Freelancing could be defined as working to work.
It takes time, effort and perseverance to get work in this fashion at a steady rate. You have to market yourself, your experience and content on various platforms and you have to keep it fresh. Stale storefronts on your portfolio are obvious. Lately, I have been working extra hard if you will, to get some freelance work and I found a great medium for not only placing a profile and portfolio, but also one that helps you manage transactions.
Click the logo to go to the site
It’s called UpWork. UpWork asks you to work initially by submitting a lengthy profile and instead of just submitting your portfolio URL, you must upload individual project files. It may seem daunting, but it’s what you gotta do.
Once you build a profile, you must get it approved. Once approved, you can filter their millions of bids for work. You narrow it down by your speciality and have a certain number of responses you can give to jobs a month. If you have the free version like me, you get about 60 responses or “connects” as they call them, a month and use anywhere from 1-5 when you submit to bid. It’s like currency, so you have to be intentional about the work you choose. They don’t rollover month-to-month unless you have an upgraded plan, but you do start fresh each month with 60.
When you find a job you want to do, you submit and place in your price. On your profile, you give your professional level and place your hourly rate accordingly. Those who place bids or have jobs to offer can verify payment before they post to the job board. That brought me a level of comfort when submitting my profile to a proposal, it was like a guarantee of sorts.
So I submitted a proposal to a bid last night for voice over work. I was notified today they’ll hire me and I accepted the offer! Once you get into an UpWork contract, you must fill out a W-9 and verify a way to receive payment. This establishes your accounts safely and ensures you will get paid when you are done with the work.
“The exhilarating ripple of her voice was a wild tonic in the rain.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
UpWork in a nutshell:
A little work upfront pays off in the end. I must tell you that they do take a percentage of your earnings off the top. So let’s say you agree to do a contract for 120 dollars payment, you will get 96 bucks after UpWork takes their fee. This might be a mega-drawback for some, but for me, I am grateful for the platform to get things rolling! If you keep the dashboard open while you complete your work, you can take advantage of the in-app timer for making sure you track your hours. You might be disciplined in doing this, but I am not so it makes me happy!
I have some work to do and money to earn so signing off for now. Take it easy friends.