Our economic turmoil has hastened the demise of many jobs and businesses, but it’s also creating its share of opportunities. One such opportunity is the growth of freelance jobs.
Employers are posting jobs and projects on freelancer and work-at-home websites at a faster clip than they did prior to the recession. Elance.com, a website for freelance designers, programmers, lawyers, writers and others, reports having 21, 179 new jobs posted in the last 30 days. ODesk.com, a website for freelance programmers and web designers, reports a 16% increase in the number of jobs posted on their site over the last month (4,515 jobs currently open). Other freelancer sites report an increase in the number of freelancers setting up profiles and bidding on jobs they hope will fill in the gaps while they search for permanent employment.
Not every freelancer is looking for fill-in-the-gap work; some freelancers are finding their new work quite lucrative. Elance.com claims it’s freelancers have earned more than $131 million collectively (since 2005); ODesk.com reports collective earnings of nearly $48 million.
Freelancers on ODesk.com earned an average of $484 per job, with software designers earning more an average of $28.91/hour (FYI-Bloggers earn $7.91/hour). Check out ODesk.com’s nifty report on the average rates/hour freelancers earn on the site.
Elance and ODesk are only two of the many freelancer websites. There’s guru.com, sologig.com and even Craiglist. You can also find freelance jobs on regular job boards and in the form of “Requests for Proposals” listed on professional association, nonprofit, government and some company websites.
To learn more about freelancer websites and how they work, check out the related posts.