I don't think it was either of you... But, thanks for responding!
I am moving soon and will be looking for part time work when we move.
Before having ds I worked in sales / marketing and also speak 2 european languages.
I posted originally with a question about how easy it would be to find part time work because everything I see advertised is full time.
Someone replied that they did freelance work and at the time I thought, oh that would be really difficult to do & didn't think much more of it.
Anyway since then someone contacted me who I used to work with and offered me some freelance work, just a few hours, but it was so well paid, I couldn't refuse it. It was mainly market research and some translation (although my language skills are not really good enough to offer proper translation service). I also enjoyed doing it and thought, well maybe I could do this after all.
So what I really wanted to know was, if you do this type of thing..
1) what type of of work do you do
2) what was your background / experience prior to working freelance
3) How easy / difficult was it to get started and how did you go about it
4) what sort of rate do you charge
I appreciate if you don;t want to answer in too much detail, or be specific about the £ side of it, but any further info would be really useful to me.
1) I do freelance copywriting/PR
2) background: I was a writer in advertising agencies then PR, ending up as a PR Director in a consultancy
3)It was dead easy to get started: I did it well before becoming pg, after several ex-colleagues/contacts had said they would give me work if I went freelance. I just left my job, got an accountant and became self employed (I'm a sole trader, not a ltd. co, and the paperwork is simplicity itself.) Since having kids I've been doing it part time, and I work from home.
4) What you charge depends on what you do. there should be well-documented market rates for market research and translation if you get in touch with their relevant trade bodies. I charge by the day or hour but translators in my experience tend to charge by the word.
What did you do in sales and marketing? If it was writing or account handling it would be quite easy to set up as a freelance, that's my background so can't really advise on any other disciplines. However if you can get into marketing consultancy you could base your charges on a regular monthly retainer/fee, which is great in terms of consistency of income.
If you're serious about going freelance I would tap up all the contacts you know and ask for recommendations, put together a short mailshot letter and test the water. If you can get ex-clients or colleagues to write you an open testimonial it will always help. Start up costs are minimal but if you can provide letters of intention to use you from potential clients you'd probably have no trouble getting a business loan if you needed one.
It is bloody difficult to find part time work - I have been looking half heartedly because I would like more regularity of income (mainly because my DH is also freelance) but there's nothing. I apply for full time jobs then if I get an interview I ask them if they'd consider flexible working. Mostly the answer is no! But if I get some more long term contracts (which thankfully is looking more likely) there's no way I'd go back to working for someone else. You pay loads less tax as a self-employed person as well.
Meant to add that from a marketing POV being able to speak another language is incredibly useful. Lots of products/services are marketed across borders and being able to liaise with client contacts in other countries could be a real benefit. I understand that to be a proper translator you can only translate into your mother tongue but there are many other outlets for your lingusitic skills, Vic.
Ooh I'd love to be able to parlo Italiano proper like. I did it at night school, German too, and have A level french and O level spanish but all are as rusty as an old iron bar. I can ask callers if they speak English in 4 languages but that's about it!
Vicdubya - I think it was me - I'd been working freelance in marketing since the beginning of the year but my main client has now employed me.
1) I put together a report for an arts organisation outlining their current position and making recommendations. They've now employed me as their marketing and sales manager to oversee the implementation of those recommendations.
2) My previous background was in sales and marketing for an art poster co, then marketing and project management for a govt funded heritage website.
3) My old boss is on their trustee board and recommended me. The other few bits I've picked up have been offerd to me unsolicited through old friends and work colleagues.
4) Freelance, I charged a fee based on 20 days work at £150 per day,half up front half on delivery of the report, I'm doing 4 days a month now for about half of that.
I do same as wordsmith and pretty much same background (PR agency etc). I got work through old contacts and now am lucky enough to have a few retained clients. I charge anywhere between £220 and £300 a day.
There is a good agency in London called Stopgap that place marketing people on freelance marketing contracts and also an agency specifically for PR bods call Xchange team (based mainly London but all over)