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How does a person from the US compete on oDesk?

Rare to find a job that pays half minimum wage.

Vote Result

++++++----
Score: 6.1, Votes: 7
Be good at something.

Be good at something.

Why did I not think of that.

Why did I not think of that.

You need to take some skill

You need to take some skill tests at least.

Exhibit your skill through a good portfolio

Hi William
what are you? Copy writer? Graphic Designer? If you are a graphic designer I can give you some tips.

Do clients only hire low paid contractors?

Odesk is a worldwide hiring company. Clients understand that payments in Eastern countries are e.g. a lot lower than for USA or Europe. When the client needs someone for a job about everybody can do, it is logical to look at the low bids and it is true that the Eastern countries have the advantage there. So indeed the key is to make yourself special or a specialist on this market.

Our company has been hiring quite some people in one year's time, but it is far from the truth to state that we have only hired in 'low bid countries.' On the contrary, most of our contractors were either from the USA or Europe, because of the specialized knowledge we required and they were paid accordingly.

Our impression is that it is time contractors should stop moaning about having to accept less than they would think they should get. Odesk is a MARKET where pricing takes place according to the principle of question and demand. If you never get the job because of your pricing your bids are obviously too high and the advice is to come of the high mountain and compete.

We would like to give an example of how you might do it and get paid well for the job in the end:
we put out a request for a German translator and got about 50 reactions. We started to sift through the reactions but we were not satisfied. Most people tended to overbid to twice or thrice the amount we were willing to pay. A few days later we received a bid from somebody that was well within the scope of our ideas and he got the job. Now he is translating the seventh book for us. Because he translated so well and fast we gave him a bonus for the first book and every time he did another the payment went up: he was doing so well we thought it was worth paying up.
It is true that this man might never have been our choice if he had not been quite persistent about the first bid and because he wanted to accept lower payment than the job might have warranted.

Maybe a good advice for people who are looking for jobs on Odesk: don't have a short time vision and come off your high horse. It's better to have some 5 star indications for jobs that paid slightly less than you may have wished than have nothing at all.

WOW

Quote:
Our impression is that it is time contractors should stop moaning about having to accept less than they would think they should get. Odesk is a MARKET where pricing takes place according to the principle of question and demand. If you never get the job because of your pricing your bids are obviously too high and the advice is to come of the high mountain and compete.

Really? What ever happened to the idea that a freelancer sets their own rates based on how they value their work? (by the way it's oDesk NOT Odesk).

It IS a marketplace and there is PLENTY of demand for contractors who value their time and work.

Quote:
Maybe a good advice for people who are looking for jobs on Odesk: don't have a short time vision and come off your high horse. It's better to have some 5 star indications for jobs that paid slightly less than you may have wished than have nothing at all.

Better advise is for clients to value what they are asking people to do and wake up and pay a reasonable amount of pay if they want high quality work. You have a lot of gall talking about high horses, you're on the highest horse of all and I think you're thinking is wrong-headed. I wouldn't accept a lower rate just to get feedback because frankly, most of us have had jobs outside of freelancing and we have provable experience.

The problem with accepting "slightly less" is then clients want you to accept that 'slightly less' rate for longer term which is self-defeating.

I understand that you are running a business and need to make a profit but let's keep in mind that freelancers are also running a business and have to be aware of their bottom line also. If you don't want to pay what a freelancer feels they are worth then be my guest and hire a lower rate provider who can work for peanuts but don't expect those of us who consider ourselves professionals to lower our rates to suit your needs.

Your "high horse" is my "sound time-management"

Constance V. wrote:

We would like to give an example of how you might do it and get paid well for the job in the end:
we put out a request for a German translator and got about 50 reactions. We started to sift through the reactions but we were not satisfied. Most people tended to overbid to twice or thrice the amount we were willing to pay. A few days later we received a bid from somebody that was well within the scope of our ideas and he got the job. Now he is translating the seventh book for us. Because he translated so well and fast we gave him a bonus for the first book and every time he did another the payment went up: he was doing so well we thought it was worth paying up.
It is true that this man might never have been our choice if he had not been quite persistent about the first bid and because he wanted to accept lower payment than the job might have warranted.

