Thrive as a freelance: young professionals share their experience

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Illustration: Oishik Jawad

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Illustration: Oishik Jawad

Self-employed jobs have opened up a range of opportunities for young professionals in recent years, in different sectors.

In addition to being a photographer for an online news portal, Piyas Biswas has freelance work for three international organizations and a Bangladesh-based newspaper since 2016. “If someone is passionate and wants to make freelance work a viable career, he must know people in their industry, obtain certifications and create a solid portfolio to keep up with the competition, ”he shares. His work has been published in The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, CNN International, BBC Bangla, Deutsche Welle, Yahoo News, AP, MSN, Forbes, UCANews and The Daily Star.

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While the coronavirus pandemic has forced different professionals to contend with the work-from-home culture, many freelancers have traditionally worked this way. However, working is more difficult for women, as they are often expected to take on all family responsibilities while maintaining professionalism in their work.

“My workload has increased several times in the midst of the pandemic. As a mother, I had to adapt to the new family dynamic, because my children are still at home, ”says Azanta Rezwana Mirza, freelance writer, editor and transcriber. “That being said, flexibility and efficient time management are sought after in our business, as clients don’t check how long we work, but rather how efficiently projects are delivered.”

Abdullah Rayhan, a first year English Literature student at Jahangirnagar University, is a writer at SteamPug Content, an agency that provides freelance jobs for young professionals to earn money through specialist writing. He also writes occasionally for the Literature page of the Daily Star. “I want to continue my career in literature. Besides pocket money, freelance work helps me develop and improve relevant skills such as critical reading, writing, research and time management, between others, “Rayhan shares.

Umme Hani Esha and Zarin Tasnim Noushin are part of Women in Digital, a social enterprise that helps creative women who want to work on digital platforms showcase their skills.

“I have many opportunities as a freelance graphic designer and web designer to build relationships with international clients,” says Esha. “Workflow has decreased globally due to the pandemic. However, locally it has increased because clients are outsourcing to us. Frankly, the income is generally flexible, as is the nature of the work. -same.”

Zarin, graphic designer and web designer, recently started working as a digital marketer as well. She chose to become independent because she lives in Dhaka and has difficulty commuting. She keeps all the profits, works from the comfort of her home, and chooses her own clients. However, the unpredictable and inconsistent workload, unpaid legwork and lack of benefits are downsides of the job, she adds.

The author is a freelance journalist and marketing and international business student at North South University. Email: [email protected]


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