DESPITE stiff competition of talents, a freelance marketing leader said anybody who is adept in new technologies and self-motivated to improve their skills can become competitive freelancers today.

Julmar Grace Locsin, Surge Marketplace chief executive officer (CEO), said during the SunStar Davao’s Talking Heads on January 20, 2023 that with the right amount of skills and motivation, anybody can be an effective freelancer amid a growing pool of talents.

She also said that whether you are a fresh graduate or a mother, working freelance only needs at least one skill to start.

Locsin said the most marketable freelance skills in the market today are data analytics, web development, web design, software industry, social media management, e-commerce, real estate, video editing, and financial-based operations like bookkeeping and accounting.

“Preparation is really key (when entering freelance), without you preparing and upskilling, putting quality-based, technology-based or relevant skills that you can serve the clients, you’ll not be very competitive, you have to always prepare yourself with the right skill,” Locsin said.

She added that most of these in-demand types of freelancing work are usually done face-to-face, but as business owners are transitioning into digital means of servicing their clients, they find freelancing cost-effective.

“When you freelance, you can own your time, it has more freedom and flexibility that gives you on top of just working online,” Locsin said.

“You can work anytime you want, you can choose the contracts that you want, you can choose the hourly rates that you want,” she added.

Locsin said one advantage of freelancing is the time freedom and flexibility. She also said that those who shift to freelancing are motivated to achieve financial freedom, prioritize their family, and escaping the 9-to-5 workday. She also said that freelancing is a viable option to work as one can work wherever and whenever they want.

“I think this generation has redefined what success is and it’s really being able to pursue the things that we like, what we need,” Locsin said.

She added that around 1.5 million Filipinos are providing freelancing services on different online platforms overseas, according to a mobile wallet app GCash and financial services firm Payoneer’s report. Locsin estimated that there are at least 20,000 to 50,000 freelancers, maybe higher, in Davao Region.

Freelancing, also called virtual assistance (VA), is the exchange of services between you as the freelancer and a client who will give you jobs and opportunities. It can be a direct hire from online clients or agency-based hiring, where freelancers work in an agency which partners several clients.

In this structure, the clients or businesses, usually from overseas, will hire you and pay you, with all of these happening online. ICE