In this time of financial crisis, many people try to look for ways to earn money in addition to their current salary. Living in a family with more than one child requires more income to give them comfortable living. To make ends meet, some may resort to networking, direct selling, answering paid surveys and the latest is online freelancing.
The Internet serves as a good venue for freelance job. It contributes to the growth of freelancing in many economies because the services can be made available to all parts of the globe. Outsourcing jobs to lower-cost regions like Philippines and India where labor may more inexpensively be employed, has encouraged the formation of many online services intended to produce a marketplace where freelance workers and potential employers can connect. The demand for freelance job has skyrocketed.
What Is A Freelancer?
According to Wikipedia “A freelancer, freelance worker, or freelance is a self-employed person who pursues a profession without a long-term commitment to any particular employer”. The practice of freelancing comes in different forms and circumstances. Some of them ask clients to sign contracts, while others may do work based on verbal agreements, possibly enforceable through the nature of the work. Some freelancers may provide written estimates of work and request deposits from clients to ensure payment.
Freelancers may charge daily, hourly, per page or on a per-project basis. As an alternative of a flat rate or fee, some freelancers have agreed to a value-based pricing method based on the professed value of the results to the client. The client has the say to determine the price. By practice, payment arrangements may be upfront, percentage upfront, or upon completion. For complicated projects, a contract may place a payment schedule based on outcomes.
Freelancers perform anything from writing to bookkeeping to computer programming. They are often hired by businesses for a particular project. It is actually a win- win situation where both parties can benefit. The small business owner gets the services without having to create a new position in his company to get the job done. The Freelancer gets to do what he loves from the comfort of his home.
How do the business owner and freelancer find each other? This can be made possible through one of the freelance sites. In fact, there are hundreds of freelance sites that are available today. Some offers free membership while some requires payment in addition to commission that the site can earn. We cannot also deny the fact that there are also entities that make use of the trend to take advantage from service providers. Freelancers must be careful in choosing a site where they want to render their services.
Top Ten Freelance Sites
What are the top ten freelance sites? Based on number of affiliates and popularity, the following freelance sites are listed below:
Guru is the largest freelance site out there. They connect over 520,000 freelancers with over 30,000 businesses and employers. Guru Inc. was founded in 1999 in San Francisco, and the company was acquired in December 2002 by Unicru a human resources software company based in Portland, Oregon. Guru's technology and staff remained with Unicru, focused on software to help large employers assess and hire job applicants. Unicru sold the Guru.com domain name and logo to eMoonlighter.com, and eMoonlighter was renamed Guru.com. The site is organized into more than 160 categories and subcategories from Web and Graphic Design to Programming to Business Consulting.
2. oDesk.com (previously known as No Desk)
oDesk lets employers (referred as buyers) to create online work teams in line and salaried through the company's proprietary software and website. Prospective employers can post jobs for free, and freelance workers may make profiles and bid on projects, also for free. The company puts prospective providers (also known as providers) through screening and series of examination. oDesk collects 10 percent of the payment received by the provider as a commission. Payment can be made hourly or on a fixed price basis. However, oDesk only guarantee payments for hourly jobs and not for fixed price. If you opt to apply for fixed basis, you have to bear the risk that some buyers will not pay after the project is completed. The only way you can act against the fraudulent buyer is to leave a negative comment on his profile, but you can no longer enforce payment.
oDesk team also allows buyers to see a provider's progress while he or she is billing time. A screen shot will take place every ten minutes to monitor work in progress. This will give assurance to the buyer that the provider is really working on the project.
Elance is another big player when it comes to freelance sites. It covers a wide variety of freelance work. Like Guru.com and oDesk.com buyers can bid projects related to administrative support, writing and even computer programming. The nice thing about elance is that the site imposed a minimum amount where providers can bid. As of writing, the minimum hourly rate is 5dollars which is reasonable compared to some with no minimum amount. This can serve as a protection to some providers.
This freelance site caters mainly to programmers, coders, software engineers and IT professionals in general. Projects are related to information technology, web development and computer programming. The membership is also free but in order to avail of all the benefits, members need to upgrade by paying a reasonable fee.
In addition to obtaining projects posted on an assortment of subjects, you will also discover a wide collection of articles created by freelancers as well services and products, a forum and a newsletter. These outputs can be later sold to buyers in a price agreed by both buyer and provider.
It is another auction-like site where you can bid on projects that interest you most. The categories of jobs are more limited compared to others but you can make money by telling all your friends about this great service. You will receive referral bonuses on top of your usual income.
7. eWork Exchange.com
Part of its registration process requires creating your online resume which can be added to by building a skill profile to go with it. Looking for jobs is very fast and simple. If you find something that interests you, you can e-mail the project owner along with your comments with the use of a private profile number. You will not receive any direct contact information until you accept the project. They have over 170,000 members.
Scriptlance is another venue for web designers and programmers. Sometimes there are projects related to administrative support like accounting, but their specialization is more on information technology. The membership is free but you have to pay for commission once you successfully won the bidding. Project listings are updated every time a new project is posted.
This is a fast growing site with more than hundreds of thousands of providers. Applying for a job is relatively simple. You need not to pay for membership fee. All you have to do is to subscribe from them for free and receive job alerts. If you think your credentials match the job description, you can apply for the job immediately. You can leave private message to the project owner or be interviewed in real time.
This freelance site is considered as one of the world’s best online services marketplaces, bringing together thousands of talented service providers and qualified buyers from around the globe on a single platform. You can Post your requirements for free, view detailed provider profiles with past work and run pilot projects before making a selection. The graphical interface is well designed and pleasing to the eyes.
The main drawback is the insecurity of work, income, and lack of company benefits like pension, health insurance, paid holidays and bonuses. Unlike in a traditional set up where employees have security of tenure and benefits, freelance job cannot offer long term work and guarantee income. This is one of the reasons why some providers work for part time rather than full time.
On the part of the buyer, although there are some ways they can monitor work in progress, they cannot be assured that the task has been performed by the provider. Some providers are just playing games in the net or just doing their facebook thing while the buyer is being billed.
There are also sites that offer limited job postings. Sometimes the providers are greater in numbers compared to job posting. The competition is very stiff. Some providers are acting so unfair by bidding at very low price.
The benefits of online freelance jobs are enormous. Freelancers are flexible; they can self-set their work schedule; work anytime of the day; work from home or elsewhere, and can get as many freelance projects as they want. Online freelancing allows for better mobility, and also cuts down certain commuter expenses usually incurred in commuting from house to work and vice versa.
The benefits to businesses and other entities hiring freelancers are also huge. Freelancing permits companies to best meet their project requirements with the skills of particular service providers. Freelance jobs remove the time and expenses relevant with training particularly when the needed skills differ from project to project. Furthermore, freelance jobs free employers from the liability to pay for full-time employment which also includes paying benefits, health insurance, vacation pay, and sick leave. By getting an online freelance expert, businesses also find a lower-cost solution to the conventional consulting companies and recruiting agencies that normally charge higher fees. Hiring freelancers for smaller-scale projects is the most cost-efficient solution for many companies.
If you are considering of supplementing your current income or perhaps getting rid of your present job, paid internet jobs is the right option for you. There are many paid internet jobs and opportunities on the network market.
With paid online freelance jobs, you can work from the comfort of your home, set your own work schedule, and earn dollars without going out of the country, working by yourself minus any demanding boss to follow and with a freedom that you have never imagined. Now it is possible to stay at home and make money with free real work at home jobs.