Freelance work is all the rage nowadays. With more companies prioritizing cost savings and efficiencies to weather the economic effects of COVID-19, a pool of freelance workers will provide a much-needed buffer.
As a freelance worker, how do you stand out from potential rivals rest and gain an edge?
Boost your digital profile
In the physical world, you would typically go to a scheduled interview in your best professional attire, with a neatly printed CV and portfolio on hand. That’s a great way to make an excellent first impression.
But when it comes to freelance work, interactions mostly take place in the digital sphere. Within this space, a digital profile takes the place of a physical CV and portfolio — and professional attire as well. Thus, it becomes crucial to make a good impression through this medium, whether it’s through a personal website, LinkedIn profile, or a freelance work platform.
Aside from uploading a professional photo, write a concise summary of your expertise and significant accomplishments. This helps potential employers see right away the value in hiring your services.
Next, provide a sufficient amount of information on past freelance projects. This will be useful for employers who are already interested in you and want to know more about your work before an interview.
Strengthen your communication skills
While communication skills are essential for any worker, they become increasingly important in freelance work or any job that enables you to work from home.
Knowing how to interact with clients and collaborators helps you clarify project specifics early-on and address issues that can surface.
Aside from having good command over the English language, you should also master other more nuanced communication skills. For instance, after a meeting or project brief discussion, you can verbally recap or send follow-up notes on specific next steps.
Listening will also prove to be invaluable. It can help you hone in on critical conversational cues and information that can add value to your service.
Find opportunities to be proactive
People love working with freelancers who take the initiative. This self-starter mindset shows employers that you’re invested in the project — as opposed to just passively waiting for instructions to come along.
There are many ways to integrate proactiveness in your freelance work.
When reviewing a contract, instead of just saying everything looks okay and waiting for them to ask you to input your signature, send your affirming message with an attached signed copy.
In defining the project scope, outline potential issues that you foresee down the line and share specific mitigation steps to address them.
Be transparent about your process
When it comes to working with freelancers, employers are particularly curious about the processes of various contributors. This is one way for them to gauge how much trust they should invest in your work.
A good track record of freelance work under your belt can help with gaining that trust. But you can take it up a notch, by clearly laying out your overall strategy and specific processes to get the job done.
Employers — even collaborators — will appreciate this gesture and are more likely to consider you for a particular job.