For a lot of people, working from home is a dream – you get to work on your own time, and in an environment, you’re comfortable with, and nobody’s going to judge your Hello Kitty PJ bottoms you have on. For parents, working from home lets, you spend time with your kids while making ends meet at the same time. It is, unfortunately rather difficult to find work from home opportunities in Singapore, but increasingly more Singaporeans are choosing to try their hand at freelancing online.

Introduction to Online Freelancing

The trend towards online freelancing began in the early 2000’s, with a string of websites popping up that promised to help freelancers earn more money while allowing businesses to save money through outsourcing, both points are still valid today.

On these online websites which we will discuss later, you can work with others on a more traditional project basis or a per hour basis. Projects are posted online by hirers and bid on by freelancers.

Employers will then make an assessment based on your cost, experience, cover letter, work history, portfolio and reviews will decide if they want to interview you. If the interview goes well, you’ll be hired. Payment is entirely electronic, and the most convenient method is definitely through Paypal, so make sure you sign up for an account. You should note that most online freelancing platforms do take a commission based on the income you earn which is normally around 10%.

Things to take note of

  1. You’re competing against a global workforce, so expect freelancers from countries with lower incomes to undercut your price
  2. Starting up as a freelancer can be difficult but gets easier over time as you get more reviews from hirers
  3. If the working relationship between you and your hirer should degenerate, you could end up in a dispute which is typically mediated by the administrators of these platforms. Should they rule against you, you may end up not paid for a project
  4. There are many projects to be found online, but the bulk of them are related to IT or graphic design.

So with that in mind, here’s a list of the best freelancing websites where you can start earning money today!

Freelancer.com

Not the oldest, but one of if not the biggest freelancing platform available. Their website is intuitive and easy to use, so most beginners will find it quite user-friendly, you can even register by logging in with Facebook. Here you can bid on projects that are paid on a project or per hour basis, as well as take part in contests.

Contests are posted by hirers, who then pick the best entry which is awarded a prize, beware of contests without guaranteed prizes, though. If prizes aren’t guaranteed, the hirer may choose not to select any of the entries and retain the prize money.

Work From Home -Freelancing Online

Editor’s Note: Odesk and Elance have merged into one platform – Upwork. 

Elance.com

Probably the oldest freelancing website, it was once so synonymous with freelancing that it coined the term E-Lancing – freelancing through the internet. Elance has a lower service fee of 8.75% as well as a dedicated following of hirers who use it exclusively. Again an easy interface to start up, with a fair amount of jobs posted daily. The Basic plan allows you to apply for up to 40 jobs a month for free.
Work From Home -Freelancing Online

Odesk.com

One of the newer websites, most of the freelancers who work through the site work on a per hour basis, though they do offer project work on a fixed sum as well. The service fee here is 10% on anything you earn, but the secret sauce of Odesk.com is its desktop app that helps track freelancer productivity and working hours. You can download the client on your PC and many employers do require that you do.

The application allows you to log the time that you work while measuring your productivity based on the number of clicks and keyboard strokes you make during the work period. Rather nefariously, though, the app also snaps screenshots at random intervals while you’re working, so employers know you’re not playing Farmville.

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Hubstaff Talent

Hubstaff Talent is a free directory for the world’s top freelancers and is quickly growing in popularity each day. Hubstaff Talent sets itself apart from other freelance marketplaces by being completely free, with no markups and no fees for both the freelancer or business owner.

Work From Home -Freelancing Online

Hubstaff Talent has two primary objectives,

  1. To help business find great freelancers.
    Hubstaff Talent has top quality freelancers creating profiles every single day. They understand the impohttp://thenewsavvy.com/career/entrepreneurs/starting-a-business-in-singapore/rtance of finding and retaining talented creatives, one of the main ways to do this is by keeping their services free.
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  2. To help remote agencies show their services to the world.
    Hubstaff has thousands of clients that use their time to track services on a daily basis, many of which have service-based businesses and are amazing at what they do. Hubstaff Talent was designed as a free way to help them find more clients.

The platform is easy to use for both business owners and freelancers. Business owners can quickly search for and scale a remote team for their business; they can search thousands of contractors based on skill, location or category and contact the team member they feel will be a good fit directly.

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).