Category Archives: Web Design & Development

Web & Mobile Accelerator program seeks startups in sharing economy, new financial services, productivity tools, edtech, and software development tools

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Amsterdam, NL, 05-Dec-2016 — /EPR INTERNET NEWS/ — Rockstart, the world’s greatest startup machine, announces applications are open for the 6th Web & Mobile Accelerator program. The program begins on March 1, 2017 and lasts for 150 days. Rockstart supports entrepreneurs with a strong purpose by connecting them with the brightest minds in the industry, including experienced mentors, successful founders, and investors.

Program Director Rutger van Waveren remarks, “When considering founders for the Accelerator, we look for a great team with a well built product that focuses on a problem worth solving. In particular, this year we’re looking for startups who are working to solve big problems under the banner of technology that lets us live meaningful lives: sharing economy, new financial services, productivity tools, making education better, and tools that make software development more efficient and accessible. We’re also interested in ideas to enable the company of the future such as tools that make companies more effective and efficient, creating better logistics systems, 3D printing and computer security. Teams should be able to make use of the latest technologies such as AI, blockchain technology and sensors.”

WEB & MOBILE ALUMNI
Rockstart Web & Mobile startups like 3D Hubs, Peerby, Wercker, Deskbookers and many more have created successful businesses across a variety of B2C and B2B categories. 2016 graduates include Otly!, a bank for kids and their parents and winner of the UberPitch award, which led to funding by Uber. TIQ, a time-tracking solution for the enterprise, won the Exact Software Emerging App of the Year award and was mentioned by the Financieele Dagblad and Lawyer magazine as one of the best startups in the area of legal tech. Surance helps people get more out of their savings by making professional asset management easy and accessible for everybody. Two leading financial institutions have chosen Surance as their exclusive provider for robo-advice technology. To learn more about all the alumni of the Web & Mobile program, please check our website.

HOW TO APPLY
Rockstart’s 2017 Web & Mobile Accelerator will be accepting applications until January 15, 2017 and the program begins March 1, 2017 in the center of Amsterdam. For more information, please take a look at our stats.

Apply now!

SOURCE: EuropaWire

The realWITS Company Launches Websites for Real Estate Companies Dubbed “Smarter”

An experienced and respected real estate participant and An experienced and respected real estate participant and SEO adviser has launched a new company, realWITS, to help brokers design actionable real estate company websites, get better results and learn how to integrate sales campaigns with modern techniques of leveraging real estate SEO benefits, providing interactive customer service and challenging not only with local online competitors but also with highly recognized online consumer real estate portals.

Real Estate Web Development Demands Compelling Websites

The company’s mantra is “Smarter Real Estate Websites,” and its mission is to educate real estate professionals about online marketing trends so that they can create more functional websites, optimize searches, integrate modern applications and produce dynamic content.

The real estate industry has traditionally resisted change, but modern real estate Web development and real estate SEO for websites require transformations from conservative advertising and marketing strategies to engage new generations of clients.

Randi Thornton, founder of realWITS, has built a reputation as the go-to SEO Google Gurufrom many years of experience in website development, online promotion and the real estate industry. Many real estate websites treat their online efforts as sideline activities or hobbies, and after working with big branded real estate company websites, Thornton feels strongly that the industry fail to take advantage of their full online marketing potential.

Major problems in most company real estate websites include the following shortcomings:

• Brokers do not control their online presence and messaging.
• Website designs fail to meet the needs of people who search online.
• Real estate websites struggle to achieve strong SEO rankings because of the original website build-out.
• Lack of regular technology upgrades force websites to become outdated.
• Failure to take advantage of website lead-generating capabilities.

Smarter Websites Integrate Design, Content and Functionality

Many real estate companies limit their prospects by only trying to compete with other brokerages, a strategy which fails to take advantage of today’s technologies used by other successful industries and the interactive potential of online marketing.

A popular destination real estate broker website strategically focuses on integration of successful leading websites approaches across all industries, and marketers need to incorporate key elements of design, fresh content, Google rankings, mobile technology, and fast processing speeds to keep up with competitors.

Savvy real estate brokers can optimize website performance by considering the following elements of design and function:

Create Distinctive Designs

Website design generates the platforms that launch successful online real estate marketing campaigns, and conceptual elements should compel a casual online website visitor to engage with actionable functionality by incorporating visually appealing design, easy to navigate structures and an intuitive user experience.

• Forward-thinking real estate brokers will take a look around them and learn from other applications that have gone viral.
• Stunning designs often depend on using a simplistic look and feel, clean site architecture, complementary color schemes, accessible search and intuitive controls.
• Functional copy includes compelling content that delivers quantifiable local communications that help buyers make informed and quicker buying decisions.
• A real estate company website needs to offer photo-centric platforms for property listings.
• Websites attract and retain buyers and sellers with property explore functionality that exposes robust search activity.
• Proper usage of on-site real estate SEO including keyword density, on-page SEO best practice techniques, optimize company brands, local authority rankings and online reputations.

Fluidity VS Static

Smarter real estate company websites create fluid designs that make incorporating changes and updating copy easy to accomplish. Google search engines now place great emphasis on freshness of content when ranking websites in organic searches. Effective sites leave room to make modular changes in designs and copy to take advantage of new technology and online trends.

Growing Impact of Mobile Devices

Consumers increasingly use their mobile devices to find products and services, keep track of personal appointments, make social connections and interact with local businesses. Real estate company website designs need to look good and provide searches with the information they seek on a variety of mobile-device screens.

Monitoring Traffic and Online Behavior

Analytic tools study behind-the-scenes practices and chart consumer behavior to help website owners tweak their designs, change their design strategies and respond to customer concerns and feedback. Smarter real estate company websites use these tools to generate leads, predict consumer behavior, stay ahead of marketing trends and create better real estate SEO campaigns.

Real Estate SEO Marketing

Real estate SEO (search engine optimization) marketing works differently than traditional advertising, and learning to leverage the benefits of on-site SEO helps real estate companies establish online authority, build reputations, interact and create enthusiasm for buyers and sellers, regions and neighborhoods.

