View Full Version : How does freelance work?

11-12-2009, 04:48 AM
I am a graduating student here in the Philippines...

I am planning to accept projects and do some web based applications for small companies...

i have read the other thread with regards to the pricing of the project... but how does the flow of freelance work?

1. client meeting( this involves data gathering about the company and know their current process to know how the system will more or less work?
2. present a prototype of the project based on the interviews..
3. do the changes that the client would want to change
4. present the final output
5. maintenance

so in what part does the payment actually go?
and what if the client requires something that i cannot actually do? will i reject it? or outsource it?

11-12-2009, 05:42 AM
The flow you've outlined isn't bad as a general idea. Unfortunately, that's really all anyone could give you. Each project is different, and each client is different. Some will have a good idea of what they want/need, others maybe not so much.

Depending on a number of factors, including the scope of the project and the 'involvement' (possibly micro-management tendencies) of the customer, rather than presenting one prototype, it may be desirable to break that into smaller pieces.

When payment is due, is definitely something you want to get in writing early on in the project. Again, this depends primarily on the scope of the project. For any sizable project, I insist on a down payment and quite possibly periodic payments - usually based on some milestones. Of course, for smaller projects, the periodic payments may not be reasonable.

This is assuming a qualified, confident professional with a track record. I'm not trying to suggest that you don't know what you're doing. Early on in your freelancing career, you may have to compromise. If you can show a portfolio or have some satisfied clients, and can present yourself confidently and professionally, you will be taken more seriously and your negotiating position will be better.

As far as outsourcing part of the work: while this *can* be a good idea, you have to keep in mind that ultimately, in your client's eye, you are responsible for the project. Sometimes, depending on what is being asked, you may be able to reject just that portion of the job. In cases where that is not possible or desirable, be very careful to whom you outsource parts of jobs. If you can't find a sub-contractor (outsource) with which you are comfortable and you come across a requirement which you cannot provide, it's better to explain so than to accept the job and fail. The key is to finding a way of explaining that the requirement is outside your experience or resources or whatever, but still remain professional in what you can provide. You may not get the job, but a reasonable client will respect you - and that can lead to referrals or future jobs.

Good luck. It's hard work, but for the right person, working for yourself is far better than working for someone else.

11-12-2009, 08:00 AM
with regards to outsourcing... i am just particular with not knowing how to program it. for example a client would want something "extraordinary" in the project and unfortunately i don't know how to code it. I would have to research however time is running when i research.

can i say to the client that i am not capable of programming that part of the system and just offer alternative ways that wold result into the same flow?

11-12-2009, 04:42 PM
can i say to the client that i am not capable of programming that part of the system and just offer alternative ways that wold result into the same flow?
Possibly. But again, that depends alot on the situation and how you handle refusing the work. Some clients will be open to such suggestions, others won't Also, if you come off sounding like you don't know what you're doing, the client will pick up on that and most likely go elsewhere. Unfortunately, it will probably take a little experience to be able to refuse part of a job professionally.

11-13-2009, 02:15 AM
oh thanks! thank you!

11-13-2009, 02:34 AM
you're welcome. good luck

it career
11-13-2009, 07:44 AM
No freelancing is not that hard , you can register at freelance website like http://getafreelancer.com/ (http://getafreelnacer.com/) ,etc and start bidding for all projects posted there .

11-13-2009, 04:36 PM
I guess that depends on what you want to do.

True, bidding on low paying jobs on the various freelancing sites is not hard. But, building and growing a successful, sustainable business is a lot of hard work.

11-15-2009, 12:58 AM
do i need to show the screenshots of the system before they actually pay the down payment?

11-15-2009, 02:44 AM
I wouldn't, but there's probably those who would.

To me, a down payment is just that - a payment before any real work gets done. At that point, you'd already have the system designed, at least enough to know how much work is involved. I'd be prepared to explain, in layman's terms, how the application will work, and to be able to answer questions. And, of course, I'd already have the job outlined in writing (ready for signature's).

That said, there are those jobs where the client may want several concepts to choose from during the bidding process. In which case, I'd only give them "wireframe" mockups. Of course, this would come before the down payment stage, even before you have the job.

11-16-2009, 03:08 AM
I am just afraid if during the data gathering part i wold already ask for the down payment and when i present them the initial stages of the system they wouldn't like it...

so what i was thinking atleast when i have already showed them some of the screenshots i am sure that they are atleast satisfied with the flow and design and so all i need to do is program them and make it functional

11-16-2009, 05:03 AM
There's certainly nothing wrong with your approach beyond the risk of doing some work for nothing, and that does happen.

Ultimately you have to be comfortable presenting yourself and your services. There's no step-by-step plan to making your freelancing business a success. In fact, whatever approach you take, you will end up modifying as time goes by - you'll find things that work better for you than others, etc. Never stop evaluating your interactions with your clients - there's always room for improvement.

11-16-2009, 05:56 AM
thanks really for all the replies... within a month or 2 i will be uploading my own website at the same time some projects that i will make for presentations!

11-16-2009, 06:16 AM
You're welcome. Best of luck!