Why Developers Choose AND CO
When a developer decides to take the leap into freelance work, she will quickly find herself needing to learn things she never expected. There’s quarterly taxes. There’s finding new clients on your own. There’s negotiating for payments. There’s contracts. By becoming a freelancer, you are no longer just a specialist. You are also a business owner—and the business is you.
You have to become an administrator, a marketer, a writer, a communicator, and you have to still meet all those deadlines that pile up as you add clients.
This can be a big burden, and, at first it can be overwhelming, but there are great tools like AND CO that can help ease the burden and allow you to focus on what you’re best at.
Jon Andersen, a developer with AND CO, summed it up well: “If I optimize my code, why wouldn’t I optimize the way I run my business?”
Good question, Jon. Let’s take a look.
What is AND CO?
AND CO is, essentially, your on-the-go administrative assistant (the CO stands for “Chief Operator”). It’s an app, but through that app, you can communicate with your CO, a real, live human being who is there to assist you with all your freelance questions. It’s easy to use and the COs are quick to respond, knowledgeable, and have access to a fount of information, including tax deductible related inquiries.
So, what else can a developer do with AND CO?
Invoice Clients Quickly and Easily
Imagine you’re having a busy day. You’ve got a few deadlines, you have to run to the grocery store, pick up the dry cleaning, and pay that parking ticket you’ve had sitting on your nightstand for a month. For many freelancers, every day looks pretty much like this. Invoicing isn’t exactly the most exciting, or beneficial, use of your time when, with AND CO, you can pull out your phone and shoot off a text to your CO to ask for an invoice to be sent in just a few seconds.
Perhaps the best part is that the CO keeps track of the invoices that you sent out to clients, automatically following up, and, if the client doesn’t meet the payment terms, the CO will send another invoice that includes any additional fees incurred because of delayed payment.
“AND CO is the service I never knew I was missing. It lets me spend more time on what matters most—my clients—while leaving equally important things—like getting paid—in the capable hands of my very own CO,” said developer Noah Henscheid. “Getting started was incredibly easy, too. From the start, I was amazed at how ‘hands-off’ I could be with the process.”
All of this without you needing to do much more than type a few lines on your phone and wait for the money to hit your bank account, which brings us to…
Bank Account Integration and Tax Information
This allows you to automatically receive business related transactions, file expenses, and keep track of your business records in one simple tool. AND CO also can help you categorize business related expenses (as well as determine what is a legitimately deductible expense for tax purposes). They will provide you with monthly expense and income statements, remind you when quarterly taxes are due, and help you to calculate how much is due each quarter. End of year income statements can also be generated.
Tax information can be overwhelming for a freelancer, especially if you come from more traditional employment where all you need is your w2 and a few hours to file once per year. Then, when you begin freelancing, you find yourself in a situation where you need to start filling out 1099s, track expenses and income, and file taxes quarterly. It’s certainly not the most fun part of being a freelancer, but with some help from AND CO, you can keep your records straight and make the process go as easily as possible.
Have AND CO Review Your Contracts
It can be a great feeling to land a new client, as long as the contract for your work checks out. AND CO can help with this as well, by reviewing your contracts and pointing out what might be missing or unfair. It’s easier to make sure everything in your contract is square before you get started on a project (or a series of projects) than it is to sort it out once a disagreement arises late in the process. As Benjamin Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
And that guy was pretty much the original multi-talented freelancer, wasn’t he? How much more could he have accomplished with a CO in his pocket!
As AND CO Grows, So Does Its Features
It seems like AND CO is always coming up with some new way to expand its offerings for freelancers. One of the most useful new features, which will only improve with time, is the ability to check out whether people recommend certain clients. Or, maybe more importantly, whether they warn you against certain clients. By leaving reviews for your freelance gigs, you help other freelancers make better decisions, and when they leave reviews, it helps you. Even though freelancers work apart, and often work solo, we can still benefit from working together. AND CO helps to bridge that gap between you and the world outside your home office.
Save Yourself Time
All that AND CO does for a freelancer comes down to this crucial factor: It saves you time. Time that you can spend reaching out to potential clients, or exercising, or binge watching Stranger Things. The point is, your time is the most valuable thing you have. If you can make just as much money from your business while saving yourself a ton of time, why wouldn’t you?
The decrease in stress alone can make you more focused on your projects, instead of on the administrative tasks surrounding them. Sometimes trying to do too much can be detrimental—and knowing when to outsource can be crucial to anyone running a business, from Fortune 500 CEOs to sole proprietor developers.
John Arthur is a writer and musician. His band is called The Deafening Colors
John White, Creative Director & Christian D’ Alessio, COO