Platforms Like Upwork Are Enhancing The Freelance Experience
The global trend of freelancing has enjoyed a long and prosperous past, and it appears to have an even brighter future. Let’s explore.
The Stats Are Appealing For Both Businesses And Talent Large & Small
- By 2020, freelancers are projected to account for anywhere from 40% to 50% of the workforce.
- In 216, Upwork and other online staffing platforms saw over $5 billion in transactions.
- Collaboration through human cloud portals make it possible for freelance and remote employees to perform with the same insider knowledge as in-house employees, collaborate efforts, and add special skills not available in-house, making it possible for small businesses once comprised of several dozen employees to operate with just a fraction of previous numbers and large companies to streamline business that may have multiple locations across the globe.
- Whereas the average time to fill a role traditionally from local talent was at least a month, online freelance jobs are filled in less than a week, and done so from broader pool of talent from across the globe.
- As of 2015, most freelancers make more than traditional employees in most countries.
How Did Freelance Work Originate To What It Is Today
Long before the vast connectivity of the internet was realized, journalists without a regular gig or that hadn’t established themselves yet would mail, hand-submit, and eventually email work to publishers as a one-off sell. The same with computer geeks and website designers working as independent agents. It’s been going on for decades, but these freelancers didn’t have benefits nor salary guarantees afforded to traditional employees. In the 2000s, this changed as groups like Freelancers Union and Elance began providing advocacy services and insurance for freelancers and lobbying for better tax benefits.
What still lacked, however, were platforms like Upwork, which is able to connect business, non-profit, and various other organizations with these independent professionals in a bubble of trust, visibility, and mutual benefit. Basically, workers can find jobs with payment protection safeguards and businesses get a larger, more versatile pool to dip their hiring fingers into as they need. And, it works; Upwork is steadily building on its 140 million users across 180 countries.
Today, freelancing is just a broad term subcategorized by the various aspects of the gig economy. For example, you have the proficians representing hipster entrepreneurs, precarians performing interchangeable and repetitive tasks on a temporary or permanent basis, digital nomads working as they wish from wherever they wish, and slashers performing moonlight and side work in addition to a regular job. And, the people engaged aren’t just those seeking a temporary fix until they’re established. From those already retired to students, Upwork sees all sorts of freelancers.
Whether your skill is expert to novice level, writing to web design in nature, and whether you’d like to devote your time occasionally or for extended periods, Upwork can help connect you with clients looking for just what you’re offering.
What Do You Need To Be A Remote Worker?
All it takes is a reliable internet connection and laptop or PC to get started.
Going from salaried to freelance can take a bit of adjustment, and do keep in mind that it typically takes around six months to brand yourself on a freelance platform if you’re wanting a steady influx of work offers to actively support yourself.
As your own tax consult, finance manager, salesperson for yourself, and project supervisor, you’ll have the total burden of everything the work entails from promoting yourself to paying income taxes.
Upwork also recommends to ensure you have a compelling bio and quality sample work. It’s important to understand that reputation is vital to be successful on any freelance platform; you’ll need a solid history of great feedback in order to score the highest paying jobs.
Platforms Like Upwork Enhance the Freelance Experience
Most platforms take a percentage fee to connect clients and professionals and ensure payment. Upwork charges 20% up to $500. It drops to 10% thereafter. This fee is the cost of having a well-positioned matchmaker between your skills and work needs and clients looking to immediately utilize them.