Freelance work can have a tremendous appeal. Whether you hope to make it a full-time career or just use it as a chance to earn a little cash, it can seem like the perfect lifestyle. When you work as a freelancer, you can make money from home, work while you are traveling, work around your children or other commitments and work when it suits you. You can take on more work when you need extra cash and take time off when you need it. You set your hours, your rates and work in a way to fits your lifestyle. Doesn’t that sound fantastic?
Of course, it’s not all perfect. You won’t get holiday pay, you have to do your accounts and declare your income, and you have to learn how to manage your own time. But, these issues are all easy to manage once you get used to things. Especially if you’ve got effective systems in place. Here is everything that you need to get started as a freelancer.
Many new freelancers worry that they won’t get work because of a lack of experience. But, it’s not as crucial as it is in the traditional workplace. Talent is much more important. Think about what you are good at, what you can do that other people would pay money for and perhaps more importantly, what you could do that will make you happy. Writing, photography, graphic design, and working as a freelance VA or social media manager are all great options.
So, you’ve got a talent, but little to no experience, how are you going to get work? With a portfolio. Create some sample pieces, that show your work in a variety of different styles and niches. Make sure this work is all perfectly presented and shows off your skills at their best. Think of it as an extension of your CV.
Wherever your talent lies if you want to make it as a freelancer you’ll need the right equipment to help you to get the job done well. This could be a high-quality laptop, camera or design software. You can always start with the minimum you need and upgrade as you become more established.
You also need the right software. This will depend on what you are doing and could include word processing or photo editing tools. But, there are also a few things that all freelancers should use. Firstly, you’ll need proofreading tools to make sure your writing is all perfect. Even if you work as a photographer or designer, it can be useful for emails and other professional correspondence. You’ll also need a spreadsheet or app to help you keep track of your income, receipts, invoices and expenses. Get this all set up before you even make money, so nothing has a chance to get lost.
Then, of course, you need work. It can be a good idea to look at freelance sites like Upwork to find your first jobs. But, try to find some long-term clients to keep the work coming in without having to spend time finding it whenever a job is finished.