Clever brokers will take advantage of unique community real estate data so people revisit for information and connections with a relevant, trend setting online real estate source.
Pinterest Type Usage of Imagery

Effective online real estate marketing requires correct usage of photos to productively showcase properties. No matter how well written a property description is it will never grab the attention of a buyer better than a picture will.

The main emphasis of a company real estate website should be imagery that tells a story and conveys “I want to see more” from buyers, says Randi Thornton.

The realWITS company offers expert real estate company website design, on site-SEO application, education, and strategy for savvy brokers who want to produce above-average returns from their online marketing dollars. The company will function as an authoritative source of designs, strategies and consultations on all the issues that impact a real estate company website.

Via EPR Network
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SearchCatalyst Highlights Why Duplicate Web Content is Bad for Small Businesses

Duplicate web page content is bad for any website because it greatly affects SEO, but SearchCatalyst, an SEO agency dealing exclusively in small business Internet marketing, says it is particularly bad news for small businesses.

Aside from negatively impacting on a user’s online experience, duplicate content is particularly disastrous for SEO. It affects the site’s credibility, which is one of the most important ways a site can rank highly, organically, on search engines like Google. Google ranks sites based on several criteria, each of which is built into its complicated search algorithm. Relevancy is the most important – does the site list content relevant to the search query? – but credibility is a close second.

However, this issue affects all businesses, big and small. An issue that is more likely to affect small businesses, or expanding ones in the processes of upgrading their websites and online presence comes down to duplicate content on developer sites. Quite often web developer domains – where developers work on websites – are indexed by Google. Developers can be completely unaware they have created duplicate content but as websites take a few months to develop they can sit on developer domains for a while and the duplicate pages will negatively affect search rankings on Google.

This generally impacts small businesses to a greater extent than larger companies because they don’t have the scope and finances to implement new pages quickly.

Google’s algorithms are highly sophisticated and can filter out sites that have duplicate content. Some may be labelled as spam as a result, whilst others will just be listed much lower down on the SERPs. Google has become much better at detecting duplicate content since the Panda algorithm update, which all small businesses and developers should be aware of.

SearchCatalyst offers affordable SEO services to small businesses looking to boost organic search rankings and gain greater online exposure at minimal cost.

Via EPR Network
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These Days A Professional, Efficient And Stylish Website Is A Vital Component Of Any Business Aiming To Be Successful

We are currently living in a very modern age of technology, which has filtered through into every aspect of our lives, from ordering our weekly groceries online, to booking train, cinema and concert tickets, to children’s online learning environments and schoolwork. Everything nowadays is done online.

A very important part of having a business in the twenty-first century is having a website. You need a website that clearly displays what you are and what you do, and immediately impacts to your customers why they desperately need you.

Not only do you need a website, but it has to be a good one. The best way to achieve the top website for your company is to hire a freelance web designer or a web design team. A web design team will generally give you a better result as each member of the team has his or her own strengths, that will all be pulled together to achieve the exact website you need and want.

There are hundreds and hundreds of web designers out there, so you need to carefully look through their online portfolios to see what captures your attention. There will be some work you really love and others that you don’t. You will also notice that some web design companies have worked for very large, international companies, whilst other have only done work for local businesses. Other companies will have worked for a range of large, successful companies and smaller, local companies.

Ideally you want to try and pick a web design company whose work you love, that is located near to your business. That way you can really connect with them personally and easily have meetings to discuss exactly what you need and what you want from them. It’s much easier to talk about web design in person rather than over the phone.

If you are in South East England, or more specifically in Kent, then the team you want is TME (http://www.tmesolutions.co.uk). They are a web design and online marketing agency, based in Kent, which has been running for seven years. They are a close-knit, family run team comprising of fourteen enthusiastic and creative coders, designers, online marketers and project consultants.

Over the years, they have built their business to be efficient, creative and successful, yet friendly. They’ve worked to provide web design in Kent for relatively small local companies such as Lau Hairdressing in Maidstone, Express Cleaning Supplies in Aylesford, and ACE Sheds in Ashford. Their new websites allowed these local companies to bloom; expanding greatly and increasing their profits rapidly.

As their own company grew, TME also started to work for some of the biggest, most successful and most profitable companies in the world. This includes the likes of Tile Depot, who own over twenty stores across the UK and Centroid Motion Capture who provide animation for major films. Additionally, Worldwide Parcel Services, who are one of the largest parcel couriers in the UK, and most impressively, an exclusive training portal for Samsung Mobile.

TME are one hundred percent committed to producing amazing, creative and useful websites. They take companies and aim to boost their profits, regardless of how famous they already are. They strive for improvement.

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Alentus teams with GamaSec to provide Web Application Security services

Alentus announced today its partnership with GamaSec, a remote online website security scan service. GamaScan identifies web application vulnerabilities, provides real-time vital business solutions, and recommends optimally matched solutions.

Clearly, Web applications are the weakest link in an organization’s security strategy. Web applications are more difficult to protect than traditional applications that reside behind a firewall. Web application security needs to be stringently checked on a regular basis using an automated Web application security scanner.

GamaSec’s commercial solution, branded “GamaScan”, is a remote online web vulnerability-assessment service. delivered via SaaS (software-as-a-service) and is designed to identify security weaknesses in web applications. The GamaSec Application Vulnerability Scanner identifies application vulnerabilities (e.g. Cross Site Scripting (XSS), SQL injection, Code Inclusion etc.) as well as site exposure risks. It also ranks threat priority, produces highly graphical, intuitive HTML reports, and indicates site security posture by vulnerabilities and threats.

Avi Bartov, GamaSec CEO comments, “Our core business is to help our partners mitigate risks on their website by providing real-time evaluation reports and recommendations. We provide service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Application vulnerabilities are the Achilles heel in the protection of websites. It is better to know your weaknesses and fix them than wait to respond after an attack.”

“At Alentus, we strive to offer our customers the highest quality extensive range of services that small businesses need to maintain a successful online presence” says Peter McNeill, Sales Manager at Alentus Corporation. “After learning about GamaSec and their web vulnerability assessment service, I felt that this partnership adds a valuable set of tools to assist Alentus with what it needs to succeed in today’s security conscious Internet.”

