By Patti Hale
Outsourcing Marketplaces are where freelancers of all kinds will find work. As the name implies, this is a place where freelancers bid on outsourced work. Blog and website owners, companies, and some who call themselves “project managers” come here to hire writers, editors, graphic designers, translators and virtual assistants.
The truth is these places are where I have found the most work in the beginning. They are also the places where I have gotten the most frustrated.
Basically what you have to do to get hired at one of these places is to sign up (some ask for membership, some let you apply to jobs in just one field for free, and others are free to apply to all jobs) and then create a profile. A profile will consist of your résumé–your experience, your education and most importantly, your portfolio.
I didn’t have a “portfolio” when I first signed up at oDesk. Although I had twenty years experience writing, I didn’t have anything “online” that I could link to. I could and did upload Word documents of some of the few things that I had written and had saved copies of but these weren’t exactly on subjects that would help me get a job.
That’s when I signed up for my first “free” blog on WordPress. I loaded it with columns I had written while working at a newspaper (giving credit to them of course). I also got busy and wrote another couple of blogs that I put on Associated Content and Hub Pages. I then put links to my writing in my portfolio.
There were also “tests” I took to show how good I was in English, spelling and other subjects. I then began to look at jobs and send them my “proposals” which basically is a cover letter listing your experience and what you will charge for doing the job.
At first I just looked and didn’t apply so intimidated was I, lol! Then I sent out a few proposals, then some more and then some more. The only prospects that contacted me were people who wanted to have me write something as a “test”. They said they would hire me if they liked my writing. After writing their “test”, I never heard from them again and funny thing, they didn’t end up hiring anyone for the job they had posted. Why would they when they could get all of us “newbie’s” to write their stuff for them free!
How did they know I was a “newbie”? For one thing, contractors all have a feedback score based on ratings by employers from previous jobs. I didn’t have any “stars” which is how the feedback is rated (from one to five stars). So, I decided no matter how low I had to go bidding on a job, I was going to get me some “stars”! (One of the reasons pay is so low on these places as newcomers try to break in.)
Even lowering my pay expections was tough on the jobs I targeted —back-linking, web research, virtual assistant, etc. because these jobs were all going for $1 and $2 per hour! I have since learned that those who get many of these jobs are from overseas and happy to work for what I would consider low wages.
Finally, a job came up for five whole dollars for giving my opinion on a website. I applied and I got it! I spent an hour looking at the website and writing my opinion, sent it in and got five whole dollars. What’s more important, I also got five big stars!
Things did get easier after I started concentrating on the writing categories and continued to build my on-line portfolio.
Next I signed up for Elance and chose writing as my one free category and have had some success there, too. In fact, I think the pay is a little better at Elance and I was not approached by as many rip off artists.
I also have a portfolio on Guru but have not spent the time it takes to build a presence there. Personally, I think it would be difficult to have more than two or three of these type sites going at one time although I’m sure there are people who do it and find it helpful.
Now that you know a little more about what to expect, give these outsourcing marketplaces a try:
Find freelancing work from the most popular site for jobs for freelancers in one place. Has article writing job
My Experience: Registered but did not set up portfolio. This site is free to “Creatives” who compete with each other by submitting their finished work to employer who picks the winner. Pay is high; competition is fierce. Has some article writing jobs but is mostly for graphic and web designers.
Adds service fee of 8.75% onto quotes
Ten 10 proposals free per mth in one category
Memberships $10, $20 $40 gives you connects of 25, 40 & 60
More categories cost $5 per mth plus $10 per mth individual membership
Freelancers sell their services for $5 and clients get to request what they would like to have done for $5.
Free registration; given 32 bids per mth; job types to pick from: 25
Gold members can pick up to 50 job types for $24.95 per mth
$5 or 10% of contract added to proposals that employer pays.
Recently acquired vWorker and does some crowd sourcing competitions ala Crowd Spring.
UK based site for jobs for freelancing
Free to sign up and free to search
For programmers, designers, but also article writer jobs.
Five portfolio samples free
40 portfolio samples with premium membership (7.95 per mth)
“The typically rates are about seven times lower than the ones in the US or Europe.”
(These words came from the website; does not sound like the rates are too high here)
Buy Sell Services from $5 to $50 Bucks
The basic membership is free; Premium membership is $10 per mth
GreatLance takes 10% commission on Basic membership, none on premium.
Seems to have good paying writers jobs. Many writers from India; sentence structure on website does not seem to be from an English-speaking native.
Basic membership is free
Bid on one category with free membership; multiple bid categories requires membership
This is site for jobs that is apparently free to employers but not to freelancers.
Fees packages for freelancing work start at $6.25 and go up to $12 per month.
Currently down. Caption says “will return soon”
Some Hiring writers jobs
Aggregate for freelancing work from other sites
Article writing jobs available
No fee or registration
Free to bid on freelancing, free to post jobs
Adds 10% to bid of contractors that employers pay
People per Hour
Free membership gives 10 bids in 2 categories with a 10% commission.
Maximum skills listed in profile limited to 10.
Sends out emailed job announcement if you sign up for it.
Bidding in pounds! Headquartered in London
Some article writing jobs
Hiring is a little different here. . .instead of clients posting projects and freelancers bidding—-freelancers post what they will do for how much and the client shops. Similar to fiverr except pay is considerably more than $5 although many of the prices are still pretty low.
Outsourced Job Boards
Outsourced independent contracting jobs can also be found on free job boards that don’t charge a commission.
Type in the words “Work from Home” in the job Title field and leave the location blank and you will find many work from home positions. After you get the job search results you will be able to click on the category of your choice such as “customer service”, “Accounting”, “Sales” etc. You can also look through the list of companies and find jobs from the companies of your choice. Be careful, however, work from home scams are also listed on this site. If a job listing appears to try to sell you, seems too good to be true, or asks for any upfront pay, beware!
Find work from home jobs on Indeed by typing “work from home” in the job title/key words field and leaving the “where” or location field blank. In addition you can also click on the advanced search link and type in the words for the particular type of work you are looking for in the “at least one of these words” or the “exact phrase” field. Other words to try are “Freelance” and “Telecommute”. Be careful of the advertised links at the top and bottom of the page. Some, but not all, contain scams.
Use Telecommute, Work from Home, Freelance as the search terms.
Type in “Work from Home”, Telecommute” or “Freelance” in the Job Title or Keyword search and leave the location blank.
If you have questions, comments or would be so kind as to share your experience with us, please do so in the comments below.
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