Start your freelancing career with oDesk–beginners guide
What is oDesk?
oDesk is a marketplace where freelance contractors post their resume and employers search for the providers to fit their best need. On odesk, there’s a lot of opportunities; from data entry to graphics design, from virtual assistant to project manager, from website developer to creative media works. No matter what you can do, you can join for free and work with this platform.
I was actualy searching for home based internet related work, that can be done at any time, from anywhere according to my leisure time and opportunity. At last the opportunity came in January 10, 2010 when one of my friends told me about oDesk. I signed up for odesk and created my work profile after taking necessary tests. I got the first opportunity to work with an Australian employer who helps me a lot to gather experience about html and word press.
There are two types of odesk jobs; one is fixed price which means your employer wants you to do this job and will pay you when you complete the task. Fixed price job may take a lot of time to complete and the payment is not guaranteed. After completing the job, it’s upto the employer if they will or how much they will pay.
Hourly job means you will be paid on per hour basis. For this, you have to download oDesk team application and install it on your computer. When you get an hourly job, you can then log in using the app and log your work hours. The app will take one screen shot of your desktop every 10 minutes and keep the record of your activity. This way your employer can track your work progress. Hourly jobs are better because the payment is guaranteed and the cummulative time will be added to your profile.
Building your profile
At the beginning, you have to pass the odesk readiness test to be able to apply for the jobs. After passing odesk readiness test, you will be able to submit only two applications in a weak. After passing more tests and verifying your identity, you will be able to submit upto 25 applications per weak. Add your skills, get all of your works and fill out details work experience so that your portfolio looks great.
For the beginers to get the first job is really frustrating. You have created a profile, applied for jobs and waiting for your buyers call for an interview, but no response from the employers. The main reason why employres don’t hire new contractors is that they have no work history and experience and nothing to show on their portfolio. Put a few work examples on your portfolio, pass a few more relevant tests, upload a good photo and add more details on your profile.
Your first impression is your cover letter. Write something special when you apply for a job. Put some work examples, give them a few methods to get in touch with you like have Skype ID, and give them a reason why they will hire you? Don’t apply for the job that you have no experience. Attached work sample with the cover letter if you have. Don’t give your email, telephone, Skype ID etc. during application as this will breach the odesk user agreement policy.Few tips for new contractors:
- Don’t ever think that there’s a lot of competition in odesk. There’s always new opportunities and lot of more work than actual providers, so be on it.
- Try to be on all of the major communication methods such as yahoo messenger, google talk, AIM, skype and email to make sure the buyer can reach you when they need.
- Try to provide a solution to your buyer and if you are unable to do it, don’t keep them hanging.
- Look for the solution and only solution not for the money. In your freelance career, the feedback is the most important thing to achieve.
- Don’t set a low price on your profile; try to keep it competitive and few dollars low if you are getting started.
- Keep connect with your buyer and send them work updates regularly.
- It’s a good thing to build up a friendship with the buyer. It will result further trust and work opportunities in the future.
- If you have enough tasks in hand, don’t apply for more work.
- It’s possible to work even more hours for more money, but please do take breaks and day offs.
- Increase your hourly wage over time as you work more and gathered more reputation.
Yeah, after all of this bragging, you might wanna know about my odesk profile. Well I’m doing fine with odesk and it took me less than one month to get my first assignment. You can take a look at my profile on oDesk and can also hire me.