What is Freelancing ?

 A freelancer is someone who performs tasks, usually for multiple employers over the course of a year for a fee without being an official company employee. . This allows the freelance freedom to do tasks on their own. This process of doing job is called freelancing. For example, a magazine or website will have a core team of editors who hire freelance writers to write articles, or a TV production crew might hire freelance cameramen to work on one series of programmes.

Freelancers may work part-time or full-time. Because they are not considered employers, freelancers are allowed to work for other employers and are usually permitted to perform tasks in their own way, as long as the work gets done to the client’s specifications.

Freelancing can be tons of fun. You create your own hours, accept the jobs you want. Plus, many freelance and contract jobs come with the enormous perk of working from the comfort of your own desired environment.

Payment for freelance work also varies greatly. Freelancers may charge by the day or hour, or on a per-job basis. However, large clients such as businesses may have internal policies regarding freelance pay, so a freelancer accustomed to charging by the hour may be asked to accept a lump sum payment for a particular job. Although, if a client’s conditions are undesirable, the freelancer often does not hesitate to attempt negotiation before accepting or rejecting the job.

What are the advantages of freelancing?

Choose your work. Being a freelancer means you don’t have a boss telling you what to do so you can say ‘no’ to jobs you don’t want. You might also get to work at home for specific projects. As long as your work is delivered to the deadline most clients won’t mind how and when you do it – making freelancing a good option for people who don’t want to work normal office hours.

Better pay. Freelancers can negotiate your own rates with the companies who hire you. Companies are often prepared to pay freelancers a better rate than their own staff because they don’t have to pay for things like sick leave as part of the contract. The more experience you have then the more money you can ask for.

What are the disadvantages of freelancing?
  • Getting work 

    There are a lot of freelancers out there and getting your first few jobs can be hard. Just being good at what you do isn’t enough – you need to network, market yourself and make contacts because no-one will hire you if they don’t know you’re there! The workload can be unpredictable – sometimes you might be working all night to meet three deadlines in one week, while even the most successful freelancers have months where they get no work at all.

  • Managing your money

    You will not receive a regular pay cheque per month and you’ll also need to remember to keep some money aside for times when you’re ill or there’s no work – and while it might be great to have a holiday any time you want, remember that no-one will pay you for it!

There are both pros and cons to being a freelancer. Consider what is important to you. More work is being given to freelancers each year, so if you have special talents, it could be the best career option for you. But remember, you have to market yourself and sell your services. Once you get a good reputation and portfolio of work, it gets to be much easier.

One of the benefits of signing on as a freelancer with MENA Alliances is that we do the selling for you! Once your name and credentials are in our system, you will have the opportunity to do the work you love without the difficulty of trying to sell it!

Freelancer Of the Month: Dr. Rania Filfil

In 1rania2987,I left Palestine for eight years to further my studies. I had obtained an IB diploma from Lester B. Pearson College in Canada (1987) and then an MA in Applied Foreign Languages from Lumière University- Lyon, France. That same year, my mother was extremely ill and I decided to return to Palestine to be near her. She passed away that same summer and I was on the move again. I was already doing translations here and there – even before going to university.

These translations included interpreting for the French Consul General at the opening of the French Cultural Center in Gaza in 1989, and translating play therapy sessions at the Gaza Community Mental Health Program. However, still in the mindset of having a ‘fixed job’, I started working as Public Relations Officer for the World Trade Center (WTC) in Gaza. Signed up for a Ph.D. Program at La Sorbonne University in Paris.

My position at WTC was very interesting. Every day involved a variety of activities and I had the opportunity to travel for my job. However, I could not accommodate the working hours. I wanted to be in control of my own time.

 

In 1998, while finishing (and defending) my Ph.D., I found out that I was pregnant with my first child. I decided then that becoming a mother was the most important thing and I quit my job. By that time, Birzeit University was establishing the Institute of Law, which needed a lot of translation and interpretation work. With this, I started my career as a freelancer. I realized very quickly that I should plan realistically.  After some harsh experiences, I learned WHEN to say ‘yes, I can do it’ or ‘No, I cannot do it”.

This became my strategy. I put family first and filled in the free time with translation. I targeted quality first. Therefore, I raised my fees and explained to all my clients that I do one job at a time and submit a finished ready-to-use product. I kept my promise most of the time and respected quality and deadlines.