The partnership agreement will enable Alentus Corporation to offer GamaSec’s website scan security services – which include blacklist monitoring and application vulnerability scanning services – to their shared web hosting and dedicated server clients.

Alentus will use GamaSec’s private partner interface to deliver and manage the delivery of the entire range of GamaSec services.

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Increasing Numbers Of Pensioners Turn To Freelancing

An increasing number of pensioners are turning to freelance work in order to boost their pension pots, according to research carried out by Future Foundation.

The study conducted for pension provider Friends Life suggests that enterprising pensioners take freelance jobs as consultants, set up as online traders and establish their own businesses, in order to supplement their retirement savings.

Researchers tagged the group ‘wearies’ (working, entrepreneurial and active retirees), saying that due to inadequate savings, by 2020 many people who are in their seventies will simply not be able to afford to completely give up work.

Martin Palmer, Head of Corporate Benefits Marketing at Friends Life, said: “Necessity is the mother of invention and ‘wearies’ will be among the most innovative and entrepreneurial contributors to the UK economy, despite their senior years.”

Just over half of the people surveyed who had already retired said they would be prepared to work part-time if it meant they could boost their pension pot, with three-quarters of those yet to retire saying they would be willing to do the same.

Unemployment could be set to rise further, potentially leading even more people to consider freelance work in the very near future. According to the Wall Street Journal, Adam Posen suggested in a speech at Nottingham Business School that hoarding of labour may have restricted productivity growth in certain sections of the UK economy, saying: “If market discipline hits the dawdlers, then most of the productivity puzzle goes away.”

However, Mr. Posen suggested that many of those made redundant would eventually find new work as the economy adjusts towards more productive industries. He also insisted that the financial crisis had not permanently damaged Britain’s economy, and that it could resume growth further down the line.

It’s thanks to the capabilities of the internet that continually aids freelancers in finding work, especially the many outsourcing websites. One outsourcing website in particular, called OutsourceMyProject, has seen a noticeable increase in the amount of freelancers bidding on the projects posted on the website, by many different companies.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: ”The demand for freelance work is continually increasing. With over £1 million worth of projects posted on our site last year alone, freelancers of all ages are securing work everyday.”

He went on to say: “The service OutsourceMyProject provides is hassle-free and the ideal way for businesses to find the exact talent they are looking for. By choosing a quote that fits within their budget, businesses are able to increase their chances of surviving a recession by saving money at every opportunity, while freelancers are able to boost their income by putting their knowledge and skills to good use.”

OutsourceMyProject is a UK based platform that’s been created to open up the global market place for professional services across a wide range of sectors. To date, the concept of outsourcing professional services has been limited to large companies and organisations. However, OutsourceMyProject enables small and medium sized organisations, entrepreneurs and individuals to successfully outsource business both at home and abroad too.

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Entrepreneurs get backing from both David Cameron and the Federation of Small Businesses

A pressure group that aims to promote the interests of small businesses in the UK has launched a campaign designed to celebrate the country’s entrepreneurs.

The Federation of Small Business (FSB) has said it wants to celebrate “real life entrepreneurs” who take the risk of following an idea, start up on their own and work to grow a business. Starting last Monday, a roadshow commenced visiting various locations across England to provide advice and networking support to independent workers.

As part of the events, serial entrepreneur and regular Financial Times columnist Mike Southon will speak about the main themes of the FSB’s manifesto. Key areas include reducing and simplifying tax issues faced by small businesses, taking a new approach to regulation, and opening up export markets.

FSB Chairman John Walker wants to see an “atmosphere of entrepreneurship” created in the UK, allowing anyone with a good idea to potentially set up and run their own business. He said: “In short, turning a good idea into a business is one of the most positive acts an individual can perform for themselves and the community in which they live.”

In addition to the comments from the FSB, David Cameron has praised the spirit of entrepreneurs who are brave enough to follow their dreams to become freelance workers and start their own business.

Giving a speech last month in central London on responsible capitalism, the prime minister said that more than anything he admired “the bravery of those who turn their back on the security of a regular wage to follow their dreams and start a company”, adding that he believed the UK was “fizzing with business potential”.

He said: “When people take risks, with their own ideas, energy and money, when they succeed in a competitive market where anyone can come and knock them off their perch at any time, we should celebrate entrepreneurs who get rich in that way.”

Outsourcing to freelance workers is a concept that has made it possible for many entrepreneurs to successfully get their ideas off the ground and established as profitable businesses.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “Outsourcing is providing a welcome boost to the economy, especially for the many entrepreneurs and small businesses who would otherwise be struggling to access the skilled services they require at an affordable price.”

Official figures released last month revealed a significant increase in the number of people who have chosen to become self-employed and take on freelance projects. More than 100,000 people took on self-employed status during the period, taking the total number of independent workers in the UK up to 4.2 million, according to a report by the BBC.

A report published by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) yesterday said people from a much wider array of backgrounds and occupations had now turned to self-employment. However, Dr John Philpott, chief economic adviser at the CIPD, suggested many would move back to full-time employment if the jobs were available.

Loren Holland went on to say: “The freelance sector is booming at present, with a wealth of skilled and experienced workers available on flexible and affordable contracts. Entrepreneurs and start up businesses are tapping into the freelance market and this is clearly benefiting the economy”.

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Is A Double Dip Recession Around The Corner?

The looming possibility of a double dip recession is likely to see more UK businesses striving to cut costs in 2012, with figures recently released by the Office for National Statistics suggesting the UK could be heading for its first double dip recession since 1975.

The British economy shrank by 0.2% during the three months to December and the Bank of England has warned that the private sector is planning job cuts. The accountancy firm Deloitte claimed that half of all chief financial officers in the UK see cutting costs as a priority over the next 12 months. The growing prospect of a double dip recession is set to cement this view, with more businesses taking a proactive approach by turning to freelancers and switching to outsourcing in an attempt to reduce overheads.

