How to Rule the Online Job Boards

by A Guest Author

Thanks to the sharp rise in job sites offering online work it is possible now to get work contracts in just about every field of employment. For contractors, freelancers and other home-based workers there are now hundreds of sites such as Odesk and Elance that list thousands of contracts from around the world for short, medium and long-term work in every imaginable niche. Take a brief look at Elance, for example, and you will see categories ranging from programming to legal, design to copywriting, finance to translation and engineering. Flick through the services to hire and you’ll see everyone from web designers to physicists civil engineers to paralegal secretaries. However, it is worth bearing one thing in mind at the same time. Just as there has been a massive rise in the availability of work online, so has there also been a massive rise in the amount of contractors and freelancers chasing all of those new jobs. With that being the case, how can you make sure that you are the person winning all those jobs and not someone else? This article will point you in the right direction:

The very first thing to ensure is that you set yourself up with a decent profile on the site. This profile needs to be immaculately laid-out, beautifully presented and most important of all, well-written. It also needs to feature a portfolio of the best work you have ever done. This portfolio should include both your best work as well as a selection of work that shows a wide variety of your skills to prospective clients. Additionally, you should also detail all of your qualifications and industry awards as well as your own mission statement as to how you work and how you would handle any projects you might be awarded. Always keep in mind when writing this stuff that this will be the main point of contact with potential clients. It is essential to get this profile absolutely perfect.

Once that is done, you then need to work on establishing your reputation on the site. Just about every online job board operates on a system similar to that used on Ebay. That means that every contract you complete will receive feedback from the client you were working for. That feedback goes on your profile and becomes, in effect, your means of attracting the next client. This is crucial – you will only ever be as in-demand as your last review. Get a terrible review or a couple of average feedback reports and clients will look elsewhere. This is why with online contracts you can never hand in average work. Every job you do leads to feedback and bad feedback leads to no jobs. It also means when you are starting out you may have to lower your rates significantly. Most people will not hire you without any feedback. And you can’t build feedback until you’ve been hired. The only way you can beat this and get a job when bidding against people with good feedback (whilst you have none) is to bid really low and hope someone takes a chance on you. Do an amazing job for this first client, get yourself some feedback and you will quickly be all set.

Lastly, work out exactly how you want to go about bidding for jobs. Some people prefer to bid first and get their bid at the top of the pile. You can do this if you have a set amount you are willing to take for a job and no less. The advantage is that you will be the first person in the client’s mind. Others however, prefer to wait a while and see how much others are bidding. Then they can come in and set their price about half way between the highest and lowest bids. How you bid will depend on you, but spend your first few jobs working out a strategy that suits you.

About The Author:

Esther is a financial blogger. She writes about everything from small business advice to financial software and from taxes to mortgages. She also writes a blog for

This post was written by A Guest Author

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