Moreover, I was transparent about the problems I faced, even if it meant telling my client that after having started the job, I did not think I was the right person to do it. Most clients appreciated the honest communication and I could refer them to the translators most competent for their work.

This strategy enabled me build cooperative rather than competitive relations with other translators. Virtually, we acted like teams and stepped in for each other.

The major problem I face is the current taxation system, which compels a home-based translator to spend hours of administrative work and to issue VAT invoices with payable taxes every month even when the invoice is not collected. Paying taxes consumes much of my time and efforts, and I have been calling for reform to ease on the procedures, but have received no official response.

 

The best part of my work is that I can take some time off and focus on my family, which I have been doing for the past two years. During this time, I participated in writing a book about Politics and the Power of Tourism. I wrote the chapter on Gaza, the “Missing Assets”.

My day as a freelance translator/interpreter does not have any fixed routine. I may work from home, from a café near my children’s school or at a swimming pool in Jericho. My office consists of an efficient laptop and Internet connection. There are days when I have conferences to interpret and I act like an employee for these days. I always say, I can work, swim and cook at the same time.

Dr. Rania Fulfil

How to Be Professional on MENA Alliances platform

How To Set Up An Account on MENA Alliances Platform

Registering and applying for MENA Alliances is an easy process! Below we will clarify simple steps for successful application to MENA Alliances’ freelancer program. To open the CONTRACTOR FORM follow these steps:

  1. Go to menaalliances.com

  1. Click on “Work”

OR
Go to the quick access menu at the bottom of the main page, and click “Become a Contractor”
OR
Type the following URL into your browser:   http://menaalliances.com/freelancer/ .

  1. After you have successfully reached the CONTRACTOR FORM, complete the required fields. *Required fields are marked by a red star. Please fill in all fields, otherwise your application will not be submitted successfully. After filling in all data, you can upload your CV in the upload section. There is a space to write comments or information that you think is important to be known about you.

  2. You are almost there! By clicking the button “Submit” at the bottom of the page, your application will be automatically sent to the recruitment office.

  3. You are done! You will receive an automatic email stating that your application was received and will be processed soon. The email will be sent directly to the email address provided earlier in the email address field.

Our Recruitment Process

 

Where does you application go once it is submitted? It will go through a systematic procedure that is briefly explained in this section.
The recruitment process at MENA Alliances consists of two major stages including: (1) Talent Review and Sourcing and (2) Attraction and Acquisition.

 

Stage 1: Talent Review and Sourcing

The main goal of this stage is to review and target potential talent/contractors that have unique skills in one or more of MENA Alliances’ service/product fields. This process will take place for each field of work.

Stage 2: Attraction and Acquisition

This stage includes four main processes as follows:

Picture3

Screening

At this point, each candidate must have completed and submitted the CONTRACTOR FORM offered on the MENA Alliances official website. The screening process begins with viewing and analyzing of these applications to identify the potential contractors based on skills, experience, background and samples of previous work (portfolios).

Assessing

The applications will be assessed and filtered according to the pre-mentioned factors. After that, the shortlisted candidates will pass to the next step.

Interviewing

After short listed candidates are identified, first-round interviews will be conducted for each candidate by the Talent Acquisition Specialist to obtain in-depth information about each candidate regarding his/her specialty. Another list (the Final List) will be prepared including only the candidates that show a certain level of seriousness, commitment and proficiency to go through a second-round interview – conducted by the business department.

Selection & Categorization

The contractors who pass the final round of interviews will be selected and contacted to verify availability, span/time of work and contact information to be ready for future offers.

MENA ALLIANCES provides a key differentiator in the MENA talent marketplace by providing businesses with hand-picked Freelancers through a creative selection process.As well as end-to-end Service Offerings utilizing a mix of the Talent Network and in-house experts.

MENA ALLIANCES’s Talent Network is classified into three different groups as the following:

Talent Levels

 

Additionally, the MENA ALLIANCES Talent Network is built to ensure that each level of talent is given opportunities that leverage their skills while ensuring that the rigorous selection process and quality of our talent reflect MENA ALLIANCES’s quality standards.

GroupPayment RateQuality Assurance OversightScope of Work
SilverLowHighSimple jobs
GoldMiddleMiddleMid-complexity
ExpertsHighLowComplex Jobs/need high skills

 

Talent Network Resourcing Model enhance the capacity of freelancers at Silver level, as they will receive direct feedbacks and comments on their work from freelancers at experts level which will give them the experience that they will need.


