Manage Editorial Schedule and Assignments?

I’ve reached the point where I could use some help managing editorial assignments for a small staff of freelancers. Whatever software I choose should also include some project-planning functionality to help me map where I’m going with future content.

Ideally, I need it to be accessible to someone who doesn’t have access to a Mac or iOS, because I don’t know what future freelancers may be using. So a Web interface, at least, would be good.

I use Omnifocus for managing my own tasks, and that’s not going to change. But I don’t pay for the web interface (yet). Does OmniPlan allow team management through a similar online interface? I’d rather pay for OmniPlan up front than to commit to another monthly fee for something like Asana.

I also use Daylite, but that’s more of a CRM than a tool that would allow management of assignments (I think). Any thoughts on this?

And finally, speaking of Asana – I’ve seen a lot of good comments here about it, but I signed up and it confuses me. Should I just bite the bullet and commit to that?

I also pay for Zapier already, so maybe there’s some useful functionality there.

Any and all comments are welcome. The key feature is an assignment tracker. (I will also say that I love the idea of Airtable, but I have never been able to fully commit to figuring it out because I’m not quite that geeky, and I know my freelancers will not be, either.

If you’d look at a kanban type approach Trello might be a good fit.


I’ve used Trello for my own purposes to track a sales process, but I’m not sure I see a fit for a series of one-off assignments. Looking back through past posts, I see Trello mentioned a lot, though, so I’m afraid I’m missing something.

I guess technically there are multiple steps like “Go to this event,” “Edit photos from this event,” “Publish photos from this event,” “Write article about this event.” But all those steps, in this case, are sort of assumed to be built into each one. It feels like I’d be creating more work - but maybe that’s because I don’t understand how I would implement it or what the power behind it would be.

Todoist is great for team task assignment. It also works on Windows. It has boards but that is not really for serious project-planning.

You are not specific about “project planning” methodology you are expecting.

Having “been there done that” with a number of tools, if I were you based on what you say I would start simple with a Google Sheet with the columns you need to track. Name, title, applicable dates, role assignments. Get everyone looking at it and using it. Do not delagate the “managing” to the tool.

I appreciate what you’re saying here. Keeping it simple is good advice, although Google Sheets is probably not where I’ll land, even if it is the simplest solution.

I’d say long-term project planning will remain primarily something that I do myself, but I was hoping to have a system that would allow me to bring in others as that process progresses. It may be overkill at this point, though.

I’ve not really looked at Todoist for this because I’m so invested in OmniFocus, but glancing at the website, it does seem like a strong possibility for the assignment tracking.

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Agree no need to move through kanban steps, but the lists and cards view could still work. Based on what you’ve said, I’d have one board, a column per assignee, or per week, and give each one a date so you can see the cards populate on calendar view. Add each freelancer to their own cards. It sounds like you might not need it but you could communicate about each assignment on the assignment’s card with them.

I’d recommend at least quickly entering some assignments on your own to see if the organization looks promising.

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Trello has checklists that would probably work for this.

Some YouTube videos or tutorials would probably go far to figuring out a framework for your situation.

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Well, access to and ability to setup/configure in Google Sheets (especially the sharing bit) is simple and easy. But remember you can introduce more sophisticated things like filtering, check lists, simultaneous use, “do what you want”, etc.

I’m a big supporter of “tools” for things but with them come the need to modify work processes to conform to the tool’s intended work process. In group situations not everyone so attuned and willing to modify their work process to meet the needs of the tools, nor the needs of the boss/leader for that matter.

I’ve had my best success when recognising that change in work processes required just for the sake of the tool is not really beneficial to the project/activity, I take the path of least resistance and then “sneak in” process as we go. Works better that some of the alternatives.