Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Applying for the Perfect oDesk Job

Back when I was still a new member of oDesk, I was worried if I was guaranteed of payment after completion of the job. Online ventures for an occupation was new to me and full of uncertainties. Flash forward to a few weeks, I finished my first contract and was paid with the amount my employer and I agreed with. Lucky for me, he was forgiving and understood my position.

Searching for another online job opportunity in oDesk made me wonder a few things: work satisfaction, rates, and personal experience. These three didn’t occur to me at first since I was so excited working as a contractor for the first time. But now, I was bothered what my work status will be in the long run.

After much pondering, I came up with my own checklist that I can use to determine whether a job posting in oDesk is worth the effort of applying and working on. Every day, fresh job offers are made available that choosing the perfect one can be difficult if done without certain measures.


Employer’s Reputation

oDesk employer ratingJust as you can use your hopefully high ratings from past work as credentials when applying, you can also review the employer’s reputation through the feedback from their previous employees.

The relationship between the boss and their workers can affect the work output and the quality of the underlying process. Obviously, working for a knowledgeable employer is better than one who is hard to deal with.

Other factors to consider are the employer’s quick response to queries, their means of communication, and cooperation, all of which are rated and found in their contractor-to-employer feedbacks.

Fixed vs Hourly

Jobs at oDesk have two types of payment: fixed-price and hourly.

oDesk hourly pay

An hourly contract requires the use of the oDesk desktop application which records screenshots and keyboard and mouse activity in order to monitor the process of the work. This is done so that the amount paid to the contractor is justified. Receiving payments and resolving disputes in hourly contracts are also certified.

oDesk fixed price

On the other hand, a fixed-price contract does away with activity monitoring. Also, oDesk cannot guarantee payment and help if the employer refuses to pay. Fixed-price, however, lets you have total flexibility, giving you the freedom to work anytime within deadline.

Reasonable Budget

One of the first things to look for is the budget tagged to each job posting. This is in case you prefer fixed-price jobs to hourly contracts. Truth be told, finding a reasonable salary is hard in oDesk as employers tend to see this website as an outsourcing option. Ergo, they can find people who will agree to cheaper pay.

This is not always the case. What is important is the value your effort and capabilities deserve. Sure, the chance of getting accepted increases the lower the amount you bid. But you must not be bound to that as you can build on a high reputation and feedback for future employers to realize that you are a nice catch.

To put it short, start small then move to projects with bigger pay.

Interests and Skills

Think twice before applying on jobs for the sake of a huge budget offered. Even if the pay is great, you cannot keep up with the work if it becomes tedious and boring. When it happens, the quality of your work may be greatly diminished and therefore disappoints your employer.

Keep your self satisfied and entertained even if any work should be taken seriously. This can be done by taking jobs that interests you or you’re familiar with.

While new interests can be found when working in unfamiliar jobs, do not make a habit out of it.

Fresh Job Offers

While on the job hunt, immediately apply for postings that are new and therefore likely has few to no applications. Your own application won’t be missed and ignored if the employer if it is at the top of the list.

You know that early bird saying? Well, it applies to finding job opportunities too.


All these five things can be checked for when finding the perfect oDesk job through the tools found in the website. Through search, you can look for keywords of interest. And through filtering, you can shorten the number of job postings available to the category, payment type, and employer rating you want.

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