Been looking and looking, applying and applying but you’re still not hired?
It took me 2 months before I landed my first work at home job.
It’s really not a walk in the park when you don’t have any freelance job experience yet.
Honestly, there’s no magic formula for it.
But here are 3 things you can do to hasten the pace to getting employed as a freelancer. Like most people would say, ASAP.
1. Beautify your profile
Your profile can be your oDesk, Elance, your own Facebook, Google Plus or LinkedIn page or your own blog. As long as you use these tools to show your virtual resume then this is what I mean about your profile. You can have only 1 or more. How many you’d like to have to show potential clients is up to you.
a. Make sure that your profile shows clearly what you offer. For example, in oDesk, Elance and similar job bidding sites, you need to put a heading or title for yourself. This helps potential clients to easily identify your skills set and see initially if you have the knowledge they need for the job or project.
b. Include all relevant education, work experience and skills. Be truthful with these information. You would not want to brag you can type 300 words per minute when in fact you can only do 30. Remember, some clients would test you before finalizing your agreement.
c. Be reasonable with the rate you set. Now it’s not that easy to determine your freelance rate. Some newbies in the freelance industry would set really high rates especially when their work experience is extensive. This is understandable but potential clients are generally turned off with high rates when you don’t have any freelance job experience to show. I discussed how you can set a reasonable rate in the post: Work At Home Tips: Questions To Ask In Setting Your Rates. It can give you a realistic asking rate in your profile.
d. Take the tests provided by job bidding sites, Brainbench and the like then post this on your online profile/s especially when you get high scores. This will show how good you are in particular skills.
e. Show your contact info. If you are using your own site, blog or social media accounts, make sure employers can easily get in touch with you. You wouldn’t want them to lose interest just because they can’t find your email address.
f. Be professional. In all kinds of jobs and job application, professionalism is crucial. Make sure to show this in your profile picture and the words you use to describe yourself, education and skills. Actually, with the extent that the internet is reaching today, any online profile you have, personal or for work, should show your professionalism. You never know when a client may want to check out your Facebook profile to “investigate” if you are who you say you are.
2. Personalize your cover letter
The first thing a client will read from your application is your cover letter. Like your profile, keep it professional.
BUT…yes, that’s a big but…customize the letter to address the job post and make it conversational, just enough to grab and hold the client’s attention.
In my post: 5 Sure-Fire Ways To Write Effective Work At Home Job Cover Letters, I gave some tips you can use in customizing your cover letter to suit each job post you respond to.
Remember, you can use templates, but those templates can only go so far. Customizing a cover letter means showing you paid attention to the job post, you understand what is being asked, and you know what skills you have or can learn that makes you the best candidate for the job.
3. Be patient, determined and persevering
Like I’ve pointed out in previous posts, getting work at home jobs is just like applying for other regular jobs.
In oDesk, I’ve noticed, most freelancers would really have a period of 1 to 4 months before they get hired.
Those who were persistent in applying for jobs were mostly the ones who eventually got hired in 1, 2 or much more gigs. And often, once you land that first work at home job, other job offers just come knocking in, even without sending out applications.
So while applying for work at home jobs, make it your job to search listings and send out applications every day.
That’s what I did. And when I go back, it’s like having 2 jobs at a time. I have my regular office job and considered applying for freelance jobs, a part-time gig. I allotted at least 2 hours per day just to find a work at home job.
It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t sweet. There were a lot of rejections. But it’s all about your attitude and motivation.
Always think about why you are doing it or who are you doing it for?
Then you can keep your determination in finding that work at home job you so want.
Have you found your work at home job yet? If not, what are your plans so you can get hired ASAP? Feel free to share them in the comments.