This month’s customer story comes from sales guru Sharon Evans. With a long, established background in the hair and beauty business, 5 years ago Sharon decided that it was time for a new challenge and a career change. Ever since she’s been working as a successful freelance sales professional.
We caught up with her to hear what life is like as a freelancer in the UK, what advice she has for aspiring entrepreneurs, and also to find out how she uses our online invoicing software.
Could you start by telling us a little bit about your background?
I’m a working mother of 2, one who’s now a midwife and the other who’s still at primary school. I used to own my own hairdressing salon and beauty business, which employed a number of staff. I was responsible for training all of them too. I sold the salons when I remarried and had my second child.
When did you become a freelancer?
With such a young family I felt a lot better being at home. But when my daughter turned 4 and started going to school I found myself needing to expand my mind once again. A friend of mine told me about the freelance sites Upwork and PeoplePerHour. I decided to set up a profile on the sites and put my main skill as selling.
It took a while to build up a good profile, because in order to be considered for any jobs you need to already have some experience. Getting those first few jobs was quite difficult given that there is so much competition.
But as time progressed I got jobs with longer and longer contracts. In fact I’m currently working for 4 different companies on longer term projects.
What do you find most interesting about your job?
What I love about my job is the variety. I never get bored as every job has a different set of requirements.
And what’s the most challenging part?
The main challenge during my working day is to not only ensure I meet the goals I set myself, but that I exceed them.
As I mentioned above, another challenge is the amount of competition. Especially from people who charge very low hourly rates. But I also feel that many people are looking for the experience and professionalism that comes with the higher prices. Good ratings and feedback on your profile are also extremely important.
What does a typical working day look like for you?
My typical working day is very much phoned based, and I spend a lot of time trying to get past company gatekeepers so that I can reach the decision makers.
Do you work alone or as a team?
At the minute I work alone, but I do work on quite a few projects that mean I need to subcontract other freelancers to do work for me.
How important is social media in what you do?
Social media works for me to an extent, although in my line of work it’s more about getting yourself starred on the freelancing sites you use (eg. getting a good rating). And I would recommend to anyone that wishes to work from home as a freelancer, regardless of what field they’re in, to be proactive about getting their profile on freelancing sites.
How did you hear about Zervant?
I found Zervant when looking for invoicing software on the internet. I was after something that made it quick and easy to invoice different companies. Zervant has everything I needed under one umbrella.
How does Zervant help you run your business?
It is easy to navigate, and it produces detailed invoices that really help me when it comes to expense management. Which is a vital part of being self-employed. Invoicing is done in a matter of minutes. I would thoroughly recommend Zervant to anyone out there looking for good invoicing software for their business.
Thinking of going freelance?
How about FREE, UNLIMITED invoicing!?
Use Zervant to create and send an unlimited amount of invoices. No catches or hidden fees. Click below to get started.