Chairman of the National Outsourcing Association, Martyn Hart, said recently that as well as the upfront cost savings, outsourcing jobs such as copywriting and web design to specialists allows firms to concentrate on their core business. “It is better to focus on things like customer satisfaction, outmaneuvering the competition and securing new business. Outsourcing frees up resources to be the best you can be, in the business you are truly in,” he said.

Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer Ed Balls insisted Osborne should be blamed for putting the economy into reverse, saying: “Far from the eurozone crisis being to blame, it is only rising exports that kept us out of recession last year. By clobbering the economy with spending cuts and tax rises that go too far and too fast, the government has left us badly exposed if the eurozone crisis deepens this year.”

These poor economic growth figures have resulted in many businesses gearing up for a likely double dip recession, keen to cut unnecessary head count and overheads. Many companies are achieving this through outsourcing particular business functions to freelancers, who charge a far lower price when compared with what can be found on the high street or through employing an internal resource.

There are several online outsourcing marketplaces that offer a hassle free outsourcing service, where freelancers can sign up and offer their services to companies who post details of the work they need completing.

Helping businesses to be more robust against the looming recession, OutsourceMyProject is an example of an outsourcing website that is reaping the benefits of the outsourcing boom, with over £1 million worth of projects posted in the past twelve months.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “We have seen a significant increase in the number of companies taking proactive measures in preparation for another recession.”

He went on to say: “The service Outsource My Project provides is hassle-free and the ideal way for businesses to find the perfect freelance worker to outsource their business functions too.”

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Earning a self employed income is easier than you think…

With an increase in UK unemployment figures last week, it is good to know that as a counter measure the number of self-employed workers is on the increase, showing the determination of those who are unemployed to survive, while also illustrating the fact that earning an income is easier than most people think.

With many companies increasingly having to cut fixed headcount numbers through redundancies, many of those who find themselves unemployed are seeking out their own work, opting for self-employment and freelancing instead.

Official figures released last week by the Office for National Statistics revealed a significant increase in the number of people who have chosen to become self-employed and take on freelance projects over the past few months; more than 100,000 people took on self-employed status during this period of time, taking the total number of independent workers in the UK to 4.2 million, according to a report by the BBC.

A separate report published by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) also stated that people from a much wider array of backgrounds and occupations had now turned to self-employment than in previous years.

Online marketplaces allow freelancers to sign up and search for work, which is advertised by companies seeking to outsource business functions to freelancers rather than employee fixed in-house teams. Last year was a particularly buoyant year for freelance marketplaces, as both the demand for freelance services increased , as companies look for flexible staffing solutions, coupled with an increase in the supply of freelancers operating within the UK.

Outsourcing business functions to freelancers has been a lifesaver for many companies in 2011, with this trend towards outsourcing looking likely to continue in 2012.

One outsourcing website in particular that has reaped the benefits of this increase in demand is OutsourceMyProject. With over £1 million worth of projects posted onto the site over the past 12 months, the business is looking forward to what 2012 will bring for them.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of Outsource My Project said: “We are expecting the demand for freelance staff to continue increasing this year, as companies continue to cut fixed overheads and permanent staff numbers, and instead turn to outsourcing business functions to more flexible freelance professionals.”

“OutsourceMyProject offers the perfect marketplace for freelancers and businesses to connect. Businesses looking to find a freelancer or outsource business functions simply advertise their project, which becomes visible to the thousands of freelancers registered on our site who then submit their proposals to win the work.”

Further figures released last week by the Office for National Statistics showed that unemployment has continued to increase, especially in the three months to November, where it reached a total of 2.7 million.

The UK’s unemployment rate stood at 8.4% of the economically active population by the start of November, up 0.3% during the quarter and the highest its been since 1995.

The number of jobless young people between the ages of 16 and 24 also hit another record high, with there now being over 1 million people in this age group out of work.

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Increasing interest in mobile app development

The New Year has already brought about a noticeable increase in companies exploring the world of mobile app development, which is becoming an ever increasing way businesses connect with their customers.

This growing popularity of smartphones, and Android devices in particular, is undeniable, with data released last week by US web analytics firm Chitika Analytics revealing that in North America Android devices overtook Apple iOS handsets when it came to mobile web browsing, and is therefore one of the most popular operating systems that people buy into.

Ever since the very first smartphone came into the marketplace, there has always been criticism over the lack of available apps. However, with the mobile app development industry growing and technology ever-advancing, more apps are being launched with every coming week. Companies are now being forced to wonder what benefits they can reap by launching their own app.

The amount of interest developers have had in relation to mobile apps over the last few months is also as a result of an increasing number of businesses investing in new tablet computers. A new survey has recently claimed that it is not just personal use which is fueling the tablet market, as more companies than ever before will invest in several tablet devices for their workplace during 2012.

According to the NPD Group, 73% of companies in America with less than 1,000 employees plan to buy tablet computers over the next few months, showing that it’s not only large organisations investing in such devices. A significant amount of companies have also spoken of their want to invest in iPads in particular.

Not only is this level of interest keeping developers who specialise in mobile app development busy, but it’s also creating a significant amount of additional jobs for freelance developers. This, coupled with the fact that more and more smartphones running the Android operating system are being launched, things look set to only get busier.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject, a marketplace helping UK customers find a freelancer (e.g. freelance web designers and freelance graphic designers), said: “We have witnessed a significant increase in the number of projects being posted on our outsourcing website by those wanting a mobile app for their business. Furthermore, there has been a similar increase in freelancers registering to offer their mobile app development services. This is certainly a growing market and a mobile app is something every business should be considering for the near future.”

With the workloads of app developers likely to increase throughout the year, it’s no surprise that both developers in this market are getting their very own industry body. The idea for a dedicated industry body is being led by Jon Potter, the former executive director of the Digital Media Association. According to a report by Info World, the aim is to establish an organization that can lobby on behalf of app developers, promoting their interests, while at the same time increasing collaboration, improving education and providing shared product-testing facilities.

Jon Potter, the former Executive Director of the Digital Media Association is leading the idea and said: “Our thought now is that there’s an interesting space in the application developer community that isn’t really organised. We’re going to be at the meetups all around the country, we’re going to be at conferences, we’re going to be talking to folks, we’re going to be polling people.”

