The Cloud Based Company - Part 1

Over the last while I have been looking for solutions that will allow me to be more efficient, keep data off my computers, and create more complete business infrastructure. I am a small business owner and I have to look after everything myself so I always need to find ways to save myself time and effort.

Well, I don't look after everything myself. I think I have the best accountant on the planet and he is worth every penny. He and his staff look after my books, make sense of my receipts and tells me where to sign. Other than this, I have to worry about managing my clients, find new clients, track my time, create invoices, collect payments, etc.

Until a few weeks ago I had been using a collection of spreadsheets to track my time, create invoices, and track payments. I had been listening to one of my favourite photography podcasts ( thisweekinphoto.com) when an ad for one of their sponsors caught my attention. They described Freshbooks.com as a simple and fast way to handle creating invoices. I went to the Freshbooks.com web site, signed up for a free account and was hooked immediately. I then spent the next day switching all of my time tracking and invoice management over to Freshbooks.com.

Why? Simple. I now have my own web portal with my company logo that allows me to track my time, create invoices, send invoice notifications to my clients and track payments. I can even provide my clients access to this web portal so that they can see how I spend my time, see the invoices that I have sent them and see when I have received their payment. As an added bonus I also have an iPhone application that I can use to perform many of the same time tracking and invoice management activities. I can do this at any time from anywhere.

More importantly, to me anyway, the Freshbooks.com service is now a big piece of my overall Cloud Based Company strategy.

Posted on February 15, 2011 and filed under Recipes.