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When you start your professional career as an architect, you must decide if you want to work together with a group or studio, or if you will do it independently.
Both bring benefits, but being an independent freelance you can get involved in projects that interest you, work comfortably and for various clients, and you can even start your personal brand.
To be a freelance architect you must find clients who are interested in buying your services and for this, you can try different freelance platforms where there is a market of clients looking for an architect with your skills.
Getting involved in freelance work platforms will facilitate the process of finding your first clients, but before you start you should evaluate the different platforms available and choose the one that suits you best.
Freelancer.com is one of the best options to attract freelance jobs. It has a very complete app in which you can see from your mobile if there are orders that you can choose.
The job search engine is very good and allows you to filter many results.
The first month you can try the “Professional” plan for free, which allows you to offer up to 300 projects per month. You can make the most of that first month and then evaluate if you should buy that plan.
If not, you can still use the free membership that allows up to 8 offers per month.
In Freelancer.com you will find many categories in which you can apply your knowledge of architecture. It works like any other marketplace, where one party (the employer) publishes a project or contest and the other (the freelancers) offers to work on it.
However, you must bear in mind that it is a very competitive platform due to the number of freelancers that are registered, so you must strive to send quality proposals and make your profile stand out to position yourself better than other freelancers.
This platform will put at your disposal several tools that will increase the attractiveness of your profile, for example, you can verify your contact information such as email and phone number, your payment method, and even, for a cost of $ 5, you can certify your skills.
In Freelancer.com you have the right to charge whatever you want in relation to your services as long as they remain within the range established by the client.
Although it is possible to agree on higher prices, when you submit your application, you have a better chance of being selected if you stay within the prices proposed by the client.
In Upwork, it is simple to publish your work in your profile and get personalized offers. This website is home to thousands of top-notch professionals and here you can find work on many architecture projects.
How does it work?
On this platform, you can put yourself at the service of clients. You just have to worry about doing a good job, setting your hourly rate, and communicating your skills.
You should focus on creating a good profile that makes it clear what your skills and experience are.
As you carry out work on this platform, clients will be able to evaluate you and thus you will build your reputation on this page.
The better scores and testimonials you receive, the more chances you will have of being selected in job offers or that clients take the initiative to invite you to their projects.
Upwork is a platform that has a large community and where you will surely find many attractive projects to apply for.
Another positive point of this website is that here you can create a portfolio that clients can see.
There you can upload images of projects you have previously worked on so that potential clients have an idea of what your work is like, what programs you use, and what you specialize in.
Something interesting about Upwork is that the goal of its platform is to give companies access to professional freelancers. This aspect is well taken care of, especially in the admission process.
At the end of the registration, your application will be reviewed by a specialist of the platform and they will contact you if your profile is approved or not.
Guru is a platform that companies use to locate freelance professionals of any specialty. It works the same way as Upwork.
Create a profile, complete it with your skills, with a persuasive and honest bio, and with your best profile picture. Finally, set your hourly rate.
And when you have satisfied customers, ask them to write positive reviews for you with which you can rank better in searches.
Do not forget that your profile can become a good presentation page for all your potential clients.
Although it is a platform that has fewer members than Upwork or Freelancer.com, you will also find many job offers aimed at architects, in fact, architecture is in the top 9 of niches with more job vacancies.
Surely you will not only find offers where they look exclusively for an architect but someone who handles a program or software in which you are an expert.
Among the benefits that Guru offers is the workroom. This tool allows you to organize your work site perfectly, allowing you to configure your tasks, view your projects, communicate with your employers, share files, and a lot of other things.
Guru is an online market full of freelancers ready to take a project and make it happen; and being part of that world is quite simple since the site has an interface that is quite easy to understand and use.
Simply enter the site and select the option “Join Now” where you can create your account and optimize it to get freelance work. You can even turn on and configure notifications for projects you might be interested in, this way you take some weight off your shoulders by letting Guru take care of the searches for you.
Flexjobs has become known for helping its users find the best part-time or full-time jobs as quickly as possible.
Besides, it also offers online courses and seminars and anyone can use this website.
Flexjobs offers its users information about thousands of companies that have remote jobs, organizing them by category and location.
It has a team that is always attentive and available, to clarify your doubts or problems.
Unlike most freelance job platforms, at FlexJobs you must pay a monthly subscription to access job offers.
However, it is a very well invested money since on this platform you will find unique job offers that you will hardly see on other websites.
Important and recognized companies usually publish offers here and those are opportunities that will make you grow professionally.
Because each job offer that is published on the platform is manually reviewed to guarantee safety and quality to freelancers, to be part of this platform you must pay a monthly fee of $ 14.95.
This platform is very reliable and you can be sure that you will not find scams or fake job openings.
Apart from the job categories where you will find important offers related to architecture, in FlexJobs you will also find skill tests, advice, and special discounts.
Another important aspect is that there are opportunities for people with experience or without experience and if you are just entering the job market, you will surely find proposals that fit your profile and with which you can gain experience as a freelance architect.
PeoplePerHour brings together the entire freelance community in one place and offers attractive job opportunities for architects.
This company wants to help every independent worker to meet their goals and every organization to develop their projects.
It has thousands of registered businesses, which have found potentially qualified freelancers through their website. It has a customer service team, ensures identity protection and fraud.
Here you will find versatile offers of all kinds. You will have access to opportunities to carry out specific projects, to opportunities to work long-term in remote teams.
Like platforms such as Upwork and Freelancer.com, your profile will have a great influence on the decisions that clients make, so be sure to create a professional profile that shows your potential as an architect.