If that works for you - Great. Having said that - I have made quite a bit of money taking on projects that were translated into German "on the cheap" and then turned out to be of unacceptable quality. So those clients paid twice: Once for the cheap translator, and then for a "real one" to tidy up the mess.

There are a lot of "German Translators" on oDesk - and when I take a look at the portfolio of the cheaper ones I usually find text that makes my toes curl and my eyes bleed because it's so badly translated. People get away with that kind of cr*p because the clients often don't have any grasp of the language they are having their texts translated into so they accept the word-salad they are served and are none the wiser.

The reason why the good, experienced, competent and reliable translators charge more is because *they can* - they have enough work at a reasonable rate to not have to take on cheap projects.

The only way you can get a really good translator (in the more expensive languages)on the cheap is to catch them when they are starting out and need to prove themselves. Just getting a native speaker simply isn't enough - translation is so much more complex than just chucking a text from one language into another any which old way....

When I apply for a project (and I very rarely do as I have more than enough work to keep me busy) then I apply at a rate that would make it worth my while to do the project. You'd call it "being on my high horse" - maybe - but I'd be plain stupid to take on work for $ 10.00 an hour when that would take available hours away from my schedule that could be spent earning $ 15.00 or $ 20.00 per hour.... It just simply would not make any sense at all!

My rate is $30 an hour, and I

My rate is $30 an hour, and I get plenty of work. You can check my profile. Odesk is not my only source of income, but you can see I'm making at least enough for a very decent part time job off of odesk alone.

I would go on and on about my bidding strategies and so on, but I think it's pointless. There's no point in giving advice to people who are constantly seeking proof that nothing can work. Nothing personal man but this exact same thread is posted here literally every week by somebody new, it does get old.

It's the same everywhere you go online these days. People wanting to think the system is rigged, that they have no shot, that some "other" is keeping success away from them. This is pretty much all I ever hear online, whether it comes to working, relationships, fitness, or whatever. People just don't stick to anything. I'm not going to pretend I have the answer... Maybe our culture is just too decadent.

But you're kidding yourself if you think it's impossible for someone talented and motivated to make decent money here. If you don't think you can hack it, admit you can't hack it. Don`t delude yourself into thinking it wasn`t possible.

Holy crap, Andrew. Amazing

Holy crap, Andrew. Amazing time management skills. How are you juggling 17 jobs at once!?

Well, I surely don't make as

Well, I surely don't make as much as Andrew in terms of hourly rates, but given my area of expertise I charge a decent rate. I've been on oDesk for almost 2 years now and always had full time contracts plus other small projects on the side allowing me to earn a decent living and that while I'm located in a western European country. So I absolutely agree with Andrew, there are enough well paying projects for US or European contractors. If you can't land any perhaps it's better to start asking yourself what do you need to change so that you can become successful.

"It is better to light one candle than curse the darkness"

Spin?

This is funny because this is exactly the purpose of my post and you've done nothing more than state what I'm trying to do. Excellent spin quality Thanks!!!

William, My post was not

William,

My post was not meant to make things even more difficult for you, my intention was to prove that it is possible to earn a decent wage here. I didn't go as far as to give you advice because everyone's strategy is different and it varies based on the skill set that one advertises. Personally, my cover letters are always to the point, short to keep the client's attention, I give them the availability for a Skype call because I strongly believe that having an actual conversation helps both parties understand if the collaboration can work out or not. I also give them the availability to undergo a test (paid, of course) since I usually apply for long term contracts, I want the client to see that I can be a good fit on an ongoing basis. I hope this helps!

"It is better to light one candle than curse the darkness"

Reading comprehension for the win!

