By Tess Hansen May 25, 2022
Power up your side hustle with these 8 free project management tools that make it easy to stay on track, schedule meetings, collaborate with team members, and manage workflows.
Whether you’re a freelance writer, a part-time graphic designer, or a retailer selling handmade goods on Etsy, having a side hustle is a great way to make a little extra money when you’re not working 9-5. In fact, roughly 45% of working Americans have a second source of income and 76% of those love their side hustle, according to Side Hustle Nation. It can be a satisfying way to explore your more creative side and do the things you truly enjoy.
However, having and maintaining a side hustle can get tricky, especially when you already work full time. Sometimes it can get so overwhelming that you just want to throw your hands up in the air and hire a project manager.
Thankfully, there are tons of free tools, apps, and browser extensions that can do all that work for you. By harnessing the power of high-speed internet and technology, you’ll be able to stay organized, easily manage workflows, schedule meetings, and focus on the things you actually care about.
In this case, not the Instagram feature, but a plug-in you can add to your Gmail or Outlook account. Boomerang is the ultimate email support. It helps you write emails now to be sent later, reminds you when you need to follow up, and allows you to schedule important meetings without leaving your inbox.
If you sign up for their paid plan, it can even help you write better emails. Their “Respondable” assistant helps you craft more actionable emails using artificial intelligence. As you write your email, “Respondable” will be there coaching you in real-time about the length and tone of your email. They’ll even provide insight into the likelihood your email will receive a response.
Think of all the accounts and apps you currently use. There’s Gmail, Outlook, Slack, Facebook Messenger, Zoom, Shopify, Canva… the list goes on and on.
If you’re exhausted from constantly having to log in and out and go back and forth between all of these apps and accounts, Shift can help. This desktop app streamlines over 1,200 apps into one easy-to-use interface. Their Workspaces also allow you to create the perfect workflow for your team with all the web tabs, bookmarks, and apps you need in one place so you can stay focused and on track.
Whether you work alone or lead a large enterprise team, Trello makes it easy to manage projects big and small.
Start by creating a board, lists, and cards—these are the building blocks of Trello where you can easily organize and navigate between all the tasks your team needs to get done. Fill your cards with relevant information, like checklists, due dates, attachments, messages, and more. Once you’ve completed a task, move that card between your lists so your team knows when a project goes from “in progress” to “done.” Or, if you’re a one-person business, it can help you keep track of all those moving pieces. No more losing track of paper to-do lists!
Another well-known project management software, Monday has more than 150,000 customers around the world. And just like Trello, everything starts with a visual board, where you can add and track employees and manage tasks. Mark whether a project is being worked on, done, or stuck using their colorful, easy-to-use interface.
In addition to their powerful project management tools, Monday comes with an impressive set of functionalities including timeline and calendar views, time tracking, and integrations with other tools like Slack, Dropbox, Todoist, and more. Who knows? It might even make actual Mondays more enjoyable.
Designed by a couple of founders who were tired of other project management tools, ClickUp is the “one app to replace them all.” It offers the same integrations and capabilities as Trello and Monday, but what makes ClickUp unique is its vast customization tools. Go between 15 different views — list, board, calendar, activity, timeline, Gantt, and more — to easily see where your priorities lie and who needs to work on what.
Tired of forgetting to read that interesting article you recently came across? Can’t seem to find that mouthwatering recipe you found a few days ago? With Pocket, you can easily bookmark all the fascinating stories and articles you come across while browsing the web.
Available on most browsers and in the Pocket app, this read-it-later tool allows you to access all of your favorite pieces, highlight key passages, and even listen to articles using their audio playback option. Pocket even gets to know you and sends you tailored pieces they think you might enjoy.
If you and your team use Gmail for everything (and we mean everything), Sortd could be the answer you’re looking for. This extension is specifically designed to streamline your Gmail account and turn it into your all-in-one workspace. Use it to effortlessly manage emails, send follow-up emails, create transparent workflows, and manage your CRM without ever leaving your inbox. You can also ensure that everyone is on the same page by sharing email conversations across your team.
Forget about sticky notes (both the physical and virtual kinds). Todoist is the ultimate to-do list app for all your business and personal needs. Used by Amazon, Facebook, Disney, and more, Todoist makes it easy for organizations of any size to neatly organize tasks, files, and messages all in one place. Use Todoist Boards for an even more comprehensive experience and import pre-built templates so you don’t have to create them from scratch.
With these 8 project management tools, your side hustle will be set up for success. Now it’s time for the final step: getting super-fast, reliable fiber internet. Find out more about EarthLink Fiber Internet, and how we can make life easier for small businesses.
Tess Hansen is a freelance copywriter based in Brooklyn. She graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in English Language and Literature. She writes about all things digital for EarthLink, including how to make your life easier (and safer) through tech.
See all posts from Tess Hansen.