Elance is an online platform where you can get your work done. Here things just work differently. Companies, organizations or other groups as well as individuals can get their work done here using the freelancers. These freelancers are the professionals and they get paid for their work. They use the different tools available to them to get your work done. Here, people can utilize their skills to get earning for themselves.
Elance founders were inspired by a business article which was published in 1998. The people who founded the site had realized the need to have an online virtual platform where people from different parts of the world can interact with each other and can help each other to achieve their respective goals. The site was initially started in 1999. There were upgrades and VMS system was introduced two years later. The development of the current web based platform started in 2006 after the ESD was sold by the company.
In February of this year, it was reported that Elance is handling more than five hundred thousand businesses and there are more than 2 million clients who are earning via this platform and the total earnings have estimated to about $700 million.
People who need professionals for them can post their projects and demands on the Elance site. They can then receive proposals from the freelancers who are willing to work on their projects. To evaluate whether the freelancer meets their requirements, they can check his previous work history, his skills, and the reviews of others regarding him, his portfolio and qualification as well. If the freelancer meets all the requirements, they can then use the Elance system to communicate the instructions and different files related to the work. The clients pay the freelancer via the Elance system. While he pays, a small percentage is deducted by the Elance as a commission. The clients and freelancers can get the information regarding the hourly rates from the timesheets. There is a work view tool which can be used to provide the previous records. While working on the projects, the progress towards finishing the project is indicated by the various milestones. Whenever a milestone is reached, the contractor is paid from the funds which are in the Elance system. The Elance system automatically generates the service fee when the fee is decided by the freelancer. After the job is done, the system deducts the service fee and the rest of the amount is transacted to the account of the freelancer or contractor.
Contractors or the freelancers can explore the site to find the relevant jobs and they can go through the history of various clients. Each freelancer has a profile which includes all the info regarding the previous jobs and the review of different clients. The freelancer mentions his skills in the profile and his various qualifications. This profile allows the clients to check if the freelancer has the requisite skills or not. For the registered users, Elance allows them to post 40 proposals each month without charging any fee and if they want to post proposals for other jobs as well, they need to get the membership for a fee specified by the Elance website. There is no impedance in the payment if all the project or job is done using the Elance system elements.
There are many contractors who use freelancing as the only source of making a living. According to the survey, almost half of the freelancers belong to the mentioned category and more than 65% are well educated.
There are a lot of categories for the freelancers to choose the jobs from. They can work on IT projects or they can choose the creative projects such as writing material. Then there are the marketing jobs. Graphics designing and web designing are very much in demand.