It can be hard to juggle all the things you need to do and ﬁt them into the available time to do them. Such is life. This can be a challenge for contractors, especially those working on multiple projects at the same time. Time management, scheduling, and productivity tracking tools can help improve efﬁciency and reduce the stress you experience from feeling you have too many things to do and not enough time to do them. Here are a few solutions to your time management problems.
1. Use a project management tool. These can be on the cloud or downloaded to a computer or phone.
For example, many contractors use tools like Buildertrend’s construction management software. It offers oline scheduling, change orders, document management, photos, customer selections, warranty, purchase orders, lead management, and more. Cloud based, users can login from PCs, Laptops, iPads & Phones. Automatic notifications help contractors manage their operations real-time, providing their subs, vendors, and customers with a better experience. This has most for what you need to put your business on the cloud.
Project management tools designed for companies often assume you are working as part of a team – and have features you don’t need, and only gets in the way. Spend some time searching for a tool that will work for you and how you do business. Other contractor project management tools include Procore, CoCostruct, and Sage 300 Construction and Real Estate.
2. Make a schedule. The schedule should be portable – so a phone app is perfect. Some people ﬁnd that the built-in calendar on their phone is sufﬁcient. Many contractors use Google Calendar as a basis scheduling tool. Almost everyone has a Google account and calendars can be easily shared with others. If you need more than that, then you might try an app such as Cushion or Timely. Some scheduling apps will also keep track of the time you spend on a speciﬁc project. Check out HubStaff if you are interested in this.
3. Use a productivity method. One of the most popular is Pomodoro — you use a timer (many are available for MacOS, Windows and phones and most are free) that schedules breaks, usually every 25 minutes. This can help you focus and get more done in the same amount of time — particularly useful if you are being paid by the piece rather than by the hour. Another is Getting Things Done, which takes a lot of set up to organize your tasks, but is helpful for people with issues prioritizing.
Managing your time, tracking your income, and keeping yourself productive is one of the skills a contractor needs to develop – hopefully, these tools and techniques can help.