrix24 also has free apps for Android
2: Google Drive
since Google replaced its old Docs interface with Google Drive, it
became one of the most powerful collaborative suites on the planet. Many
startups that offer their own collaborative products have integrated
Google Drive in order to streamline the whole document sharing process.
from documents, Google Drive lets you upload practically any type of
file, making it easily the most versatile cloud storage tool on Earth.
While you’re editing a file, other people can pitch in and edit, while
you see the changes live
. Let’s not forget their mobile apps for iOS
, and Windows Phone
you’re trying to keep up to task, Asana comes to the rescue and
provides an interface in which you can assign tasks to projects and
attach deadlines to them.
allow you to attach files (perhaps a finished product) to each task
from your computer or Google Drive. Want it on mobile? They got apps for
. For any other OS, they let you email tasks from your mobile device.
brain functions in funky ways. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could jot
down your thoughts in a graphical way that represents your chain of
thought? With MindMeister, you can do that now!
the product video shown above markets to large-scale startups with big
ideas, you can also use it to jot down those inspirations you get while
showering. When you sign up, the website will try to direct you to paid
plans, but below them, there’s a “Basic” subscription that’s free, and
it includes up to 3 “mind maps.”
5: Clocking IT
you need to keep track of the time you spent working, you don’t have to
use a stopwatch. Clocking IT can help you keep track of your time in
the most fashionable manner on a free hosted interface.
Clocking IT, you get to see different charts that show your projects,
deadlines, and active tasks. Tracking time might be a little difficult
at first, but it’s a very powerful and feature-rich tool that puts you
at the helm of an enterprise-level environment.
Alternative to Clocking IT is Toggl
you need to chat with clients, sometimes you want to meet face-to-face.
That’s no problem if you have the right video conferencing solution.
For the most collaborative experience, I’d say that Zoom fits the bill.
With Zoom, you get an easy-to-use interface that takes a lot of the
hassle out of setting up a video meeting. Its screen-sharing feature
allows you to start meetings without requiring all participants to have
Meetings will appear in HD, depending on your camera’s ability to stream
such resolutions. If you have a good webcam, it will do its magic here.
For half-hour conversations, this software gives you a significant
amount of professional appeal. The best part is that it also lets you
host meetings from your mobile phone with its Android and iOS apps
Productivity Needs The Right Tools
you use these tools correctly, you’ll not only give a professional
impression, but you’ll also boost your productivity significantly. Let
us know in the comments below what you think of these great solutions!
Source - Best Free Collaboration Tools for Freelancers