As a freelancer, there is potential to make a great deal of money online due to the increase of internet usage in the workplace, the subsequent improvement of communication and the vast number of companies now looking to outsource work due to these two factors.
However, many freelancers will know that not all jobs are as worth you time as others. To become a worthwhile professional in your field, part of the learning curve is understanding which jobs to take and which to steer clear of. Luckily, most jobs that should be left alone have warning signs which should send alarm bells ringing in your head.
Try a few of these steps to prevent getting burnt by bad outsourcers:
Although Craigslist has become a popular site for gaining obscure but interesting freelance writing projects, there are very little precautions to prevent you from being scammed unwittingly by false employers. You are far better off using a legitimate and highly rate freelance website such as Elance as a platform for searching for work.
Websites such as Elance have strict policies against misleading or misrepresentative jobs, and an active team help to seek out any opportunities posted that seem to be a scam. This offers protection that you cannot gain from websites such as Craigslist.
If a job is offering a very vague description of work, it is likely to be a scam or to be a ‘balloon job’. This means that once the job is accepted, they will tack on extra responsibilities that they require you to complete for the same price.
Projects with very specific job descriptions enable you to clearly understand what is required from the employer, without an misconceptions about the hours that will need to be spent and the earnings that you will require for that time.
Jobs with very low budgets are not worth your time and effort. These particular employers are looking for you to generate work at a price which is usually under the legal minimum pay rate and certainly below and the skill and quality level you will be offering.
Especially heed this warning if the employer promises to increase the amount with future work, or provide a high quantity of work in the future. The likelihood of either of these things is very slim.
This is one of the oldest outsourcer scams in the freelancing book. After reading your proposal and viewing samples of your work, outsourcers may ask you to complete a sample piece specific to their task. This should always be paid.
Scams of this variety often have very specific job descriptions to give the impression of professionalism. However, once they have received your free sample, they cancel the listing and you never hear from them again. They will usually do this to several people who apply, effectively having the task completed for free. Always charge the correct worth for a sample piece; any real professional organization will be appreciative of this.
Other varieties of this scam will require you to list everything you know about a certain topic so that employers can see whether you have a comprehensive enough knowledge of the topic. Freelancers who are extremely passionate about the job have been known to research the topic for hours to supply enough data, some even enrolling on distance learning courses. Employers take this information, use it themselves and report that you’re not good enough for the job.
Never hand anything over unpaid.
The feedback system on freelance websites isn’t reserved solely for potential employers to determine whether you’re suitable for their job placements; the feedback can tell you what kind of employer they are. If a client has previously exhibited professionalism towards freelancers in the past, the feedback is your opportunity to protect yourself from this.
Always looks for feedback which is positive across the board. It is always best to look for clients who have posted several jobs previously and received good feedback as this shows consistency and reliability across a longer term.
Occasionally, immoral jobs will slip through the net of freelancing websites. These include jobs requiring plagiarism, cheating, copyright infringement and hacking. Any job with questionable morality may not be a good decision as it can damage your professional reputations and legal ramifications in the future.
Understanding which jobs to avoid when freelancing is as important as knowing how to write a proposal or hows to approach a job. Not only can the wrong job be damaging to your finances, it is also a waste of time and can harm your professional reputation. Make sure to always follow the above steps, and alert the correct authorities to any jobs that seem to be scamming freelancers or asking for immoral actions.
Benjamin Baker is a freelance writer with a keen interest in fishing. He says the secret to being a successful writer is the ability to stay ahead of the game, very much like fishing. He compares fishing to writing by saying that the key is to continually learn new things about the field, whether it be learning to tie your own fly in fishing or the skills need for SEO work when writing.
Like http://www.ecourseclassroom.com, he recommends that aspiring writers take e-learning courses to brush up on their knowledge and improve their skills.