The workforce is dramatically changing. Due to globalization, advancements in technology and the work habits of the younger generation, more and more people are becoming (or turning to) freelancers. Instead of hitting the concrete jungle Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., individuals are transitioning their careers into freelancers, whether it’s as a writer, graphic designer or web developer.
For those who are enticed by the idea of setting your own schedule, working wherever you please and not having to answer to anyone other than your clients, it can be rather difficult and daunting to know where to begin. Let’s face it. Each year, new websites launch, others shut down and new technology arises.
It does take a lot of work and determination to be a freelancer, both part-time and full-time. A set schedule, concentration, a strong work ethic and a good computer are some of the important elements to attaining clients, making them happy and gain even more customers that will pay well.
Furthermore, the mindset and financial acumen of freelancers have to be different from those who work on-site. There are some months will work will be dry or a client is postponing a project another month. This means you have to prepare far in advance, such as buying items at the grocery store that are on sale in bulk or saving enough money to cover your expenses for a month of zero income.
Right now, the top freelance jobs are in just about any field: advertising, IT, writing, sales, administration, design, illustration and anything else. It’s important to note, though, that some fields you need to call and find out if the company is searching for freelancers to fill in for those on maternity, sick or vacation leave.
Of course, not everyone can work from home, remotely or off-site. Whether some would like to admit it or not, there are a significant number of workers who need structure, a supervisor and an office that isolates them from their personal life, Facebook (yeah, right!) and chores.
However, if you have realized that freelancing and working from home is the right thing for you to do then be sure to check out the websites below to find work or begin writing today:
For those who want to start building a portfolio, Helium is a great venue to do so. Although the pay isn’t the greatest, it offers an arena for writers to perfect their craft and to gain even more opportunities. On the website, there are freelance opportunities that pay the average market rate and community participation is great for your online resume.
This website has lots of competition from all over the world. It can be certainly hard to be awarded a job when someone from India, Nigeria or the Philippines is willing to write 1,000 words, design a 10-page website or transcribe a conference call for $1, which is tempting to some clients. Nevertheless, the opportunities are endless on Elance. The key is persistence.
Instead of perusing Craig’s List, Kijiji, Blogger Pro and a wide variety of job websites that could take a long time, freelancewritinggigs.com gives jobseekers a compiled list of writing jobs from an array of outlets all over the United States and Canada.
Similar to Elance, oDesk is also difficult to obtain a freelance job, but there are a lot of opportunities for all kinds of experts. Its account process is quite thorough unlike Elance, but if you’re a dedicated freelancer then it’s important to take the tests, upload a photo and list your experience.
For Canadian freelancers, this is a website quite similar to FreelanceWritingGigs.com. It lists a large number of job ads from Craig’s List, Kijiji and others for writers, editors, reporters, transcribers and anything else involving the pen.
If you’re a picture snatcher, reporter or editor then JournalismJobs.com is a another good website to browse around. Most of the employment opportunities are for well-known media outlets, such as Sun Media, CBC, Huffington Post and others.
Examiner.com is comparable to Helium, but the pay can be a lot higher, though the quality is quite questionable. Regardless, for those just entering the business and want to put something on their resume or in their portfolio, Examiner.com is another great place to start – some writers actually create job postings on their own channel. Just remember that the pay isn’t the greatest in the world.
In the end, don’t expect to be pulling in $50,000 a year. It’s best to start out working a part- or full-time job with freelancing as supplementary income (think of it as a 90-10 ratio). As time goes on, and everything goes well, the ratio could eventually shift to 10-90 and then 0-100.