Largest outsourcing website freelancer.com celebrates $100 million in freelancer earnings

Screen shot 2011-08-30 at 10.01.51 AM.jpgFreelancer.com, which is Aussie-owned and the world's largest outsourcing marketplace, today announced that the site has passed $100 million in user earnings.

Freelancer.com CEO Matt Barrie says the figure proves that building a global team on a shoestring budget for any entrepreneur or small business is now a realistic, mainstream concept: "More individuals and businesses are discovering exactly how far they can extend their competitive advantage using Freelancer.com," said Barrie.
"Through an established platform like ours, outsourcing results in quality output while simultaneously reducing costs. We estimate that the US$100 million in projects paid out through the site has saved businesses around US$1 billion in equivalent skilled labor costs in industrialized economies."

According to Freelancer.com, the United States and UK are the biggest outsourcing nations, followed by India, Canada, and Australia.

Through Freelancer.com, businesses can simply post a project on the site where millions of professional freelancers globally can bid to complete the work, starting from  US$30, with the average job accomplished for under US$200. Employers are guaranteed to only receive high-quality, timely work from freelancers via the site's Milestone Payment system -- a system that withholds payment until the employer is fully satisfied with the delivered work.

"Employers want to know they're hiring reliable and capable freelancers, so these decisions are not determined by price alone, but a combination of a freelancer's bid, their reputation, and suitability to the task -- determined by factors such as adherence to submission dates, quality of work and past employer feedback," explains Barrie.

"Reputation is the most valuable long-term investment for a freelancer, and most freelancers establish their reputation by going above and beyond to provide exactly what businesses need. 1.2 million jobs posted on Freelancer.com to date is a tribute and testament to their professionalism all over the world."

There are over 400 categories of work that can be outsourced or crowdsourced through Freelancer.com, with IT being one of the most popular. Freelancer.com has also recently launched a design contest site -- the world's largest -- where users can get 18 different types of design, including logos, business cards, t-shirts, and more.

"You can get virtually anything done, whether it's designing a website, data entry, or something as esoteric as designing an iPhone app so you can propose to your girlfriend! With Freelancer.com, 2.7 million professionals are readily available to deliver high-quality work at a fraction of the cost," Barrie concluded.

To post a Design Contest

Top five project categories:
1. PHP 9%
2. Website Design 7%
3. Graphic Design 5%
4. Data Entry 4%
5. Copywriting 4%

Top five outsourcing countries:
1. United States 40%
2. Great Britain 10%
3. India 7%
4. Canada 5%
5. Australia 5%

Top five freelancing countries:
1. India 34%
2. United States 11%
3. Pakistan 9%
4. Bangladesh 6%
5. Philippines 4%

Top 10 US outsourcing cities:
1. New York
2. Los Angeles
3. Miami
4. Chicago
5. Houston
6. Atlanta
7. San Francisco
8. San Diego
9. Dallas
10. Austin

5 Comments

James A said:

Freelancer.com may be celebrating $100 million in others' earnings but we shouldn't be just because they're "Aussie-owned".

Crowdsourcing models are price-war based, not quality driven. Any suggestion otherwise is undermined by the stats: these sites are driven by cheap labour from economically disadvantaged countries (e.g. India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Philippines).

Anyone in any service industry (who knows their business) knows you can't provide low price and high quality simultaneously ... not unless something illegal, immoral or exploitative is occurring en route:
-- poor workplace conditions
-- unrecognised qualifications
-- no certification or professional standards
-- environmental impact.

Consider also that every successful contract that is "earned" may have involved the exploitation of the remaining unsuccessful individuals/businesses (e.g. as done by "competition"-based models used on other crowdsourcing sites).

Sadly, it's first-world clients who support the model, thinking that "cheap quality" exists (but who conveniently ignore the fact that they are dealing with the third-world for their outcome).

Crowdsourcing is the manufacturing sweat-shop of the internet. Do you really want to be a part of a technological trend like that?

The broker said:

Why don't they show us their work, the scammers??

James A Designer in Cloud Cuckoo Land! said:

@James. I have used sites like Freelancer for years and your argument is soooo weak and flawed. First and foremost, how is an independent worker in Manila or Mumbai working from home while raising their kids anything like a manufacturing sweatshop?

poor workplace conditions - agreed, the homes of many of these individuals would be deemed 'poor conditions' by Western standards, but - reality check - its the developing world and living standards are different.

unrecognised qualification - unrecognised by who? Seriously, get a grip! If you doubt their expertise, ask them questions or check prior work, its not hard!

no certification or professional standards - you are running out of negatives now aren't you - isn't this the same as the point you made before?

environmental impact? Yeah, good one. So many more CO2 emissions are generated by a computer in India than in Australia!

Now my turn...

There are highly qualified and experienced professionals in places other than the Western world and their cost of living is a fraction of the cost of living in the West. Also their priorities and culture are a little different and they haven't got the same 'needs' as we do in the western world. They don't 'need' a TV in every room, they don't 'need' to make $100 an hour, they don't 'need' to drive a flash car, they don't 'need' a bigger house than their next door neighbour.

This means they can afford to do work for alot less without compromising on quality. I have had countless services provided by Freelancers from the West and the developing world and more often than not I have been happy with the quality and the price. Problems are rare and usually reconcilable.

The average wage in the countries you draw issues with is low and more often than not freelancers are earning many times what they would if they worked in the local job market, yet, at the same time they are able to deliver high quality work, fast turnaround times and simultaneously smash the shit out of the price quoted by a designer in the west.

It seems alot of your comments suggest the workforce is not Freelance at all and some boss has an office with hundreds of employees working away for relatively low salaries while he coins in the big money.. welcome to the American dream and capitalism son! Check General Electric, Accenture, Ford, Toyota and any other big business in the world - you don't see many employees getting rich - why aren't they also sweatshops? On a smaller scale - you get a quote for a website in the US or Aus from an agency for $40k - how much of that ends up in the pocket of the grunt doing the work?

Think before you type in future and why not just be honest - you are a designer or similar and you are rightly afraid that you have no economic future as you are mediocre at what you do and not willing or interested in raising your game. Reality check number 50 - get over it - skill up mate or bunker down and tighten your belt... the future ain't so bright for middle of the road Mr & Mrs Jones who think they can rock up to work 20 minutes late, take an hour for lunch, spend half the day on facebook or twitter and still come away with a wage that 7bn other people would give an arm and a leg for!

b.o.t. said:

Sigh... this is what will kill our industry. Good enough for Alex Bogusky to get in so early (who probably did the first commercial flashmob for 'truth' years before it was hip), I guess this is where it's headed.

Damn you internet.

It's not just that people in un-developed or poorer countries don't want as much, or aren't as qualified (Masters in IT are working as SEOs), it's just they have many more people in their country all competing for good jobs, and there is a general lower income there with also a lower cost of living when compared to Australia.

Talented and helpful creative industry people here are hardly suffering due to the competition. Sure there is a comparison among 'price shoppers' but in the end the quality of the result and the after-sales service is what will put anyone out in front. Being local and having a wide reputation means you are more accountable.

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