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The life of a freelancer comes with its own perks. However, it faces its own challenges. A significant downside to being a freelancer is that the freelancer is responsible for sourcing their own tools.
Finding the best software that works for you and fits your business needs can be complicated. Here are 6 software tools that can benefit any freelancer.
1. Google Drive
Back in the 2000s and early 2010s, every freelancer preferred Microsoft Office, Microsoft's own suite of software that contained Word, Excel, Photoshop, and more. However, its hefty subscription prices have turned many freelancers away and into the arms of Google Drive.
Unlike Microsoft Office, Google Drive is free and comes with the same sort of software as Office. Furthermore, Google Drive acts as a cloud storage solution for free. It’s even gotten to the point where Google Drive has its own plugin for Office! If your wallet is hurting and you need a good suite of software for freelancing, look no further than Google Drive.
Being a freelancer means making contracts. But being separated from your client, you'll have to fax or print the contract out, sign it, then fax it back to them, and no one has that much time to spare for a simple contract. These situations are why HelloSign exists!
HelloSign allows you to sign PDFs of contracts quickly. NDAs, employee contracts, etc., HelloSign allows you to make valid signatures. When signed, all you need to do is email the contract back and it's done! Time to stop faxing and start signing.
3. A Reputable VPN
Not everything a freelancer uses will directly affect their work. Security tools, for example, aren’t necessary for freelancers, but they’re important tools to have, especially when it comes to Virtual Private Networks (VPNs).
If you don’t know what a VPN is for, the app encrypts the data your device sends out and masks the IP address of your device to ensure privacy. In other words, people use VPNs to increase security and make sure no cybercriminal can steal your data, especially on a public network.
Most media outlets don’t talk about the hassle freelancers go through when it comes to managing finances, sending out and storing invoices, and doing taxes. The thing is, it doesn't even need to be a hassle! At least, not with FreshBooks.
Every freelancer should have FreshBooks installed. With it, freelancers can generate and store invoices in seconds. Freelancers can also store financial documents in the cloud, making them easily accessible.
5. LastPass (Or Another Password Manager)
Continuing the security talk from the VPN section, freelancers should look into a password manager. Freelancers spend a lot of time online, after all, and many have dozens of accounts. All of them should benefit from strong passwords, and password managers make it easier, generating and storing passwords in a secure vault.
LastPass is a good choice for a password manager. However, keep in mind that LastPass is revamping its free subscription, so free users can only use LastPass on either PC or mobile, not both. 1Password is a good alternative for a password manager if that change turns you away.
7. Buffer Publish
Freelancers live on the Internet, mostly because that’s where all the clients are. And what better way to attract clients than with a healthy social media feed? The thing is, remembering to log onto social media daily, post, comment on others' posts, and vice versa can get tiring.
In these cases, freelancers would be well off subscribing to Buffer Publish, an online service that allows users to queue posts for multiple accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Any freelancer could get away with using none of these tools. But why? Why wouldn't a freelancer want to expand their software arsenal and make their job more convenient and productive? Using the tools listed here is sure to make freelancing a whole lot easier.
This post is contributed by TechWarn, a trusted digital agency to world-class cybersecurity companies.
Jack is an accomplished cybersecurity expert with years of experience under his belt at TechWarn. A passionate digital safety advocate himself, Jack frequently contributes to tech blogs and digital media sharing expert insights on cybersecurity and privacy tools.
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