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Is 2012 set to be a bumper year for outsourcing?

With the New Year upon us, many companies are now looking at their business processes in order to assess what they can change in 2012. With companies continuing to struggle amidst a challenging economic climate, many are likely to dramatically change how their company operates this year, with outsourcing likely to become the preserve of many businesses attempting to rationalise their cost base.

Last year was a record year for companies operating in the outsourcing sector, with a huge number of businesses looking into the concept in an attempt to cut fixed costs and become more flexible. With the ability to drastically reduce fixed overheads whilst maintaining business operations without interruption and providing access to skilled staff, outsourcing has been a lifesaver for many in 2011, which is why the new year is likely to bring a further uplift in demand for outsourcing services; not only in the UK but overseas too.

In a recent survey conducted by dictate2us, a dictation and transcription service, it was found that 62% of companies plan to outsource administrative jobs this year, to cut the costs of overheads. Chief Executive of dictate2us, Daryl Leigh said :“Many of the administrative tasks typically undertaken by secretaries are necessary but incredibly time consuming. For that reason, it’s important that business owners look objectively at their organisation to question whether outmoded methods of operation are still relevant.”

It is thought that the increased interest companies have in relation to outsourcing is due to the many small business that continue to struggle to find employees with the necessary skills. Research carried out by the Federation of small Businesses (FSB) found that 27% of start up companies struggle to find qualified and skilled staff.

Outsourcing was also a hot topic in the news last year, and this trend appears to continuing in 2012. In one article in particular, published in the Daily Mail, John Neilson, Managing Director of NHS Shared Business Services, has urged the NHS to outsource more of its call centres to India, to further cut costs; a predicted saving of £20 billion by 2014. With articles such as these featuring in various different publications on a daily basis, it is no wonder that more companies are wanting to know what is to be gained through outsourcing, with there being more of a demand for outsourcing companies than there has ever been before.

One outsourcing website in particular that has reaped the benefits of the increase in outsourcing is OutsourceMyProject. With over £1 million worth of projects posted onto the site in 2011, the business is looking forward to what 2012 brings. Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “Over the course of last year we witnessed a drastic increase in the number of small and SME companies looking to outsource their business functions to professional and freelance experts. Smaller businesses are now waking up to outsourcing, which historically has been viewed as the preserve of only large organizations. The principal benefits of outsourcing are twofold; cutting down fixed cost overheads and accessing skilled services which may not be available in-house.”

About OutsourceMyProject:
Established in January 2011, OutsourceMyProject.com aims to bring together organisations and individuals looking to outsource business functions or projects with freelance providers of professional services. Following the website launch, more than 10,000 providers, including freelance web designers, legal specialists, freelance editing professionals and copywriters have registered with OutsourceMyProject.com to bid on over £1 million worth of freelance work.

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Struggling Jobs Market Doesn’t Stop Entrepreneurs

Despite the challenging economic times entrepreneurs are helping to guide the UK economy through these difficult times, as both freelancers fight back against the high unemployment rates and new start up business look set to boost the national GDP significantly.

As a result of unemployment in the UK steadily increasing, as well as the number of unemployed people currently being the highest since 1994, research has shown that a significant amount of people are turning to freelance work, in an attempt to earn money – an increase of 12% since 2008. With the number of freelancers and new business owners on the rise, amidst a struggling jobs market, the strong business spirit is helping us all to avoid a future recession, and to make the very best of a bad situation.

In the current challenging economic environment, businesses are keen to reduce fixed costs costs, often by reducing the number of fixed staff they employ, and are instead employing freelancers. With freelancers working on flexible, short-term contracts, they are paid on a per work basis and are therefore not paid for the times when they aren’t needed, helping to minimise overheads.

This has of course shaken up the freelance industry, with a large amount of work available from many different companies. Whether it be a large retail company looking for a web designer to design and host their website, or an office based company needing a professional to undertake some administrative duties, it seems that outsourcing is the way to go about it, with more outsourcing websites setting up each month.

With many of the websites offering payment and project management platforms, as well as a whole host of other support, it’s a hassle-free way for those with the right skills to earn a sole income, or to supplement their income.

Many people who have been made redundant now seek work through outsourcing websites, in order to continue earning money during a challenging economic time. The amount of people freelancing in this way shows that they’re actively fighting the economic environment, and boosting the UK economy at the same time.

Furthermore, a recent survey has suggested that Britain’s newest start-up businesses are set to add hundreds of millions of pounds to the national economy next year, with outsourcing being the concept that looks set to continue leading the way. The survey, commissioned by T-Mobile and carried out by the Henley Business School, estimated that technologically-focused small businesses launched in 2011 could generated a combined £360m for the UK economy in 2012, generating somewhere in the region of 70,000 jobs.

Outsourcing websites have made it easy for freelancers, from freelance web designers to freelance graphic designers, to find work, whilst also providing businesses with a cheaper alternative in getting their workload and business functions completed. Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “OutsourceMyProject provides a useful service to freelancers and UK businesses. Our website connects freelance professionals with businesses looking to outsource their workload, and provides them with a platform to manage and complete their jobs. We’ve noticed that sign-ups to the site have increased rapidly over the past 12 months, which is undoubtedly a sign of strengthening freelance marketplace.”

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Private Firms Should Follow The Lead Of The Public Sector, Says OutsourceMyProject

Businesses in the private sector should follow the example set by an increasing number of public sector bodies and consider outsourcing.

That’s according to one of the UK’s leading outsourcing marketplaces, OutsourceMyProject.com, which says the number of organisations now looking at outsourcing in a bid to reduce their cost base is proof that bringing in the right external specialists can make a big difference.

IT services, finance, HR, payroll and logistics are all areas that are being outsourced by public sector organisations.

Loren Holland, managing director of OutsourceMyProject, said: “The large number of local councils and public organisations including police forces and fire services that have started outsourcing in recent months in a bid to reduce costs in the face of budget cuts shows how much of a difference the right professional services provider can make.

