Freelancing has been around for many years and has been wildly successful in developed countries and also among some smart and savvy Nigerians who caught the freelancing bug earlier on. You would often hear of success stories such as Simon Carter and his girlfriend, Emily of GreenBox designs who joined Elance, and due to their hard work, they have grown their freelancing careers which have afforded them the time and finances to travel to Thailand, Spain, Indonesia and South Africa. A fine second example would be Brandon Cowan who is the 19-year-old mobile app entrepreneur who founded Crazy Dog Apps and lives in Australia. He created hit mobile apps like iParkHere and routinely uses freelance platforms to find mobile app developers for his company.
However, in Nigeria, not much has been achieved in the field of freelancing, and there are a few reasons why our freelance economy isn’t yet developed. One of such reasons is that we are yet to recognize the potential that lies in the freelance world. Quite a few people have tried but failed to create an enduring freelance platform that caters to the needs of Nigerians and indeed Africans. It’s our mission to change that. Find below an infographic showing the countries with the top users of freelance services. There seems to be a huge opportunity in the countries with gray areas.
So what is freelancing or who is a freelancer?
A freelancer is a person who isn’t committed to any employer in the long term and chooses to be self-employed but provides services to people who are willing to pay for it by the hour, day or per job instead of working a 9-to-5 job for a salary.
This perhaps explains the difference between WOK and Jobberman or NaijaHotjobs etc. We don’t deal with 9-to-5 salary paying jobs, but we allow freelancers who are willing to work from anywhere, including their homes, offices, cybercafés, campuses, hotels, classrooms, dormitories or hostels, cars, coffee shops in fact anywhere there is a computer and internet access. The most popular categories usually include writing, designs, web based services, programming, jingles production, and music production etc.
Why Choose the Name “WOK”?
As we all know, there a popular adage that says “Charity begins at Home”. Wok is a word we coined from the Nigerian Pidgin English which means Work. Wok can be used as a noun e.g. “I no sale any wok today” or as a verb e.g. “oga give me wok, I go wok am for you”. The name was chosen because its easily relatable and its understood by all.
How safe is this website?
Safety has been the bedrock of our initiative, right form project development to launch. We are using the latest and strongest data encryption technology same as those used in bank websites to protect user data. It can be seen as a green padlock in the address bar.
There are strategic feedback systems which connects freelancers, buyers and website engineers including ability of users to flag and/or report suspicious activity on the website.
We built a trust rating system that allows the buyer to select freelancers based on their ratings, form the lowest 1 star to the highest 5 stars, so if you find a 5 star freelancer, you will be more than sure the freelancer has satisfied customers in the past, and can satisfy you too.
How to join the team of “Wokrs”
It’s very easy, you just need to register on http://wok.com.ng and verify your email address. Wok notifications will be sent to your email when a buyer places and order so It’s important to use your most frequently used email address. In order to be successful you should make your work a very personal experience.
Then Whats next?
- You should update your profile. Because it speaks volumes about you, your biography, your profile picture should be bright and clear. It give the clients a good first impression about your personality.
- Don’t be afraid to take a leap. Starting is very important and how best to do so can even be overwhelming to some people. Don’t expect too much at the start because the website has limited maximum job prices to 5,000 NGN this is to prevent scammers and spamming. It will also allow users to learn from their experience, to start small, learn and grow gradually. If your job should cost a lot, consider breaking the job into several segments and billing them separately, e.g., if the total cost of your service should be 20,000 NGN, consider breaking it into segments of 5,000 NGN each and posting them as separate jobs.
- Be ready to work Hard. Rome wasn’t built in a day, this isn’t a “get rich quick scheme”. Your success on WOK or any other freelance platform depends entirely on the freelancer. Your work has to meet certain standards and you will have to work within an acceptable deadline once contracted. Meeting a given deadline will go a long way to drive you on the wheels of success.
Feel free to contact Wok Nigeria Team on firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about the service.