Prospective new user seeking advice please?

I’m currently using Things 3, but i’ve bounced between a bunch of productivity apps that haven’t worked for me. The reason i’m finding Things 3 isn’t working (and the reason I am hoping Omnifocus will work) is I need:

  • reporting of completed tasks. I am hoping to be able to easily get my completed tasks into my accounting software (Xero) or at the very least into a spreadsheet so I can calculate invoices for freelance clients from there. I invoice on a day rate, so time trackers aren’t much use to me, but something that can record that I spent a day / half a day on something would be great.
  • time estimations. I frequently overload my days, so i’m hoping to get functionality that would enable me to note that a task needs a full day or a half day or whatever. Currently I do this with tags in Things, but it’s not really possible to get that data out of Things in a useful format, nor can I see tags in iOS on THings, so it’s not ideal.

For even more context - i’m a creative freelancer, so much of the time i’m booked by a client for anywhere between a day to several months at a time and need to keep track of how much work i’m doing.

Hoping some kind soul might have some thoughts for me!

I’m not sure if OmniFocus is all of these things. OmniFocus is a great task manager and so is Things 3 but my sense is that what you need is some type of time and billing software.


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You could do both of these things to some degree in OF, possibly enough to meet your needs. In reverse order, OF has a field for capturing the estimated duration of a task. I don’t think it gets more granular 5 minute increments. I’m a lawyer and bill in six-minute increments, so I’d love to have some way to estimate based on that metric, but since it’s just for estimates it works fine. (I don’t track estimated duration in my system very often.)

As far as reporting, it seems like you have two options. The first is that you can look at your completed items perspective, select the items for a day or whatever the time range is, and copy and paste them as Task Paper into a text editor or something else. Or you could just “print” the list of completed tasks on the screen. Probably the latter choice is not what you want.

With Omni Scripting, I think that you could create something that reports out completed tasks that just includes the fields that you want. I’ve never tried it, but all the information that you want is in OF and is accessible through scripting. There might even be someone whose created a reporting script along these lines who might be willing to share the script.

What I’m recommending may be too fiddly for what you are hoping for. I just offer it for your consideration.


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