By Shravani Reddy
If you’ve started a freelance career in the telecom and tech industries, you know that they’re very competitive, and clients are looking for top talent to work on their projects. There’s been an influx of tech freelancers over the past few years, so you must learn how to stand out from the crowd in order to earn a competitive salary and attract as many clients as possible.
How do you increase your professional value? Here are five strategies that can help.
1. Create your brand.
There are many people with your skills in the freelance marketplace, so you must know your strengths and technical skills. Use these to attract a cluster of clients who are looking for those specific skills. Then invest in the quality of your services, including how you present yourself and how you deliver a project. If you show uniqueness, you will see your freelance career skyrocket.
2. Diversify your portfolio.
Clients and projects will require various skills and know-how. For you to increase your employability rate, you must have a wide portfolio that helps you stand out in different search filters. Reading widely will also give you a competitive edge, so keep informed on telecom and other technology advances.
3. Establish lasting relationships.
You must invest in your interpersonal skills. These will help you interact more successfully with your clients. Having strong interpersonal skills will increase your success rate in both your freelance career and your personal life. Learn to inform clients when you will be away, when there are changes to a project or if you need more time to complete a project.
Also, ask your clients to give you honest feedback, and learn to take criticism constructively and use it to improve your future projects. Future potential clients should not replace previous or current ones; they should supplement them. Every client relationship you establish is important, so invest in it.
4. Exceed expectations.
When delivering on assigned projects, always plan to deliver more than your clients expect: Under-promising and over-delivering will give you extra credit and improve your credibility. Remember that success in freelance is based on having a top-notch reputation. You certainly don’t want your clients to write negative reviews. When clients know that you deliver more than expected, they will become repeat customers.
5. Invest in your personal development.
Career and personal development can take different shapes, so you should explore all the options available to you. For instance, you can go back to school and get another degree; use tools that will boost your career; find peers in your industry to discuss developments; and read about new research and trends in the industry. In short, you can increase your value as a professional by taking advantage of all the educational and training avenues available to you.
Shravani Reddy is a staff author at Fieldengineer.com, an on-demand marketplace for telecom freelance engineers.