Being a graphic designer often means wearing many hats. Nearly 90% of graphic design is conducted by freelancers, and as freelancers, you’ve got the role of business owner, project manager, and designer, all in one. Between marketing your services, communicating with clients, managing the day-to-day tasks of your job, and the creative thinking and mental energy that goes into designing, it can be easy to get overwhelmed.
In a fast-paced, competitive industry, it’s more important than ever to stay organized and ensure every project meets its deadline, and no communications get dropped.
Project management tools are a great way to keep organized, but there a few that stand out from the pack as being well-suited to designers. These tools can help designers prioritize projects and streamline workflows, leaving more time and energy to be dedicated to creating the unique and alluring content that clients yearn for.
The Best Project Management Tools for Designers
Dropbox Paper is a useful filesharing tool that enables easy collaboration across a team or even with clients. This workspace allows users to write, edit, brainstorm, review designs, and seamlessly run meetings. Team members or clients can use this tool to easily review and approve designs and it’s simple to use on a mobile device as well as a desktop. Dropbox Paper also allows users to view Invision and Sketch files correctly every time and acts as a central hub for all kinds of content: videos, sound, photos, and more.
Perfect for helping designers keep track of how much time is spent on individual tasks or projects, TimeTac is undoubtedly a valuable project management tool. This online program uses browser-based software as well as a smartphone app to easily track how time is spent. TimeTac is compatible with PCs and Macs, eliminating the need to manually track time or simply guess how much time is spent on each project. This data allows designers to gain a better sense of how to allocate resources and aids in billing clients more accurately.
This project management tool for designers works with the Gmail suite to transform an inbox into a tool that helps users to plan and prioritize with ease. Features such as email tracking, reminders, and follow-ups ensure that an important client email or request is never missed. Sortd also allows users to create convenient lists, sorting emails in a way that works best for the individual user. These lists can be customized with names and the easy-to-use drag and drop feature allows users to add and reorder items with just a few clicks.
Gryffin is an all-in-one project management tool is perfect for designers who yearn to keep everything in one place—tasks, calendars, files, style guides, client information, even expenses—all in one place.
Gryffin allows you to create custom project templates to track any time of work. Each project allows you to add details, attach files, emails, assign tasks, leave notes, see deadlines visualized in calendar view, and add expenses or invoices. Projects are grouped together in a workspace, where you can get a quick easy overview of all your current projects—like a spreadsheet, but better! You can assign yourself tasks, and even automate your workflows.
These project management tools for designers do everything that users crave: increase productivity, simplify task tracking and communication, organize files seamlessly, and help to manage relationships with clients. Start using any or all of these today to help grow and nurture your design business and to give you more time to focus on your finished products, which is what matters most.