Freelancing has today, gained tremendous popularity as a growing work at home business trend. Before the advent of the internet freelancing has long been recognized as a reputable profession and freelance workers were sometimes valued more than regular, permanent staff members. With the internet?s help however, more opportunities for freelancers are available and at a growing number. More people are able to work at home and more companies and organizations are able to contract out their projects instead of hiring regular employees.
Freelance as a word was first coined by Sir Walter Scott, a renowned Scottish historical novelist and poet, in 1819 when he wrote his novel Ivanhoe, to refer to a medieval mercenary warrior. However, over the years the term has shifted into more figurative meanings. In the 1860s, freelance became a figurative noun, and in 1903, it was officially recognized as a verb by etymologists like the Oxford English Dictionary.
This shift has continued and today Working as a freelancer has become a career and lifestyle choice. It has given more people a variety of benefits and these people feel that there is no better option than the ones they have due to the flexibility of work.
According to recent studies, freelance jobs account for 20 percent of contracted graphic designs, web designs and software development in the world. To go freelance is a career choice and freelance jobs offer freelancers with plenty of opportunities and benefits.
Why Will You Want To Go Freelance?
There are various reasons why many people today choose to leave the security of their day jobs and engage in freelance work. Some of these reasons are:
1. Variety Of Jobs – More people are drawn to go freelance for this reason alone. Freelance work offers a greater variety of assignments compared to regular employment. And with the internet offering more opportunities, freelancing becomes a mine for those who seek good opportunities and better projects, not to mention higher paying jobs. A freelancer can also take on different jobs at one time. He/She can write feature articles while designing a website.
2. Fast Turnaround Of Projects – Most freelance jobs are time bound. These jobs are usually done fast and allows freelancers to move on to new projects as soon as they finish the job.
3. More Freedom, More Flexibility – Going freelance can give a person the freedom to choose the place, date and manner in which to do work. Though some freelancing schemes require contracts, freelance still spells a no employer-no employee relationship. Freelance work offers more freedom for someone who does not want to be confined in an 8 to 5 or 9 to 6 work scheme. The freelancer is free to choose his working hours and be his/her own boss. Because of the freedom in work schedule, freelancing gives a person more time to pursue other interests or take on more jobs. Other freelancers also consider the fact that they can even take care of their family better as soon as they start working freelance.
4. Improved Income And Savings – Freelance workers can usually command higher income rates for their projects because they are hired for their specific talents and skills. This is a big plus because they are paid high but do not have to work full time. Though income rates for freelancers vary, most of them still benefit from the setup. They charge either by the hour, by the day, or on per-project. Others use value-based pricing methods instead of imposing a flat rate. Payments are arranged based on the agreement, and could be done upfront, percentage upfront or paid whenever the project is completed. For others, a staggered payment scheme may be agreed upon.
Before You Decide On Becoming a Freelance Worker
With the promise of becoming their own boss and working from the comfort of home many people rush into becoming freelance workers. However, it is a good thing, before taking a plunge into this work at home business idea, to ask yourself if you do have what it takes to go freelance.
Here are a few tricks and considerations:
1. Determine the amount of money that you?ll need to earn to sustain your expenses. If you have a day job now, you will be saving a great deal of money once you make your shift to freelance employment. If you begin to work at home, you will save a lot of money from commuting, food, taxes, and more.
2. Take a self-assessment test and list all your skills and experiences. Include your hobbies and interests too, as doing this will determine what types of freelance jobs you can take on. Do you keep a personal website? Then perhaps you can take on freelance web design. Do you keep a personal blog? Then you can take on writing jobs. If you know how to do searches in the internet then you can write about any topic that may be given to you.
3. Visit internet web sites offering freelance jobs to see what jobs are currently offered. Take notes and keep a list of these jobs. You should also be on the lookout for companies and organizations that use freelancers for their projects. Look at how much they pay freelancers and take note of the different rates they offer for different projects. Keep a list of these important details as they will surely help you later in estimating how much you should charge for any given project.
4. From the notes you have gathered; try to create an estimate costing of the projects you have identified should the projects be given to you. Keep in mind the number of days given to the projects you have identified. When you have done this, you will be able to see how much you could potentially earn.
5. After doing all of the above, you can now start applying for the freelance jobs that you have identified. These jobs will help you earn some amount that you can later use after quitting you day job.
6. Once you have confirmed that the projects have been awarded to you, use a table to plot specific data about them. Write down all the information about these projects such as contact persons and their contact details and number of days to complete the projects.
7. As you begin freelance work, you will start to feel the flow of freelance employment. Bear in mind that you will not get all the projects that you want so you should apply for different jobs. However, be careful when taking on several jobs. Remember that you should not take on more jobs than you could handle.
8. You are now ready to quit your day job when you have developed an effective system of doing freelance work. But since you are doing freelance work, you should be able to track your jobs and their payment schedules.
Indeed today, freelancers can easily find work through the internet. The internet has been a good facilitator of freelancers and employers around the world. These jobs can range from writing short articles to language tutors to architectural designs. The demand to complete projects through freelancing is still very high, as shown by the thousands of projects posted in the Internet. If you have always thought of working from home then this is the time to do it.