If you want short-term jobs, great personal experience, and make money – freelancing might be your gig. Shirley gives you some reasons why to consider this exciting route.
What exactly is a ‘freelancer’?
The ‘ever-faithful’ Wikipedia defines the term freelancer as
“a term commonly used for a person who is self-employed and is not necessarily committed to a particular employer long-term.”
A freelancer is someone who uses their skills to earn money, working for several people and on several projects at a time – or taking on one project at a time, however they decide. If you freelance, you can determine your own fee based on hourly, daily, or weekly schedules which allow for more flexibility in your earning potential. For students, this is the difference between slaving away at your waitressing job or spending a few hours crafting a beautiful logo for a client.
Why You Should Consider Going Freelance
Freelancing is something everyone can and should consider doing – especially as a student. Students are often exploited for their skills and paid very little in the name of gaining ‘experience.’ With freelancing, you have the opportunity to get paid and gain experience!
Here are some reasons to consider:
You Have Epic Skills
Using your skills to make money is a smart way to gain experience and begin to understand what you can expect in your field of work. For example, a freelance journalist can consider writing articles for magazines, newspapers and online websites in order to gain experience in the field of writing, as well as gain important contacts in the field – all while making decent money for the skills- score!
You Like to Be the Boss
Your own boss, that is.
Sure, we all like to be our own boss, but what this really means is that you’re willing to push yourself to work hard and put yourself out there. In the freelancing world, there is nobody to hide behind. Being your own boss means that you alone are responsible for the quality and quantity of work you deliver. It also means that you are responsible for your own schedule.
You Want to Do More with Your Time
Is the 9 – 5 lifestyle not enough for you? Being a freelancer allows you to work flexibly. You can wake up, go to bed and work whenever you want and you have the option of working wherever there is a decent internet connection (book that table at your favourite coffee shop!). By having the flexibility to work whenever and wherever you want you can prioritise other things in your life, like those assignments you never end up getting around to!
You Could Use the Extra Cash Dollar
Despite the term freelance, being a freelancer is not at all about using your skills for free. In fact, working as a freelancer means you have access to as many microjobs jobs as you can manage, which allows you to determine how much money you make as a freelancer (What student budget?!).
How and Where Do I Start Freelancing?
There are so many ways to begin freelancing. Here are a few.
Online via Jobox
A smart way to begin freelancing is to create a profile on an awesome website like Jobox which caters for freelancers and clients and will allow you to search for microjobs you are interested in. Using a website to facilitate your freelance work means that you have a safe and hassle-free way of connecting with potential clients.
Jobox for example, uses a rating and review system so that clients and freelancers have a reputation based on past work when posting applying to jobs which means that your selection for a job is more than just about your price.
If you would rather go old school, consider putting posters up around your campus or community, letting potential clients know what skills you have and what work you are available to do. Remember to include a contact number which people can tear off and keep to get in touch with you if they are interested in what you have to offer.
Word of Mouth
Put the word out there! Let your friends and family know that you are available for freelance work and get the word out there. Pretty soon you’ll have a friend of a friend of a friend getting in touch with you to find out if you’re willing to freelance!
EduConnect 2 Cents
Whether you’re simply trying to earn a bit more money or whether you’re looking to bolster your CV with experience in your field, freelancing can be an awesome way to learn what it means to work for yourself. In an economic climate which is uncertain, it is important to consider the many avenues for gaining experience, creatively challenge yourself and earn money. Get out there and see what you can do to begin freelancing!