Introducing Freelancer.co.uk, a new TechHub Member.
Saif Bonar, UK Country Manager. The following blog post was written by Saif.
I'm a fairly new member of TechHub and wanted to take the opportunity to introduce myself to others in the community, so jumped at the chance to write this blog when invited by Elizabeth. I spent my first few hours here last week working and then at the monthly drinks. I'm looking forward to participating in the community, gaining from the experience of others, meeting new people and I'm also determined to give something back. Initially I'm offering any TechHub members in the UK free Gold membership at the Freelancer.co.uk website for 3 months. This is worth �60 and reduces commissions you pay on projects to 3% as a freelancer and zero as an employer.
Freelancer.co.uk is the British arm of the world's largest micro-outsourcing marketplace. Our goal is to be the Ebay for Jobs. We have over 2.7m users worldwide including 100,000 British freelancers and 40,000 UK businesses. We are already the biggest UK platform for outsourcing projects and we have ambitious plans for growth. Freelancers and small businesses can tap into our marketplace to either get work or to get work done. With over 400 project categories ranging from graphic design and SEO to financial and legal support TechHub members can find someone to plug any skills gaps they need on budget and on time.
We recently launched in the UK and are currently running our second marketing push, which includes 500 branded London taxis. As part of this we are also running a competition which is open to TechHub users who can win �1,000 in credit to get work done through the Freelancer platform. All you need to do to enter is grab a photo of a Freelancer Taxi and post it to our Facebook page.
A big part of my role is working on PR and securing exposure for the Freelancer brand in the UK. Given the current economic climate its been a real challenge convincing the media that Freelancer is not only about jobs going from the UK to the developing world. Another challenge has been keeping up with a fast growing global tech business. Our HQ is in Sydney and I work closely with the Comms manager in New York, so the hours can be quite manic sometimes (team meetings at midnight on a Sunday) but, it's a great experience and in only a few months in post I have already been to the Webby Awards in New York and grown the UK side of the business by almost 40%.
The space we're in throws out lots of opportunities to comment on areas such as economics, employment, technology and outsourcing. Its been quite strange going from an ad-hoc blogger to writing articles for Management Today and seeing my opinions and comments in print everyehwere from Business Computing World to The Drum. Only last week my comments on a Labour Market Report from the CIPD and KPMG found that 30% of companies and 54% of public sector organisations were published in niche websites aimed at CFOs. Sadly, the news was that 34% of UK employers are expecting to make further redundancies in 2011. While this is a blow for the UK jobs market, it's a great opportunity for those affected by redundancy to either follow their dream and turn their business idea into a reality, or to turn to Freelance and focus on doing what they do best while maintaining a more positive work-life balance.
We have big plans in the months ahead and are hoping to introduce a number of changes to the Freelancer platform which will make it much more useful for Freelancers and contract workers in the UK, who until now have struggled to compete with off-shore providers. If you are a Freelancer and haven't yet tried Freelancer.co.uk, you should and my offer of 3 months Free Gold Membership is a great way to get started.
Finally, Miguel asked me to include my best bit of advice for start-ups and entrepreneurs.... If its not core to your business, outsource it.
TechHub Members Special Offer: As an initial gesture to the TechHub community I am pleased to offer any TechHub members three months free Gold membership on Freelancer.co.uk - this dramatically reduces the fees you pay and will provide you with a good opportunity to try out our platform. (Gold members pay no fees on projects posted and just 3% on any money earned).