Freelance work is a stressful line of employment and it can often be hard to keep your jobs organized. When things get out of hand you might forget about payments, or underbill! PayCal from Jim Tsao aims to solve this with a tool for tracking billable hours and payments. Will PayCal be your job tracking savior, or will it leave you wanting more?
At first glance you might mistake PayCal for your run of the mill calendar app. In fact, PayCal is a calendar that tracks work. Whether it is shift work or a part-time job, PayCal allows you to input your hours (including any breaks) and will calculate the amount owed based on your rate. You can sent a per hour or per shift rate but unfortunately there is no way to have a job without the time attached. Some shift work is spread out over the entire day so it can be difficult to pin it to specific hour(s).
Just as frequently used jobs can be set up as templates, frequently works shifts can also be made into templates. Swiping down from the top of the top menu will revel the template bar. Just tap on a shift and then tap each day that shift is performed. Adding shifts will also update your payments which you can calculate on a weekly, bi-weekly, and monthly basis.
PayCal presents itself as a tool for freelancers, or part time workers that may work a variety of jobs. I can definitely see a use for this tool is helping keep track of work, but it seems that PayCal is divided between its focus on freelance work, and regular shifts of employees. Being able to set jobs is great for those that may want to split ascents of their job by how much they charge for it, but requiring a time for a shift and not allowing shifts to overlap leans more to the traditional employee. There is also no way to export the data you collect in PayCal which means you will have to repeat it again for invoicing purposes. While adding an invoice feature would complicate things, I do think giving the user a means to export the data would enhance the usability of the app greatly.
Being able to track your work form your iOS device is a great way to improve your productivity. PayCal has a nice interface for doing just that, and offers some nice features to speed up the process. Unfortunately I think Jim hasn’t done far enough to make PayCal the app every freelancer can’t live without. If you look as the feature set and feel that you don’t need those extras, then PayCal may be just what the doctor ordered. You can find it on the app store for $1.99.
We rate this app 2.5 out of 5 stars.