Going freelance has introduced me to a whole bunch of new chores and challenges, two of which are
- figuring out how to deal with the legal and financial side of being a company, and
- keeping track of how I spend my time.
Thankfully, there’s a tool which seems to hit the spot in terms of power and simplicity - FreeAgent. It seems to strike a great balance between gather all the information about expenses, payroll, taxes, invoices, timesheets and bills, whilst not requiring me to study accountancy to make progress.
Anyway, on my latest project (working with New Leaders via Free Range), I’m tracking my time in a relatively detailed way, and I thought it would be good to make use of the timesheet functionality that I’m already paying for. But, it’s a pain to go to the website every time I need to track a task. So:
Download FreeAgent Widget 1.3 here. This is a Mac Dashboard widget, and so only works on Mac OS X. If you’re looking for a Windows tool, Aspect Webdesign have build one that might work for you
It’s fairly simple, functionally, but covers everything I need. Once you fill in your FreeAgent details, it will load your projects, and choosing a project will load the available tasks for that project. Hit the big middle button to start/pause timing, and then clicking “Post” will post that time to your account. I’ve added a few neat little tricks - try double-clicking the time and typing “1h30”, for example.
It’s not hugely sophisticated - you can’t manage your existing timesheets, or add a timesheet for another day - but clicking the ‘timeslips’ text will take you straight to your timesheets on the site should you need that.
I hope it’s useful for some people, and of course, since it’s on GitHub you’re free to fork and improve it. I’m also keen to try the new github issues feature if you’re having any problems.
- v1.3.5 - updated to use the new freeagent.com domain
- v1.3.4 - fixes the issue posting comments and tasks with the ‘&’ character
- v1.3.2 - fixes an issue caused by posting times in the wrong format
- v1.3 - now stores any unposted time between restarts
- v1.2 - now lets you add a comment to your timeslip, to help keep track of the specifics of what you’re working on
- v1.1.1 - now only shows ‘Active’ projects. Great suggestion, folks. Keep ‘em coming!
- Thanks for the mention on the FreeAgent blog :)