Writing from home and getting paid to do it is a dream come true for me. I get to do something that challenges and engages me without dealing with many of the downsides that come with traditional employment. I save money and time by skipping the commute and I can tailor the environment I work in to meet my needs and preferences.
Most people do not have to be sold on the benefits of working from home. But, there are elements of writing from home that can be more complicated than having a conventional job. One of those elements is ensuring that you get paid for the writing work you do online. In a career where your employers may be scattered all over the world it can feel risky to simply trust that you will get paid for the work you complete.
Find clients through a writing platform
There are a number of different writing platforms out there that connect writers and employers. Some of these platforms have a list of open jobs and you apply for the ones that are a good match for your skills and experience. A well-known example of this type of platform is Upwork.
Another type of writing platform is one where you create a profile and get matched to opportunities that fit your interests and expertise. There is no list of opportunities on this type of platform. You wait to be presented with options. An example of this type of platform is Clearvoice.
Writing through a platform can help you ensure that you get paid because the platform acts as a middleman. The employer deposits funds for the job and, once the work is completed to their satisfaction, the platform releases the funds to you. If there is ever an issue between you and the client the platform has standard practices in place to mediate any problems that arise. This is one of the most secure ways to ensure that you get paid promptly and correctly.
It is important to understand that the peace of mind that comes with having safeguards in place to ensure you get paid will cost you. These writing platforms keep a percentage of each job you do which is known as a freelancer service fee.
Create a ‘work for hire agreement’ for freelance clients
As your career develops you will likely add freelance clients that you find outside of the writing platforms mentioned above. In these situations you will not have the security of having someone that makes sure you get paid. You have to be the person who ensures you get paid!
One way to increase your likelihood of getting paid by freelance clients is to create a work for hire agreement. This can be a simple document that outlines what you are going to be paid, how you are going to get paid, the frequency of payment, and what constitutes a completed project.
A work for hire agreement like this can help you and your client avoid confusion and maintain a good relationship. In addition, if there ever is any type of dispute you will have the contract to refer back to. Many employers will ask that you sign some type of work for hire agreement in order to protect their interests. But, a work for hire agreement can also protect you because it sets out clear expectations.
When you work remotely on a freelance basis it can be difficult to simply trust that your clients will pay you for the work you complete. You can mitigate much of that risk by finding clients through a writer’s platform and creating a contract for the work you find on your own. Make sure that you and the client agree on the expectations for the work, payment amount, and payment schedule before you spend any significant amount of time on their project.