Which creative skills are still hot for freelancers?

Which creative skills are still hot this November?

  • The online market for creative skills shrunk between July and September this year, but demand has recently started to grow again, with an upturn out of the depression now clearly visible, according to People4business.
  • The broad spectrum of new media skills are “ever popular”, the site’s database shows, but the demand growth for freelance creatives is actually being led by design – namely, interactive designers, games designers, 3D creatives and web designers.
  • In fact, despite the sheer number of web designers operating on the freelance market, “we are finding it difficult to find enough available talent in this area to meet [client] demand,” says People4 founder Duncan Taylor.
  • Freelancers with marketing-related skillsets are currently among the best-positioned creative candidates on interim jobs behemoth Freelancer.com
  • Social media practitioners, copywriters and Adsense marketers lead the pack, Saif, a site spokesman said. Evidencing the claim, he pointed out that Adsense-related project increased their appetite for freelancers by76% in Q3 2011.

What’s in store for creative freelancers in Q1 2012?

  • The Fast 50, a list of in-demand skills issued by Freelancer.com, casts technology-based skills, notably programming and software development, as the winners in terms of market demand early next year. HTML5 is likely to be increasingly sought-after.
  • Most of the growth Saif and his team expect to see during the first three months of 2012 will be thanks to small businesses “looking to streamline procurement processes and get the possible price.”
  • An anticipated rise in new self-employment, as traditional routes to work flat-line, is likely to see such “cash-poor” start-ups turn to freelancers, particularly for one-off projects, designed to get their business off the ground.
  • During the same initial months of 2011, Peopl4 says the real continued growth spurt will be in the new media and technical-creative spaces. Architectural and graphics skills, for example.

Freelancers beware:

  • “The biggest difficulty facing creative freelancers will be the ongoing pressure to differentiate themselves from the crowd,” Mr Taylor warned. “The good news [however] is that the general feeling from our clients is that when they decide to spend on creative work, they would rather get an excellent job for a bit more money than a poor job for peanuts.”
  • Meanwhile, Freelancer.com spoke of “continued economic uncertainty in the UK and across Europe” in Q1 2012. But more positively, such seemingly unwelcome conditions will be ripe for outsourcers and project-based work consultants.
  • The website reflected: “Overall, the ongoing growth of online outsourcing will continue, we expect to pass 2,000 jobs per day by early 2012, if not sooner.”


Nov 23, 2011
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