Choose a good profile photo, take care of the description of who you are and what you do, include all the relevant data and all the necessary contact information so that customers can reach you.
Once you have filled in all the information correctly, you will be able to access and apply for projects.
However, new users will always have greater difficulty accessing an opportunity, so you will have to work, be constant, and persevere to grow your reputation.
When a project is completed, you can receive a rating from your client. The better your score and comments, the more likely you are to opt for other projects.
You can also add examples of works you have done so that clients get to know you and see what you can do, which is important since the companies that are hiring pay a lot of attention to your experience.
Even if your experience is little, what matters is that it has quality, since that will motivate clients to hire you.
Houzz is a decoration app that, in addition to offering a multitude of ideas to decorate in the form of photos, allows users to put objects virtually in their homes.
This platform also allows them to contact experienced freelancers to carry out clients’ ideas, and that is where freelance architects are needed.
Houzz enables architects to grow professionally, have business opportunities, and not just locally.
What the creators of this platform recommend to professionals who want to work here is that they consider who their potential client is, who they want to reach and that they show them as they are.
To be successful on this platform, you must be an active user and open to dialogue and even criticism.
Thanks to this platform, professionals can develop their businesses, expose and manage their projects online and collaborate with clients and professionals from all over the world.
Your Houzz profile shows your business as a whole and provides information about your experience and work style through your portfolio of photos, customer reviews and interactions with the community.
Apart from that, with Houzz you can build your brand, increase your network of contacts and connect with individuals.
On this platform, professionals share ideas and collaborate with clients in an online environment.
It also helps you discover and keep up to date with new trends so that you can manage your digital presence effectively.
Dribbble is a community of creatives and graphic artists where architects also have space.
Here you can publicize your work, show it through a complete portfolio and also connect with people in your sector and access job offers with exclusive advantages for freelance profiles or people who want to work for foreign companies remotely.
The registration system in Dribbble has certain differences with respect to other platforms of this type since it is carried out by special subscriptions with an invitation system.
This means that to access all the special functions of the platform, you first have to receive an invitation via email from a user who already belongs to the Dribbble community and has subscriptions available to send referrals.
So if you have a friend who is part of the community and have subscriptions to share, it is best to ask them to invite you.
This platform hosts an attractive number of job offers associated with your professional profile which you can access with a premium account.
Although some can be viewed even from your free user to take references about companies that are hiring, open vacancies and requirements.
Whatever the case may be, you can locate Dribbble’s job offers in the vacancies section, know the requirements requested for each one and even go to the official website of the company or client that publishes the offer.
For this, you just have to click on “For Designers” and then on “Job Board” or “Freelance projects” depending on your preferred employment modality and the type of user you manage in Dribbble.
Behance is one of the largest platforms to publish portfolios of visual projects (architecture, photography, illustration etc.), and self-promote your talent so that it is known around the world, especially in front of companies or other users that belong to professional sectors of the creative universe and are looking for inspiration.
Apart from being a community or “social network” for people with a creative professional profile, it is also a space where you can network with companies and people with a high presence in the architectural world.
You can even access a job board and professional opportunities of all kinds that you can apply to as long as they fit your most demonstrable professional skills.
Currently, the Behance portal has more than 10 million users and many companies that work with architects are actively using its services.
If you have an Adobe Creative Cloud account (Adobe ID), you can automatically access Behance with the same password and login user.
If you do not have an account, you can also sign up for Behance for free. In this platform, you can access multiple job offers and apply for free as long as they fit your professional profile.
To do this, you just have to click on the “Vacancies” option and a complete list of vacancies results will automatically appear for all types of creative profiles around the world.
You can also find job offers by filtering and adjusting to your professional profile and/or work modality, your location, and the field of your profession or specialization.
Hireable is a great search engine for job offers where you will also find many opportunities related to architecture.
To review the available offers you only have to enter the job title or keywords and the geographical area you want.
The platform is like a directory and each offer will direct you to the original link where it was published. In general, each offer will show you a description of what it is about and an estimate of the annual salary.
To keep track of the offers that interest you, you can save the vacancies that you like, set job alerts according to what you need and you will also receive recommendations.
Here you will find face-to-face but also remote offers.
Is It Worth Being a Freelancer?
Of course, it is one of the main decisions that can benefit your career. It is a path that requires effort, but one that undoubtedly has many satisfactions.
Being a freelancer gives you the opportunity to choose your hours.
You will be able to work whenever you want and it will be easier to organize your schedules and reconcile work and personal life.
It also gives you the opportunity to work on what you love. This is not something that all professionals can say.
By working independently, you can choose the projects you develop. If you work for someone else, you may have to perform functions or projects that do not appeal to you.
What To Take Into Account When Choosing a Freelance Platform:
- The payment methods – how many days does it take to receive your earnings.
- How the platform protects the freelancers – if they offer you guarantees in case of being scammed.
- What is the type of clients present on the platform – do they align with your vision and goals as a freelancer?
- The fees they charge for each payment you receive – does it add up with your income expectation (keep in mind that if you are a beginner gaining experience might make it worthwhile).
- What benefits do you get for growing professionally within the platform.
Be a Freelance Architect
It is not easy to find a job that satisfies you.
However, the world is full of opportunities and many of them are on the web. Do not hesitate to change your direction or your thinking, there is always time to find a new job and many options where to find them.
Spend time evaluating the different possibilities and choose the freelance platform that best suits what you need.
Thanks to the internet, you can work from the comfort of your home and show yourself to potential clients in ways that, a few years ago, were unimaginable.
Consider that your time is valuable and that you must invest it well to find clients or projects, so try to make the most of it.