You can call me whatever you want, but I prefer Ms. Critic.
On your Mark, Get Set, Go! That’s exactly how I feel every time I receive a message from the freelance websites stating that I have a Project Match. My heart begins to race and I think to myself -am I too late, how many other freelance writers have put in their bid? And, I never really calm down until I go on the site and notice the extent of my competition.
For those who are not aware of what Freelance Bidding entails here’s the skinny. Freelance bidding goes something like this -Employers post a project- freelancers bid- employer chooses a freelancer-and that’s it. Companies have provided portals where employer and prospective employee can connect. Elance, IFreelance, Guru, and other websites provide this bidding service for free, excuse me I mean for a fee. Yes, for a fee any type of freelancer is able to set up accounts, market their skills, and bid on available projects. The companies are capitalizing, I mean providing a way for freelancers to gain employment. That’s the skinny. Before I forget, depending on the type of project it is and also depending upon the amount the employer is willing to pay there are often multiple bids. Enough competition to keep the heart racing. Luck has nothing or everything to do with landing a freelance project. If that statement confuses you please feel free to read it again.
Even with my writing background and education it is still difficult for me to win projects. So the question of the day is should freelancers use the freelance bidding portals to obtain work? After listening to me gripe about the freelance bidding process, a friend of mind suggested that I look at things as if I were going on a job interview. Her statement went something like this – Miko, when we apply for jobs, we compete against many qualified applicants. Of course, what she said had some truth to it, however I had a word for her. My argument went a little like this -Friend, yes we compete for jobs however, with the numerous free job websites like Monster, Career Builder, and others too many to mention we can post our resumes for free. Let’s not forget the simplicity of looking through your local classified ads. How much money are we losing by doing this? Just say I drive to an interview sit for an hour with the employer and return home. The next day I receive an email stating that I did not get the position, how much money did I lose? Possibly gas money that was guzzled out as I traveled to and from the interview. Perhaps I stopped by the store and grabbed a pack of cigarettes and hard candy. Maybe, I bought a new interview suit and spent extra getting a manicure. At any rate, the freelance bidding web portals charge me more than a new suit, pack of cigs, hard candy, and gas would. My friend had a final word for me and she stated, “one has to spend money, in order to make money.” I didn’t have a reply for that statement.
The upshot of things is this -if you have a well-put together portfolio, positive customer feedback, and know how to market your skills you are able to bid on freelance projects and win the bid. How long it will take? How much money does a destitute out of work freelancer have to spend to get to the point? Don’t know the answer to either of those questions. I do know that smart business people succeed. The founders of Elance, Guru, and IFreelance are smart; they creatively executed lucrative business ventures. For the most part my conventional wisdom is that a person should play the game and then learn how to succeed at the game from the big players.
As always I end this review with -I believe in journalistic expression and freedom of the press. I will never through my reviews attempt to shove my beliefs down someone else’s throat. I am a critic but this doesn’t mean I am critical. To the best of my ability I will evaluate and review fairly. If I offend anyone in the process of telling it like I see it, well, it’s never my intention to offend so therefore –
Get over it.
My final review of Freelance Bidding- it’s Fair Play.
Next week Review: Faster Internet Service: Real or Illusion?