Being a freelancer is a term that has evolved in the eye of public opinion over the last decade.
First of all, there are more and more remote workers who either work full-time or part-time from home.
During the 2020 COVID-19 outbreak, even some people who never considered this form of work model were forced to try out the life of a freelancer. This further raised awareness and the significance of freelancing in the modern world.
Either way, more and more millennials are looking forward to the opportunity to make their livelihood (or supplement their budget) by working from home.
Here are seven tools that can help them out with this.
1. Payment gateways
The first thing you need to worry about is getting paid.
Here, there’s a plethora of options available, the simplest ones being Payoneer and PayPal. Keep in mind that the way in which you’re getting paid may affect your own convenience, especially if the dollar or euro are not your native currencies.
With some payment gateways, this means either starting a dollar account in your own bank or agreeing to an unfavorable conversion.
The best thing to do before making a decision here is to do your research on the subject matter by mingling amongst the user community. Forums and social media groups are an ideal place to start.
2. Communication tools
The most obvious downside of working from home is the lack of presence in the company’s headquarters. Fortunately, with adequate communication tools, you can turn this into much less of a problem.
First of all, it’s important to mention that you may not have too much freedom of choice here. The client or the company that you’re working part-time at may insist on a certain type of communication or a certain tool (like Zoom or Slack).
On the other hand, they may also use a collaboration tool, which facilitates both communication and project management.
3. Time-management tools
Staying productive while working from home is not an easy task, and self-disciplining yourself is even harder.
The biggest problem, however, lies in the fact that you may be completely unaware of the fact that you have a problem, to begin with. With a time-management tool, you can easily quantify just how big of a problem this actually is. You may even get the idea of how to successfully remedy it.
For instance, once you learn how much time you’re wasting on social media browsing and watching YouTube videos, you’ll be on the right track to fix this problem.
4. Decent internet connection
One of the best things about working from home lies in the fact that technically speaking, you’re your own boss.
The problem that comes from this lies in the fact that you have a much greater level of responsibility. The fact that your internet connection is below standard is a problem that your clients and employers won’t care much for. After all, they’re paying you for a job well done, and if the pay’s not enough for you to afford a decent connection, this can’t be their problem.
Ideally, you would look for providers like Orange Jordan, who offer fiber internet, a cutting edge technology when it comes to connection types.
5. Interval work timer
In order to optimize your work efforts, you may want to consider finding an interval work timer.
The way this works is fairly simple. Just because you’re staring at your monitor for two hours this doesn’t mean that you’ve spent two hours actively working. An interval timer like the Pomodoro Timer can help you make a clearer delineation between work and active work.
It allows you to work for 20 to 25 minutes and then rest for 5 to 10 minutes afterward. It helps keep your focus, efficiency, and productivity high for as long as possible.
6. Specialized work tools
Depending on your industry, you may have a need for some specific services.
For instance, as a freelance writer, you could capitalize on a tool like Grammarly. It’s not about how good your grammar or spelling is. Everyone can miss an occasional article or a punctuation mark.
If you’re writing for SEO purposes, an optimization tool can help you keep track of the average sentence length, the use of passive voice, and the size of your sections.
Remember, all of these things can be done manually, but this reduces the margin of error and saves you time and energy.
7. Cybersecurity is everything
Lastly, you need to understand that your work, your livelihood is on the internet.
As such, your online presence needs to be protected as well as possible. This means having decent hardware and software firewalls, a reliable password manager, and a premium antivirus software.
Keep in mind that you need to protect your work from systemic malfunctions, as well as foreign intrusions.
This is why you need a reliable data backup tool and a data recovery tool (just so that you are protected on all fronts).
In the end, it all comes down to creating your own system.
Some people manage to stay productive without time-management tools and interval work timers, while others pick a payment method without giving it a second thought.
Still, in order to achieve maximum efficiency, you really need to take the next step.