Technology tips for freelancing
With your own freelancing business, the aid of tech and digital programs can help you seamlessly complete projects. Here are some to consider.
Industry estimates suggest there are as many as 55 million freelancers working in the U.S.1As these independently-employed individuals contributed an estimated $1 trillion to our economy in 2016, you have to wonder how they balance daily workloads and the management of their business, all while generating a steady stream of revenue.
Pursuing freelance work is no different from running any other business. One key to maintaining efficiency and improving business growth is adopting the right technology.
Here's a rundown of four tech and digital practices that many freelancers can lean on.
#1. Enlist a freelance work platform
According to a Freelancers Union survey, "finding work and, correspondingly, income stability are the top barriers to doing more freelancing work." That's why some freelancers can supplement their steady base of work with one-off projects from freelancing platforms like Upwork, Freelancer, and more. These platforms help freelancers find work in one place.
#2. Seek leads on social media
Social media has become a bona fide avenue for finding leads and landing new freelance work (and we're not just talking about LinkedIn). 60% of employers now use social media to screen and recruit candidates.2
#3. Use project management software
If there's one tip small business owners might share with freelancers that work from home, it's this: use project management software to track the various stages of project completion, from ideation to payment. There are a variety of cloud-based software available with different price points, so freelancers can scale them as needed.
#4. Outsource admin tasks to software
Until a business becomes large enough for to hire contractors or employees, a freelancers can use as much technology as possible to automate tasks outside of their wheelhouse. This includes accounting software like QuickBooks or Zoho and marketing automation like MailChimp and HubSpot to send out regular emails and handle marketing, as needed.
With the proliferation of smartphones and cloud-based technology fueling our workplaces, freelance work may become a more viable option for those who want (or need) to work from home. If you're planning on going this route, be sure to make use of all the technology trends available to you.
Learn more about the key components of running a freelance operation such as marketing your services and filing taxes.
1"New study finds freelance economy grew to 55 million Americans this year, 35% of total U.S. workforce." Upwork. https://www.upwork.com/press/2016/10/06/freelancing-in-america-2016/
2"Number of Employers Using Social Media to Screen Candidates Has Increased 500 Percent over the Last Decade." CareerBuilder. http://www.careerbuilder.com/share/aboutus/pressreleasesdetail.aspx?ed=12%2F31%2F2016&id=pr945&sd=4%2F28%2F2016