Andrew Button wrote:
My rate is $30 an hour, and I get plenty of work. You can check my profile. Odesk is not my only source of income, but you can see I'm making at least enough for a very decent part time job off of odesk alone.

I would go on and on about my bidding strategies and so on, but I think it's pointless. There's no point in giving advice to people who are constantly seeking proof that nothing can work. Nothing personal man but this exact same thread is posted here literally every week by somebody new, it does get old.

It's the same everywhere you go online these days. People wanting to think the system is rigged, that they have no shot, that some "other" is keeping success away from them. This is pretty much all I ever hear online, whether it comes to working, relationships, fitness, or whatever. People just don't stick to anything. I'm not going to pretend I have the answer... Maybe our culture is just too decadent.

Seems your cynicism got the best of your reading comprehension. I specifically asked how to compete and at no time was I "moaning" however, it does sound like you are moaning about moaners which is self defeating in itself.. I do appreciate the response though.

Andrew Button wrote:

But you're kidding yourself if you think it's impossible for someone talented and motivated to make decent money here. If you don't think you can hack it, admit you can't hack it. Don`t delude yourself into thinking it wasn`t possible.

Huh? Oh...this is you taking something I wrote in putting into a completely different context.

To be frank

You have to have a strategy. Honestly, I took some crap jobs on here, got ripped off and my work stolen. I've done it all. But, I also taken some jobs that maybe weren't exactly what I should be paid and it paid off too.

You have to build your clientele. You can charge what you want per hour but if you don't have the experience to back it up you're not going to get hired. Be reasonable and realize you'll get paid less at first. I'm not saying you should work for pennies but $30 an hour off the bat isn't going to fly for most people.

Be patient, put in your dues and get a clientele built up. Freelance work is hard. You have to really want to do it and be willing to devote the time and energy to building a reputation.

Yeah there are people who charge 5 cents an hour but the client gets ripped off and hopefully they learn their lesson for the next time. Be picky, be consistent and be persistent.

Honestly you'll have to use up all your app quotas for the first few weeks because there are so many people on here. Just show that you have something to offer and you'll start getting jobs.

Skip the cheap stuff

For six months now I've skipped 99% of the postings yet still have been able to earn about $5,000.00 @ $25.00 per hour (200 hours). I think the key lies in the way your Profile looks and reads. Mine isn't perfect, but you might want to look at it . . .

thanks

Peter Kelton wrote:
For six months now I've skipped 99% of the postings yet still have been able to earn about $5,000.00 @ $25.00 per hour (200 hours). I think the key lies in the way your Profile looks and reads. Mine isn't perfect, but you might want to look at it . . .

Angela Brown wrote:
You have to have a strategy. Honestly, I took some crap jobs on here, got ripped off and my work stolen. I've done it all. But, I also taken some jobs that maybe weren't exactly what I should be paid and it paid off too.

You have to build your clientele. You can charge what you want per hour but if you don't have the experience to back it up you're not going to get hired. Be reasonable and realize you'll get paid less at first. I'm not saying you should work for pennies but $30 an hour off the bat isn't going to fly for most people.

Be patient, put in your dues and get a clientele built up. Freelance work is hard. You have to really want to do it and be willing to devote the time and energy to building a reputation.

Yeah there are people who charge 5 cents an hour but the client gets ripped off and hopefully they learn their lesson for the next time. Be picky, be consistent and be persistent.

Honestly you'll have to use up all your app quotas for the first few weeks because there are so many people on here. Just show that you have something to offer and you'll start getting jobs.

Thanks for these, seriously. Obviously diligence is required and it is reassuring to know there are decent jobs for people who can produce quality work. I've started with jobs with low pay, not insane but still below minimum wage and I hope it leads to better pay in the future.

Hm. It should be much easier

Hm. It should be much easier for English native speaker to find a job than it is for me.

You can proofread texts, write stories, narrate, ...

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