As a freelancer, you have to keep track of everything. From monitoring budgets to planning new creative ventures, there’s way too much information to keep track of. Some people work on paper or cobble together tables in word processors, but both of these options are difficult to manage.
If you own Excel, however, you have access to a much easier way of graphing information. Even if you’re not adept at creating spreadsheets and templates of your own, there are plenty of free ones scattered across the interwebs. We’ve gathered them here: 10 free Excel templates, suitable for freelancers and designers.
Nothing is more valuable than your time. Whether you want an easier way to track it for billing reasons, or just want to keep tabs on your workflow, the versatile Time Tracking Template can get it done. A must-have if you get paid hourly.
Straight from Microsoft, this budgeting template is extremely useful when you want to see your income, expenses and savings. There are two graphs to help you visualize the difference between your income and expenses. This one is simple, but invaluable.
If you’re looking to budget a project rather than your personal finances, this template will do the trick. All but the largest projects can be tracked in a spreadsheet like this one. There are a few extra templates here, suitable for real-world projects, monthly tracking or for a multitude of other tasks.
If you’re a freelancer who works online, you’re probably going to need an invoice template. These function as a record of your services and the money collected. It’s crucial that invoices look professional, as your clients will be seeing them. So, this minimal-but-beautiful Excel template is perfect.
A Gantt chart is a horizontal bar chart that spans the start and end times for individual pieces of a project. Gantt charts can be easily created in Excel, and this template can help you learn how to take advantage of this useful graph. Just set the tasks and add their start and end times, and you’ll have a visual plan for your next project.
As a designer, creative briefs are great for communicating with your clients and ensuring that they understand how your project is going to turn out. There’s a simple and detailed version of the brief template, so choose the one that applies most to your job.
This simplistic project schedule can be used for small projects and presentations. It divides your projects into three phases spread across multiple weeks. But you can also customize them and add milestones to suit your needs. Great if you just need something with very little fuss.
Using social media is a great marketing tactic, but freelancers especially benefit from employing it – because it’s free! This Excel social media calendar can help you plan your online campaigns and remind yourself to post about important events.
Blogging is another great way to put yourself out there as a freelancer, but it’s not just about the writing. The organization and planning can be daunting. This calendar can help you keep everything together, plan future posts and brainstorm keywords or special offers.
Instead of one big Excel template, this package includes 27 mini documents. Checklists, receipts and sign-in sheets are available for printing and use online. Not all are useful for freelancers, but a fair few could prove invaluable.
Data Tracking for Freelancers
It’s not easy, being a freelancer. But thanks to the internet, running a small business is much easier than it was in the past. While templates like these aren’t the only tools you’re going to need, these professional and versatile assets can definitely help you keep things in order.