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Logging the work you do
Thread poster: Gareth Wilson
Gareth Wilson

Spanish to English
Mar 12, 2015

Hello everyone,

I'm just wondering how everyone keeps track of the jobs they're working on. Do you use spreadsheets, lists, just your memory...? I ask because I've designed an Excel spreadsheet that hopes to make this a simple process, allowing you to keep track of your work and to view your earnings either by client or by job type. I've copied the link below:

http://en.garethcwilson.com/translators/resources.php

Is this something you'd find useful?

Gareth


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Grace Shalhoub  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:19
Member (2014)
French to English
+ ...
Excel spreaksheet Mar 12, 2015

Gareth Wilson wrote:

Hello everyone,

I'm just wondering how everyone keeps track of the jobs they're working on. Do you use spreadsheets, lists, just your memory...? I ask because I've designed an Excel spreadsheet that hopes to make this a simple process, allowing you to keep track of your work and to view your earnings either by client or by job type. I've copied the link below:

http://en.garethcwilson.com/translators/resources.php

Is this something you'd find useful?

Gareth


I also use a similar spreaksheet to keep track of client data and payment status.
Thank you for sharing this.

Grace


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Evita Savicka  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 13:19
Member (2007)
English to Russian
+ ...
Wow! Mar 12, 2015

This very morning I thought I needed to create a single file to keep the data about all my clients and projects. And here comes your post!

Thank you for sharing!


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Susan Welsh  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:19
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
I log more information Mar 12, 2015

I use a paper (!!) form with much more information:

Customer
date
Job slug (topic)
Project manager
PO number
my invoice number
nature of job (translation, language pairs; editing; revision)
particular difficulties
rate _____ per _________ (sw, tw, hours)
total to bill
time
deadline
date delivered
# source words
# target words
# lines (if relevant)
words per hour
invoice sent (date)
payment received (date)
net dollars received
$ rate per word for funds received
$ rate per hour for funds received
fee subtracted for money transfer/conversion
Notes
glossary/ TM filed
Quick Books entry made (invoice)
Time entered to QB
Payment logged to QB

It's works for me.


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Michael Joseph Wdowiak Beijer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:19
Member (2009)
Dutch to English
+ ...
interesting Mar 12, 2015

However, I use TO3000 (http://www.to3000.com/ ) myself, and am quite happy with it. It does quite a bit more than your average Excel file (e.g., generate quotes, invoices, reports, etc.).

Thanks for sharing!

Michael



[Edited at 2015-03-12 11:33 GMT]


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Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 12:19
Member
English to French
I rely on Translation Office 3000 Mar 12, 2015

for business management and on my accountant for accounting.

I stopped using formula-/condition-ridden Excel sheets in 2005, because I started to log more than 400 jobs/year and they became too clumsy.

Thanks for sharing!

Philippe

[Edited at 2015-03-12 11:37 GMT]


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GerSi  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 12:19
Member (2010)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
More detailed as well Mar 12, 2015

Hi Gareth,

your spreadsheet is very clear and a great starting point, if one does not want to become overwhelmed.

However, with the help of the system introduced by Susan I believe everyone can easily add more columns that do not need to be interconnected throughout several spreadsheets anyway.

Or maybe you can add more simple customizable columns yourself just to upgrade the template and to show that it is expandable.

I have all my jobs listed on one spreadsheet that is assigned to one particular year and colour separate the months.

Great work guys!


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Gareth Wilson

Spanish to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for the feedback Mar 12, 2015

I can definitely see the limitations of using a spreadsheet when comparing it to the likes of TO 3000. I've seen lots of programmes like this and they look really good. I haven't actually got round to trying any yet though.

I mainly work with agencies so the invoices I send are normally the ones that the agency tells me to use. So, for now, this spreadsheet meets my needs. I hope that it can be of some use to others too.

GerSi, I like your idea about adding customisable columns and placing the spreadsheet all on one page. That is something I will definitely look in to! Thanks for your feedback!

Thank you all for your comments.

Gareth


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sacale  Identity Verified
Iceland
Local time: 11:19
English to German
+ ...
Database knowledge comes in handy... Mar 12, 2015

Depending on the amount of information, a "home-made" relational database can be a nice middle way between spreadsheets and software. It does of course take a little time to set up, but I like having my own custom overviews and statistics (through queries). It's all based on spreadsheets in the end, but the relational database approach is ideal to link personal contact information, company information and task information and to display it all in a structured way.

I thought I'd mention this as a third option, just in case anyone likes playing with the database functionalities of their respective office suite


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:19
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Similar to Susan's spreadsheet Mar 12, 2015

Mine finishes prior to invoicing as that's dealt with on a separate spreadsheet, though it does include the actual invoice number. So I have a client list; a job detail list; and an invoice list. I also keep a paper copy of invoices (printed on the back of used paper) so I can physically move each one from raised, to overdue (if necessary), to paid, and then into my archives. That way I have a paper audit trail of the really important part of my business activity as well as an electronic one.

I don't think I'd like to lose any of the information that provides statistics - such as numbers of words and/or hours spent on each type of service and each subject area.


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Triston Goodwin  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:19
Spanish to English
+ ...
Whiteboard + Freshbooks Mar 12, 2015

I use two things to keep track of projects/invoices.

For a quick overview, I have a large whiteboard just above my computer. I have information on current projects, invoices I need to issue, invoices that have been issued, my monthly goals and notes for my various marketing tasks.

For more in-depth information, I use Freshbooks. It does everything that my whiteboard does, but is accessable from my phone, handles my time tracking, all my client information, and helped me finish all my taxes in about 10 minutes. I use it to send invoices and it is also my payment processor, so my clients can log in to their individual accounts and they can see their pending invoices, what they've paid me, and pay me! I even receive an alert whenever a client views their invoice, so there's no "we didn't receive your invoice."

It's $20 a month, but I love it


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Benno Groeneveld  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:19
English to Dutch
+ ...
Post-it notes Mar 12, 2015

and invoices in Quicken Home and Business works for me. But then, I'm a one-person business and a simple guy.

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Epameinondas Soufleros  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 13:19
Member (2008)
English to Greek
+ ...
Database Mar 13, 2015

I have been planning to make a database for this purpose, but I have not yet found the time to do it. So, what I use now is Business Contact Manager for Outlook, which is a free add-on for Microsoft Outlook, made my Microsoft.

It is not only for contact management. You can also use it to track projects, tasks within each project, leads and opportunities, as well as organize marketing campaigns.

[Edited at 2015-03-13 09:20 GMT]


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Richard Foulkes  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:19
German to English
+ ...
I like your style :) Mar 13, 2015

Benno Groeneveld wrote:
and invoices in Quicken Home and Business works for me. But then, I'm a one-person business and a simple guy.


I thought I was meticulous but some people here have blown me out the water!

Simple Excel spreadsheet and invoices in Word converted to PDF for me.


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564354352  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 12:19
Danish to English
+ ...
KISS is my strategy... Mar 13, 2015

Like Richard says...

Richard Foulkes wrote:

Simple Excel spreadsheet and invoices in Word converted to PDF for me.


I aim to keep admin at a minimum, but easily accessible, no fancy systems for me.
All details in two spreadsheets, one for orders, one for accounts. No fuss...

But to the OP:
Thanks for your generosity in wanting to share something you have obviously taken time to create. Very kind of you...


[Edited at 2015-03-13 13:18 GMT]


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