The Truth About Many Freelance Job Postings

Wouldn’t it be fantastic if everything in the freelancing universe was rife with honesty? For every worthwhile opportunity, there are a couple more that seem questionable at best. The successful freelancer is the discerning freelancer, so cut through the confusion by being aware of some typical freelance job posting pitfalls.

Avoiding ambiguity…

I think we can all agree that whether it’s in work, or life in general, things are sometimes not what they seem. The thing is, there are still too many would-be hiring companies/individuals who use ambiguity as a tool in their job posts. Possible reasons include:

  • A fear of having their business model compromised, so they reserve details for only the most qualified applicants.
  • It’s meant to direct traffic to their website = not an actual job posting.
  • They don’t actually know how to write, hence why they might be hiring freelancers in the first place!

It goes without saying, but the shorter a job post’s description is, the higher the chances of it being more devious than above-board. Ideal job postings should be, perhaps, a couple of paragraphs at most – nothing novel-length. If ideas are succinctly summarized in, for example, bulleted lists, then that’s all the better.

Misleading marketing mayhem…

Sometimes,  posts are pretty obvious in their wording – too many exclamation points does a poor job posting make. If a post spends too much time discussing the owner/website/company/anything that isn’t the actual job description, then that’s something to question, too. Other considerations:

  • The company/individual is actually in trouble, and isn’t really hiring but still wants to generate interest. If they look like they’re doing OK, maybe they’ll attract those much-needed clients.
    • Or, maybe they’ll just disappear and then reappear as a slightly altered brand that posts jobs, yet still doesn’t seem to hire much, if at all.

Losing the laziness…

Although I’ve seen a definite improvement regarding the caliber of freelancing opportunities out there, the ever-present slovenly approach remains irksome. A few examples:

  • Perhaps the most prevalent one has to be the “include your rates for ___ words.” This is obviously an easy way to figure out who to hire for the lowest amount of money possible.
    • I did, however, come across a post that was somewhat more refreshing. Although the rates requirement was still there, the poster mentioned that if it was anything above a certain amount of cents per word, then no need to apply.
  • Also prevalent? Those “include ___ ideas for project/blog/article titles as part of your application – we want to see how creative you are.” Ever notice how, more often than not, you never hear back, no matter how great those titles you sent were? What a despicable way for companies/individuals to generate content ideas. Even if there’s a chance that the intentions are honorable, it’s a naïve way to go about vetting applicants.
    • It’s sort of ironic if these people went through the trouble to write a misleading post, when all they had to do was use something like the Title Generator by Tweak Your Biz.

No one’s ever gotten anywhere in any sort of meaningful way without having to first experience hard work. Except, some of these job posters don’t seem to have gotten the memo.

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