Ready or Not #232: Second Job

I would like a second job.  I love my first job, but I find that I need just a little bit (actually a lot) more money each month than what I bring home from my main job.  I don’t want to go out and get a conventional second job because my life is a little unconventional and having somebody else’s set schedule just wouldn’t work for me.

I decided that the perfect second job for me would be to work from my home with a schedule of my choosing.  Of course I realize that there would be deadlines and I would have to make a workable schedule that I could stick to, but having the option to work out of my home would mean that I could choose to work on projects at 2:00 a.m. if I wanted to. (Of course that was hypothetical because I can’t physically stay awake past 9:30 p.m. Oh to be young again. Sigh.)

I have computer skills.  I have Excel and Microsoft Word skills and I create wonderfully creative color-coded spreadsheets with formulas. (I love formulas – I get so excited when I’m building a spreadsheet!) I’m very organized, but how do I find an employer who could use my skills – and let me work out of my home, on my own time.

Really, how do you find those fairy tale jobs?

I was talking to my daughter and I told her of my quandary and how I was looking for this mythical simple bookkeeping job or a data entry or transcriptionist job where I could work from home. She said that she would keep her ears open for me.  A couple of days later she called and said that she had a possible option for my second job search.

She had been talking to a friend of hers that was working as a contractor (employee without benefits) part-time, on-line.  She said that with the company that she was contracting through had you bid on jobs. Some jobs were permanent, some semi-permanent, and others were one time only projects.  She had bid on a bunch of jobs and had even been awarded the contract on a couple of them.  That sounded like a good option and so I checked it out.

While investigating this new form of employment, I came across a couple of companies that looked somewhat promising – oDesk.com and Elance.com.  I am sure that there are more options out there, but I stopped at these two.  You can Google, “outsource to freelance on-line contractors” for more options.

I’m not suggesting one option over another because I simply don’t know which company is the most reliable or best to work for. After all I’m just starting to look into these businesses myself.

One thing that I did notice was that there were a lot of different types of jobs that are listed – including voice work.  Who would have guessed?

Many new jobs are listed on a daily basis.  The jobs are posted by employers from all over the world and people who have language skills are in high demand, especially for translation purposes.  Of course the potential workforce is also from all over the world.  When bidding for jobs you are often bidding against individuals from a part of the world that may not need as much money per hour as we are used to.

Bidding against individuals that live in an area that has a lower cost-of-living rate is something that you will have to consider when looking for jobs through these on-line companies.  Where you may work at a job in the United States for $15.00 or $20.00 an hour, someone living elsewhere in the world may be willing to do the same type of work for only $2.00 to $4.00 an hour.  When deciding what to bid on you will have to consider that you don’t need to dress up, commute or eat out and so you can settle for a smaller rate per hour.  You will have to decide how much you think you are worth when you are sitting at home doing nothing – and needing a bit more pocket change.

Those who have various incredible abilities with computer programming or other highly technical skills can ask for more money. Go figure.

The way that I look at it is that if you don’t have a job, this might be a wonderful stop-gap to help out until you get a permanent position. (Maybe you will find the right job on-line.) Or, if you can figure the system out, you might be able to find the few extra dollars more that you need each month – while working on your schedule – in your pj’s.

I don’t know how this is going to work out for me, but I just thought that I would share this information to give you options – if you need them.

And good luck.

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