“At OutsourceMyProject.com we see first-hand how much companies are saving by enlisting the help of specialists. The fact that councils and other public bodies are making the same business decisions is further evidence of the crucial and growing role that specialists such as freelance web designers and freelance content writers play in helping businesses to remain competitive across a huge variety of sectors.”

The tender process for public contracts can often be extensive, with organisations spending many months ensuring they enter into a deal with the right partner. Loren said it is just as important for private businesses to make the right decision when it comes to choosing a professional services provider.

He said: “While most firms will not be dealing with 10-year contracts worth millions of pounds, it is still vital for the good of the company to ensure that the external specialist charged with completing a project is reliable and will finish everything on time and to the required standard. Posting a job through OutsourceMyProject ensures that you are always connected to the best freelancers in the business.

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OutsourceMyProject Breaks The £1million Barrier

OutsourceMyProject, a UK web based marketplace which allows businesses to outsource work and business functions to freelancers and professionals in the UK and aboard, has just broken a major barrier after having £1 million worth of projects posted on the website since its launch.

OutsourceMyProject launched at the start of 2011 and has already helped hundreds of entrepreneurs and small businesses find a freelancer in service categories such as web design, e-commerce, graphic design, copywriting and administrative support.

OutsourceMyProject is a marketplace which connects skilled professional freelancers and professional service providers with UK businesses seeking to use their services. The website can be used to find and work with a variety of experts from web designers to translators, graphic designers to accountants.

Customers simply post their job on the OutsourceMyProject website, which is completely free of charge, and then receive proposals from experts within hours. The site provides the platform to evaluate and manage service providers with concerns over ability and experience of providers being mitigated by the websites comprehensive feedback and rating system. Furthermore, OutsourceMyProject.com also provides a range of web-based tools to ensure confidence in the execution of your project. These include an online payment platform, project management facility and messaging system to ensure open and clear communication between both parties, all within the safety of the OutsourceMyProject.com website.

Loren Holland, Managing Director OutsourceMyProject said: “Breaking the £1 million barrier within a year of launching the website is a major achievement and one we are all very proud of. This achievement is testament to the value proposition OutsourceMyProject offers small and SME businesses and the strength of the UK freelancing and outsourcing markets at the present time.”

The concept of outsourcing and the use of freelancers to provide essential business services have proved to be a lifeline for many companies over recent years, and this looks set to continue as we face a double dip recession. These difficult economic times have made it more important than ever for companies to tighten their purse strings and streamline their operations. Rather than employ new staff on a full-time basis, specific projects can be completed by freelancers, with exactly the right skills and experience, on flexible contracts.

The number of freelancers registering with OutsourceMyProject has tripled over the past six months. The website attracts everyone from unemployed skilled professionals looking to earn a primary source of income to retired workers and students looking to supplement their income. The website is becoming an essential platform for the UK freelance market, helping them connect with businesses seeking their skills and expertise.

One early customer looking to find a freelance web designer on OutsourceMyProject was Manchester based Edge Worldwide Logistics. Director Philip Edge said: “We posted our job on OutsourceMyProject and received over 20 offers to redevelop our company website from specialists in the UK, India and other offshore locations, all at a significantly lower price than I had budgeted for.”

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How To Survive A Double Dip Recession

With a double dip recession looking likely, businesses are streamlining themselves more than ever before, in an attempt to ensure the struggling economy doesn’t cause the closure of their business.

Cutting everything from staff head counts to workloads, businesses are keen to reduce costs by re-thinking their everyday operations and processes. One example of the type of change being made by businesses is that they are reducing the number of fixed staff they employ, and are instead working with freelancers. With freelancers working on flexible, short-term contracts, they are paid on a per work basis and are therefore not paid for the times when they aren’t needed, helping to minimise overheads.

Delegating work to freelancers in this way is called outsourcing, whereby an outsider is used to provide the product or service needed by the company in question. There are many different business functions that can be outsourced to freelancers, including everything from a company’s finance and account functions, to web design and other IT functions. Outsourcing work enables companies to cut their fixed overheads, by replacing in-house teams with third party organisations and/or freelancers.

The recent economic climate has resulted in potentially the strongest freelance market ever, with many professionals offering their services on flexible contracts, as these skilled individuals look to gain or supplement their income after losing their permanent job, or having their income reduced during these difficult financial times. With today’s society facing such economic uncertainty, freelance work can provide both greater stability and flexibility than a full-time job can offer, which is just one of many reasons working in this way is as popular as it is.

OutsourceMyProject is an ideal site to find freelancers and professional service providers who are capable of undertaking projects and business functions. Furthermore, the site provides a platform to not only find, but also evaluate and manage service providers and projects. Concerns over ability and experience of providers are mitigated by the websites comprehensive feedback and rating system. OutsourceMyProject also provides users with a safe payment escrow service to provide maximum protection to its users.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “Outsourcing is an increasingly popular concept and the benefits have the capability to protect a business during the potential double dip recession. It is essential to operate a streamline business in the current economic environment whilst also maintaining access to skilled professionals who can sustain a business’s front and back office functions. ”

He went on to say: “OutsourceMyProject is a website that connects businesses with freelancers and professional companies looking to offer their services. Customers post their jobs free of charge and receive offers from experts within hours. If you need a freelance web designer or freelance copywriter, to name just a few specialist categories, then we have hundreds of experts waiting to provide their services through OutsourceMyProject, at the most competitive rates. Best of all, posting a job to find a freelancer to complete work is completely free with no hidden costs.”

One recent customer of OutsourceMyProject was Midlands based firm Stephen Gaskets Ltd, who posted their search engine optimization (SEO) project. Rex Baynton the Managing Director of Stephens Gaskets Ltd, said: “We posted our project on OutsourceMyProject and within a few days had received over 20 offers and had appointed a freelance SEO expert. After just a matter of weeks we witnessed a drastic increase in orders via Google, as a result of the excellent work completed by the freelancer we appointed.”

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OutsourceMyProject Continues To Provide Freelancers With Work

Several months after first launching, the outsourcing website, OutsourceMyProject, is continuing to provide freelancers with work. Enabling many different businesses to have their work completed by skilled individuals, the work costs significantly less than it would do when sourced from a high street company, which is why the concept has really taken off.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “My business partner and I launched OutsourceMyProject with an aim of providing a platform for UK businesses to engage with the UK freelance workforce, whilst also providing UK businesses with the opportunity to outsource their workload to freelancers abroad.”

