The primer to the world of freelance gigs in Singapore – Life hacks

So, you’ve decided to take the plunge into freelance work. What’s out there and what can you do?

thinking in progress

If this is you, we have you covered. There are numerous freelance jobs online for you to take your pick!

While there are freelance jobs available, in practically any industry out there, do note that some require years of experience and expertise that you might not have just yet but can work towards. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of freelance jobs for students or just any freelance-aspirants out there that you can explore right below! Make use of all the skills that you have, or see if you can pick some new ones up.

If you are really keen on working with a particular company but find that they are not seeking freelancers or submissions at the moment, don’t hesitate to contact them and (politely) enquire about the possibility. You’ll never know until you try! In fact, if you do a good job in your freelance work, some companies might even consider signing you on for internships or full-time employment down the road.

*Disclaimer: The rates for freelance work ranges between industries and companies. Some jobs might ask for portfolios.

  • Writers

This is one of the most well-known freelance jobs out there, but is still worth a mention! Content providers (such as lifestyle sites and magazines) are always on the lookout for freelance writing to help supplement in-house content.

If you have a flair and genuinely like to write, there’s certainly no reason not to contribute a few articles.

Over time, you can try different kinds of writing and build up a portfolio spanning various genres, like travel or entertainment writing, which will help you become more versatile in your craft. A piece typically requires you to write anywhere between 500 to 1000 words.

When reading lifestyle portals or online sites, keep a lookout for their “About”/”Careers” sections: if you don’t spot any job ads for your favourite site ever on JobsCentral and STjobs, for instance, this is where you go to see if they are seeking freelancers.

If you’re not the article sort, there are also freelance copywriting gigs available!

(psst, Digital Senior is always on the lookout for freelance contributors!)
(psst, Digital Senior is always on the lookout for freelance contributors!)
  • Editors/Proofreaders

For the doubting, proofreading/editing jobs really do exist. Sites such as Editana offer editing and proofreading services for a huge variety of documents (academic essays, business reports, CVs…), to be completed within a specified or guaranteed timeframe. Editana, for example, hires university students from top-speaking English universities around the world to help structure and make sure content flows smoothly. You might just fit the bill.

Good at navigating syntax, sentence structures, and tenses? Able to give writing a fresh spin and grab readers’ attention? Give editing a go!

Do note, however, that you will usually be required to take a written test.

  • Designers (Graphic/web/etc)

Whiz at Photoshop/Illustrator/AutoCAD/other software? Designed awesome marketing collaterals for your CCAs and schoolwork? There are companies out there looking for your talent and capabilities! Apply for freelance designer gigs through sites such as ConceptDrop, which will match you to suitable projects.

As design work is portfolio dependent, you will need to assemble one first.

  • Translators

trust google translator

If you’re fluent in your mother tongue or a third language (or a fourth, even), this could be the gig for you. Companies that offer freelance translator jobs usually do so for the purpose of localizing a particular project (game studios) or to write news/reports. Linguistic and translation students are highly sought after, or at least a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree.

Sometimes, translation is required for other jobs such as transcription, so if you don’t have the 1-2 years of minimum experience required that most translation jobs demand, don’t sweat just yet!

  • Drivers

This is the one freelance job where you get a strong taste of what it feels like to be self-employed because you will have to make a lot of executive decisions … on your own. How many hours do you drive? Is it worth it leasing a car, if your family doesn’t have one, and how long will it take to “break even” or start earning a decent profit? Do I pick this passenger up, or no? The list goes on.

You will also, from dealing with passengers, cultivate your interpersonal skills— a good thing to have not just for working life, but also for day-to-day interactions with just about everyone. If you want to stretch your independence levels and see driving as a viable option, get the necessary documents ready and hop over to private-hire companies such as Grab and Uber to sign up or enquire today!

(Kindly note that to be a driver with Uber, you have to be >21 years old and have 1-2 years of driving experience, depending on the kind of license you possess. For Grab, only Singaporeans and PRs 21 and above are eligible, with at least 2 years of driving experience.)

  • Teachers/Facilitators

Companies running workshops/discussions typically need the extra manpower on board to help them manage participants (who can be anyone from children to tourists). If you have a skill you’re strong in (art, for example) or are good with people, you’ll take to this like a duck to water. As workshops and events are seasonal or usually one-off events, keep an eagle eye out on job sites or various companies so you can apply the minute they’re posted.

One kind of facilitating you can do is trail facilitating with companies such as LDR Pte Ltd, which harness mobile technology to organise and conduct exploration trails around Singapore.

  • Testers

Quality assurance, to be specific! Before products are launched they undergo multiple rounds of testing to make sure that everything is running smoothly. Game studios are one such group that makes use of testers fairly often, so if you are considering the game industry (or just a passionate gamer) this could be your first step to an insider’s point-of-view of how games are produced. Depending on the project’s scope, you might need to know your mother tongue/a second language well, or be proficient in a certain game platform’s mechanics.

game tester

Interested? Keywords Studios, who has provided its services to clients such as EA and SEGA, often looks for freelance testers!

  • Concierge and Delivery

shopping

This is a freelance job that is open to anyone! Sign up to be a personal shopper with grocery or food delivery services such as Honestbee, and earn cash in your spare time by popping by into the grocery store to buy requested items for drop off!

Concierge shoppers are given training to make sure they provide quality services to their customers, so don’t take the job lightly. Sure, it might not sound very exciting, but you have a greater amount of flexibility to choose when you can work, and freelance during school semesters if you need the cash. It’s a win-win situation, if you ask us.

  • Photographers/Videographers

If you’re good at photography and videography, you can choose to become “self-employed” and offer up your services to the public. You are offering a product and representing yourself, however, so make sure you don’t overpromise clients/customers what you can’t deliver.

One possibility is to start out as a secondary photographer/videographer for friends’ events or shoots, for example, and work your way up in skills and confidence levels. Also look to other photographers pages and work for inspiration!

Alternatively, photo studios and production houses do put up a call for freelancers occasionally, so keep an eye out and actively look out for such opportunities–don’t let them slip you by.

As always, make sure to do careful research about any company offering the work/job before applying and accepting, so you are not taken advantage of.

We hope this starter list has been of use to you! If you find while reading through our list, that you don’t have the requisite skills just yet, don’t lose heart: if you’re willing to take up lower remuneration, freelancing is one of the best ways to practise your skills and build up a portfolio of work.

We wish you the best on your journey and don’t hesitate to drop us a comment if you have any queries!

 

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