Paymo: Time Tracking Done Just Right

To freelancers, time tracking is probably the most important aspect of any project. It helps you keep track of exactly how much time you are spending on a particular project, how productive you are and, most importantly, how much you are owed when it comes to payday at the end of the month! There are many different time tracking solutions available for all platforms, however it seems that in this day and age of the Internet, an online-based solution is often more appropriate.

Why? For one, they are often cheaper than PC or Mac-based software and they have the advantage of being able to be accessed from anywhere, not just from your own computer. There is a wealth of online time tracking applications available. Today, let’s have a look at Paymo, which we just recently featured in a giveaway.

Paymo has a considerable advantage over other time tracking clients in that it is free (if you sign up to the basic account) and that there is a range of goodies that can be added onto it, assisting you even further. Let’s have a look at it in a bit more detail.

Introduction

You can sign up to Paymo for free by simply heading over to their website and signing up. With a free account, you can create up to 3 invoices a month and store up to 50 MB on Paymo’s servers (you do, however, get unlimited clients and projects). With the more expensive $9.99 per month account, you get up to 5 GB of storage and unlimited invoices.

Paymo Home

The home page of Paymo

When you sign up, you are given a Paymo domain (which usually looks something like http://yournamehere.paymo.biz) where you can log in directly to your site using your username and password (a bit like Ronin).

Once you have signed up and logged into your account, then you are redirected to your dashboard, which gives you an overview of how many hours you have worked that week and a quick overview of your tasks.

Paymo Dashboard

The dashboard in Paymo

Let’s take a closer look at Paymo’s features.

Milestones

Milestones are, as the name suggests, important deadlines that you have to meet. These can be added to Paymo quite easily and pop up in your calendar. You can assign milestones to individual projects, individual people (if you have signed up for one of the more expensive accounts which allows multiple users) and Paymo can even send you a reminder 48 hours before the milestone is due.

Paymo Milestone

Adding a milestone in Paymo

Timesheets

Timesheets in Paymo show you exactly how much work you’ve done in that particular week, month or day. You can add as many tasks as you want in a week (just make sure you don’t exceed that 50 MB of storage…) and Paymo will keep track of them all, working out exactly how much time you spent on each task and the total time worked for that particular period.

Paymo Timesheet

The Timesheet view lists all the tasks you have worked on and how much time you have spent on each one

In the Timesheet view, you can also add new tasks on particular dates. To do this, you simply click on Add Time on a particular day then enter the task you worked on, how long you worked on it and which project it was for. Paymo will then automatically calculate the time you took for it and add it to the My Time Entries view.

Timer

With the built-in timer, you can track exactly how much time you are spending on a particular task, instead of roughly guessing. Using the Timer widget, you click on which project and which task you are working on and hit the Start button. Paymo will automatically start timing until you hit the stop button, and the time will be entered into the task, avoiding the need to do it yourself.

Paymo Widget v3.0.9

Paymo's built-in timer widget

Invoicing

Invoicing is ultimately the most important part of time tracking software, as it allows you to get paid on time and that you get paid for every single task that you have completed, avoiding forgetting anything. The invoicing system in Paymo is relatively easy to use and allows you to issue invoices in a variety of languages and currencies.

Paymo Invoicing

Creating a new invoice in Paymo

With the Invoicing system, you can enter individual items or import them from existing tasks and projects. When you import tasks and projects you can enter your pay rate and adjust the invoices to fit your needs. Paymo can also track your expenses on any individual project (and invoice them if necessary) and keeps track of which invoices have been paid and which haven’t.

Reports

Paymo can generate reports, which show how long you have worked on individual tasks as well as financial statements, which list how much you have earned in a particular month along with any expenses occurred. You can choose the timeframe and which tasks and/or projects are to be included in the report.

Paymo Reports

Paymo has a feature that helps you create easy-to-understand reports

If the company you are working for requires you to submit regular reports so that they can keep track of your progress, you can either print them off directly from Paymo or save them as in PDF format, meaning that they can be e-mailed later on.

Add-Ons

Paymo is simply bursting with add-ons that really enhance the functionality of this useful, free time tracking utility. You can add a desktop widget which helps track your time on tasks without you having to log in to Paymo via your browser and you also have the choice between browser add-ons for Safari, Firefox and Chrome.

Paymo AddOns

Paymo is customisable through a range of free add-ons

Paymo have also released iOS and Android versions of their time tracking software, allowing you to track time when you’re on the go and there are add-ons for Google Apps, Basecamp, KashFlow and Xero.

Paymo Mobile and Web

Paymo has released iOS and Android versions of its time tracking software, along with add-ons for web-based managers such as Google Apps

Final Thoughts

Although it won’t win any awards for looks, Paymo is an example of a great functional application with lots of extra little features built-in that make time tracking a breeze. It is suitable for individuals and for small businesses or internet startups who want to keep check of their employees and the attractive pricing strategy make it an affordable solution for all.


Summary

An web-based time tracking software for freelancers, individuals and small businesses.

  • Paymo  | 
  • Free (basic account); otherwise $9.99 a month  | 
  • Paymo LLC
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