Freelancing is an enticing profession where you as an individual get to choose- which projects you work on, what you charge and how long you work in a week etc. It is a type of self-employment. In this dynamic world, people prefer to have a perfect work life balance and a good control over their career. This is not surprising when you consider the benefits and freedom of being your own boss.
Every country has its own laws and types of business structures for freelancers. Factors such as legal entity that you work under, tax, insurance policy, client list management, contract and business account maintenance play a major role. You would be on your own where you handle all the responsibility. There would be irregular payments depending on goodwill of your clients and amount of work you handle. Hence, it may take a lot of patience and perspiration to get started but, being a successful freelancer is achievable. It is rewarding in terms of choosing your own clients, deciding when-how-where to work and keeping all the profits for yourself.
Types of freelancing roles
Now, if you are wondering what roles freelancers play- the answer is almost everything. From UI/UX design and content writing to financial modelling and software development, they are experts in their respective domains where they work independently. Freelancers generally use a combination of personal branding and network to make more than the industry average.
Steps to be a successful freelancer
How often do you motivate yourself and upgrade your skills? Do you manage your time? Are you good at meeting your deadlines and can you multitask?
Skills and evaluation
What are your strengths? Do you stay up-to-date with latest industry trends? How important is building a portfolio?
Do you maintain a budget? Have you worked on aspects such as pricing, taxation, retirement benefits and accounts?
In order to work, you would need a workspace. How would you arrange that? How long would it take to set up the right equipment?
Do you enjoy marketing yourself? Do you maintain your social media sites, SEO and portfolio? Would you consider competitor analysis by conducting a market research?
Do you accept offers only when you can commit with passion? Would you strive for the top rating status? Do you enjoy a network with other freelancers to build a community?
These are a few questions in a step by step process that guide you through this exciting journey of being a successful freelancer. Ask yourself all the questions and when your answers are positive, you definitely deserve to be a successful professional in the world of freelancing.
However, just by mere creation of a social media portfolio, you might not be able to build a huge client base. Hence, it is important to apply or register on a freelancing site that can helps in finding work for the skills you have. There are many such organisations like Toptal, Upwork, Gigster, Freelancer, Freeeup, CrossOver, BairesDev, Number8, Pilot or Turning; that gather driven freelancers and reputed clients who need support. They link them based on the right skills and also provide a medium of assessments, upgrades and negotiations.
Toptal is one such organisation. It is the best of its kind and stands as an established freelance network that links reputed clients with highly evaluated talent. It constantly strives to find and work with the best professionals around the world. The firm asserts that this stringent evaluation helps it narrow down the 3% of the freelance talent that succeeds.
How does Toptal work?
Clients who are willing to hire freelancers submit their requirements and job description online. Toptal’s internal team then gets in touch with the client to gain insights and an in-depth understanding about the role. Toptal then tries to match or find the suitable freelancer within their talent pool or screen new ones.
During the evaluation stage, the client can always interview and evaluate the recommended freelancers. Then, they enter into a contract agreement with an initial deposit from client and start with a trial period. With their no-risk trail period policy, client can choose to continue working or request for a replacement or withdraw from the agreement. The client can review the freelancer’s work and then approve payments with their flexible payment solutions.
Toptal focuses on hiring high quality freelancing talent. This talent pool is known for its proficiency, excellence and experience with reputable organisations. Toptal’s detailed comprehension of job requirements makes it a highly personalised match. Thus, Toptal is the industry leader in vetted freelance networks and is undoubtedly an established brand collaborating with many large companies.