Staying on top of expense tracking vs. getting buried under: tools that freelancers can use!

By: Flexing It, 3/12/2013

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One of the key elements to becoming a successful freelancer and small business is to optimally manage work and deliver quality services to clients in a professional manner. One critical aspect of this is to manage expenses incurred on various client projects especially if they are being delivered simultaneously. Adopting a structured and disciplined towards tracking expenses can equip independent professionals and freelancers with a better control over their client accounts and provide the ease and convenience of reviewing these expenses as and when desired.

To aid freelancers, we have looked at a few tools that help keep an efficient track of expenses incurred. Most of these tools are free and permit the following:

  • Graphic summarisation of expense reports & bill generation for multiple clients
  • Ability to scan bills/receipts using an inbuilt scanner
  • Different tagging options for different heads of expenses
  • Tips on money management from online counsellors.
  • Linking & reconciliation of bank account transactions between due and received amounts
  • Ability to share budgets & projects with clients in advance to seek approval as well as set off /adjust payments with respect to the amount due
  • Customisation while generating bills to accommodate local taxes as well as maintenance of separate accounts for personal & business purposes
  • Reminders via email, SMS for collection of pending amounts & daily expense reports

Examples of a few such tools that are commonly used are:

  • Expenditure App: This is one of the best suited apps for freelancers with international clients. The key feature in this app is that one can enter the transactions on the screen of the app which shall automatically be converted into pre-set foreign currencies.
  • Expense Manager Free: This tool is of immense value for beginners as it offers easy management of small expenses. Offers budget tracking for both bank book as well as credit card for any repeated transactions.
  • Expensify: This app facilitates sync between the transactions done via credit cards/bank accounts and helps in maintaining a real record of expenses as and when occurred.
  • Fresh-Books Cloud Accounting: This offers cloud server backups along with other routine back up options.


Other such relevant mobile apps worth exploring are (i) Spending Tracker (ii) Pocket Expense (iii) Money lover-Expense Manager (iv) Group Expense Manager (v) Wally Expense. These mobile apps provide convenience and an ‘on-the-go ability’ to update. Web Apps on the other hand help in deeper detailing & are feature rich. Apps like (i) Billster (ii) Buxfer (iii) iOweYou are quite popular among the users of such applications.

We hope you found these tips helpful and look forward to your feedback on tools you have used and how they have worked for you.

 

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