He went on to say: “With more freelancers signing up to the website every day, whilst an increasing number of businesses are also posting jobs onto the site, it’s thankfully going from strength to strength. At a time where unemployment rates are continually rising, OutsourceMyProject is the ideal marketplace for unemployed UK workers to not only offer their services, but to be able to put their skills to use and be paid for it too.”

With shocking figures released today by the BBC, a record 1 in 5 people under the age of 24 are currently unemployed. Clearly backing the concept of outsourcing, and more specifically backing the purpose of outsourcing websites such as OutsourceMyProject, now is a great time for people out of work to be able to make money from home.

With a jobless rate of 8.3%, and a figure from October 2011 announcing that 1.6 million people are now claiming jobseeker’s allowance, the unemployment rate is the highest since 1996, whilst the total number of those who are unemployed is the highest since 1994.

To date, the concept of outsourcing professional services has been limited to large companies and organisations. However, OutsourceMyProject is a website that enables small and medium sized businesses, as well as entrepreneurs and individuals to be able to successfully find a freelancer and outsource business abroad.

Helping businesses to work within their ever-tightening budgets, OutsourceMyProject is a concept whereby significant cost savings are generated. This is most commonly through the outsourcing of work to low cost economies that have a highly talented skill base, such as various information technology roles and back office support roles to countries like India.

Freelancers firstly sign up to OutsourceMyProject, upon which they are then able to create a freelance profile and use the fair and transparent bidding process to secure the work that appeals to them, such as opportunities to become a freelance logo designer or as freelance graphic designers. With companies able to cherry pick the exact talent they’re looking for, and consequently choosing the freelancer they feel can carry out the job to the required standard, it’s a great way to build up strong working relationships, and is a concept that encourages competitive bidding from both UK and global providers.

With any cost saving method being essential in combating the ever-struggling economic climate in today’s society, it seems that outsourcing is an ideal concept not only for thriving businesses facing budget cuts, but also for companies who simply wouldn’t be able to survive without these savings in place.

OutsourceMyProject provides a sought-after service that helps UK businesses to cut fixed employment overheads whilst also cutting the costs of service providers too. For example, sourcing a competent web designer on OutsourceMyProject is considerably cheaper than sourcing someone at the same level from a high street company.

Thanks to the concept of outsourcing, the freelance jobs workforce is growing, with the possibility of working from home and making a living for yourself being much more of a reality today than it has ever been before. With the digital world growing too, as well as the increasing capabilities of technology continuing to pleasantly surprise us, perhaps this is the way of the future and something we will see a lot more of over the next year or so.

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OutsourceMyProject Gives Its Backing To National Freelancers Day

OutsourceMyProject.com, the UK’s leading outsourcing marketplace, has given its support to National Freelancers Day which takes place tomorrow (23).

The event, which is being held for the third year running, is designed to celebrate the strength of the freelance sector in the UK and promote the use of freelancers by companies of all sizes, specifically with regard to how they can help businesses through the current tough financial environment.

National Freelancers Day has been organised by PCG, a group which champions freelancers, contractors and consultants across Britain. To celebrate the event, PCG has organised for a number of webinars to take place throughout the day aimed at helping experienced and novice freelancers alike. Setting up an effective business framework, finding and winning work, self-promotion and understanding opportunities and threats are all topics that will come under the microscope.

Loren Holland, managing director of OutsourceMyProject, said: “Highlighting the role that independent workers play within the UK economy is a great thing and the more that can be done to promote the work of specialists such as freelance web designers the better.

“Experience running OutsourceMyProject has shown us that more and more companies are recognising the benefits of working with freelancers, especially in the current financial climate when having access a wide range of skill sets without having to shoulder the cost of employing specialists on a full-time basis can really make a huge difference.”

Events are being organised to celebrate the day and promote freelancing around the UK and OutsourceMyProject has called on those working independently to get involved, share their experiences of freelancing and help to make the community stronger.

Loren added: “We’d urge all freelancers, whether they’ve been involved in the sector for five minutes or 50 years to take part in National Freelancers Day and if possible, attend an event in their area.”

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Freelance Workers Are On The Increase

With an increasing number of companies struggling and having to make staff redundant and put recruitment on hold, it’s no surprise that more people are choosing to become freelancers, and that outsourcing the services they offer are in demand now more than ever before.

Simon DeGale is a freelance web designer who uses outsourcing marketplaces to source work. After leaving his full-time job in London to become a freelance web designer, Simon has never looked back. Not only does he now have an ideal work/life balance, but he also gets to spend time with his two young daughters; something he wasn’t able to do as much whilst working in London. Working in the freelance industry has also allowed him to take charge of his own workload and to secure exactly the type of work he wants to be doing.

One particular website Simon DeGale uses is OutsourceMyProject, a UK based platform that offers various different professional services within a freelance marketplace. To date the concept of outsourcing professional services has been limited to large companies and organisations, but OutsourceMyProject enables both small and medium businesses, as well as entrepreneurs and individuals to successfully outsource business both home and abroad.

OutsourceMyProject helps businesses decrease their costs significantly, through outsourcing work to freelancers and/or low cost economies that have highly talented skill bases. OutsourceMyProject works by offering both a transparent and competitive bidding process on each project, which results in competitive bidding from UK and global service providers.

With any savings that can be made being a lifeline for many companies at the moment, outsourcing is the ideal concept to use to make such savings. Companies and individuals that use OutsourceMyProject can perform their due diligence on each service provider by viewing each their unique profile and portfolio, along with analysing their ratings and feedback for past projects. With complete freedom and flexibility in customers appointing their preferred professionals, both parties are able to work on agreed terms.

With improved communication and technology making this type of work arrangement possible, freelancers are able to improve their offering. Last month’s employer survey by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), JobsOutlook, revealed that the UK economy has discouraged permanent employment, leading more business owners to seek freelance, contract and temporary workers instead.