 

How to Become a Professional Freelancer at MENA Alliances

 

Tip 1: Show your Work/Create an Online Profile

 

When you are new to freelancing, getting your business off the ground is all about hustle: creating a solid and complete online profile and web-presence; finding ways to prove your skills; and being persistent in your pursuit of new clients. This is how most freelance work is offered: remotely and online!

Tip 2: Care about Your Clients

 

Often as a freelancer, you will be working as part of a larger project (e.g., you may be writing content for a website while others are designing it, coding it, promoting it, etc.). So take an interest! If you feel it is appropriate, do not be afraid to ask your client conversationally “How is it going?”. This is particularly true when you are working for smaller companies.

Tip 3: Stay Cool!

Freelancing can be stressful.
Deadline looming? Forget your weekend off!

 

When you are snowed under with work to do, it can be difficult to stay positive and appreciate the world around you. At times like this, it is crucially important to maintain a sense of humor and keep things in perspective. Staying cool under pressure is much more attractive to a client than tearing your hair out.

Tip 4: Be Totally Reliable

You are a professional selling a service. If you say you will finish the work by Friday, get it done by Friday. Stay up all night, hire other freelancers to help you, do whatever it takes. The best way to lose clients is to let them down—so don’t! Ever!

 

 

Now is Our Moment To SHINE!

Every day at MENA Alliances, we get up with a passion for making a lasting, positive difference in people’s lives through the use technology. As we do, we’re continuously seeking to better integrate the technology to offer work opportunities WITHOUT boundaries for talent in the MENA region through our daily actions.

Today we dedicate ourselves to a new mission – to support businesses through enhancing their productivity and efficiency while simultaneously creating economic opportunity for MENA talent.

I am excited to share the first newsletter of MENA Alliances Group Inc.  The purpose of this newsletter is to provide you with sights, tools and tips to make the freelancing & outsourcing work for you and keep you up to date with the latest technology and business trends.

Through our newsletter, you will have opportunity to meet with our freelancers, customers and employees and learn how we’re pioneering the agile workplace.

As we strive to connect unmatched talent with opportunities, The MENA Alliances Group Inc.  and our international strategic partners are committed to creating new value for our freelancers, our customers and the communities we proudly serve across the MENA region.

Our unique online model is overcoming geographical obstacles and bringing new work opportunities for youth and women in the MENA region. Our freelancers will have access to more projects as MENA Alliances grow and we will provide our freelancers with additional financial security by providing guaranteed payment after a project is approved by a client. In addition, MENA Alliances’s unique quality assurance review of work provides women and youth the experience they need to enter the workforce and improve their skills by providing them with instruction and feedback in order to submit the best possible work to clients. Furthermore, we give freelancers more control over their career path, as they choose the projects they will work on.

We are working tirelessly to create more professional work opportunities for women in the MENA.   Our unique online business model enables women to break social, geographical and political boundaries to be engaged in the marketplace. We will help to provide them with skills that they need to work online through our free webinars facilitated by international specialists in different fields.

We have a new comprehensive business plan in place and are consolidating an accurate timeline that involves working with customers from around the world. We see the challenges ahead and continue to work tirelessly to innovate develop procedures to tackle them.

We thank our customers, strategic partners, mentors, loyal freelancers and contractor members who have made this journey with us every step of the way. They never stopped believing in the power of online work to create mass jobs for women and youth.

And finally, I want to thank all of our committed employees who have come together to make our online model a reality. Your trust, patience, focus and unwavering passion have inspired me over these many months.

Now is our moment to shine!

 

Thank you for yocf8ae0cc-b3fb-43c4-ab57-833be87fdebcur interest in The MENA Alliances Group.

 

I invite you to join our  talent network in order to be engaged in our free webinar series and get work opportunities. As we keep moving toward our commitments, we welcome your input and feedback on our newsletter and services and look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you for your feedback and support!

 
Abeer Abu Ghaith
Founder & CEO, MENA Alliances

Writing To Be HEARD

 Writing To Be HEARD

MENA Alliances would like to invite you to start writing your thoughts, insights, tips and experiences in the freelancing or outsourcing field.  Please send us your article in Arabic or English to publish it on our blog at [email protected] We will choose articles to print in our upcoming newsletters.