According to the report, 83% of employers said that their use of temporary workers will rise or remain the same during the next year, whilst four out of five of them said this will happen within the next three months. Only 49% said they expect to add to their permanent workforce within the next 12 months, and this is compared to 66% in the previous month. However, short-term permanent recruitment expectations currently stand at 67%, compared to 74% previously.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject said: “These figures show that employers are waking up to the wealth of flexible human resources available to them. Rather than take on new staff on a long-term or full-time basis, specific projects can be completed by sourcing people with exactly the right skills and experience for each task. Whether a business is large or small, or even if someone working alone is looking for one-off assistance with a particular project, it’s possible to find a freelancer to offer invaluable support.”

A report published at the end of 2009 by Enterprise Nation, in association with British Telecom, found there were more than 2.8 million businesses operating full time from home in the UK, which represents a 16% increase from the prior year. Furthermore, home businesses contribute around £284 billion to the annual UK economy. Technology was cited as a key factor in enabling people to start and grow a business from home, with 81% of the Enterprise Nation survey respondents stating that technology is critical to the success of their home business.

These improvements in internet access have lead to a dramatic increase in the number of company employees working from home. Businesses are more flexible to staff working from home given the improvements in technology and business tools which give staff full access to servers and files from their home, such as cloud computing and drop box application.

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Invest In A Mobile App And See Your Company Grow

With recent research conducted by Acquity Group showing that one in four retailers now have a mobile app, it seems that businesses are keen to reach a new mobile audience.

There are many benefits to be reaped by companies with mobile apps, mainly due to the fact that almost everyone owns a mobile phone these days. With companies increasingly using mobile apps and processes in their everyday working lives, time is saved whilst performance is improved too. Other benefits include increased efficiency in terms of communication; the ability to download the same everyday applications that are on desktop PC’s; constant internet access; and quick completion of tasks.

Mobile phones have made it possible to talk, text, email, watch television, watch films, and listen to music, no matter where in the world we are. Through businesses investing in mobile apps, work can therefore be conducted wherever we are, with there being no need to be in the office to carry out a simple task, such as reading emails.

Today we are hearing of more and more businesses that have developed apps. Giving employees the opportunity to access any of their work regardless of where they are, companies are therefore increasing their employees’ productivity as a result.

With some companies developing a mobile app, or in some cases paying for a mobile app to be developed, they are most commonly either an app of the actual business, or an app that will help the business to grow and be successful. As a great way to promote a company, mobile apps will only get better, as in months to come it may be possible for additional services to be sold through them.

A company that’s recently invested in a mobile app is the financial services firm Prudential. After launching new mobile tools in a bid to make it simpler for clients and business partners to access the company’s products and services, Prudential is definitely tapping into the previously unknown world of mobile apps. Not only that but Prudential Retirement, part of the Prudential Financial group, has unveiled a new website optimised for mobiles, which will allow account access to 2.5 million of its retirement plan participants whilst they’re on the move. In addition to this, the company has also invested in a retirement income calculator app for smartphones, which has been designed to allow users to calculate their estimated monthly retirement income, as well as their estimated monthly retirement income need.

The fact that mobile app development is becoming popular all over the world makes it easy for mobile app freelancers to secure work. Not only is app development a task that requires the knowledge of someone highly skilled within that particular area of development, but it’s also a task that’s costly and therefore needs to be completed correctly first time around. The opportunity for a mobile app developer to pick up work is great for those working in the freelance industry; with many freelancers often signed up to various different outsourcing websites in order to secure such work, as well as to ensure they’re contacted by those who want to make use of their skills.

OutsourceMyProject is an example of an outsourcing website that has many skilled people signed up to it, from freelance web designers to freelancer programmers. As a UK based platform that’s been created to open up the global market place for professional services across a wide range of sectors, OutsourceMyProject helps businesses and those in the self employed industry to decrease their costs significantly. A freelance mobile app developer, for example, can be found to complete work within a specified budget, without the need for companies having to compromise on the quality of work delivered.

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UK Business Turning To Freelancers To Survive Challenging Economic Times

In what’s undoubtedly a tough economic climate for many UK businesses, an increasing number are turning to the skills of freelancers in an attempt to stay afloat during these challenging times. With the services of freelancers helping businesses to not only continue to get their jobs done, but to reduce their fixed overheads at the same time, the workloads of many freelancers continue to increase, as more companies start to realise exactly how outsourcing can help their company.

As a result of the freelance market being stronger than ever before, both in terms of supply and demand, freelancers are increasingly giving businesses other options, such as a being flexible alternatives to the permanent staff they’ve always had. With freelancer web designers and freelance translators, for example, completing work within the desired time, and in many cases ahead of schedule, the appeal of freelancers is clear, especially when their prices are often a lot cheaper than those quoted by high street companies. With businesses being able to save money whilst also getting the job done and without having to sacrifice the quality of it, outsourcing is a win-win situation for all involved.

A recent survey has shown that 66% of companies who took part in it said they were more likely to start outsourcing their work during difficult economic times. This is, of course, great news for freelancers, as being in this role can also bring its fair share of difficulties too, such as work not being guaranteed. With freelancers often being essential to start up businesses who need access to affordable, flexible specialists, the outsourcing market is growing constantly.

Loren Holland, Managing Director of OutsourceMyProject, an up-and-coming online freelance outsourcing company said: “With significant savings to be made through outsourcing work to freelancers, it’s no surprise that an increasing number of UK businesses are choosing to have their workloads completed in this way. Savings are commonly made by outsourcing work to low cost economies that have highly skilled workers, such as India, as an impressive amount of money can be saved yet the job is carried out just as well.”

Loren Holland went on to say: “OutsourceMyProject is a UK based platform, which has been created in order to open up the global market place for professional services, across a wide range of sectors. Outsource My Project enables small and medium sized businesses, entrepreneurs and individuals to successfully outsource business within the UK and abroad, whilst also helping self employed individuals to secure work. With the transparent bidding process of many outsourcing sites meaning that businesses are free to pick and choose the type of freelancer they want for the job, the concept is appealing to say the least.

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