Are you tired of constantly scrambling to find a job or working for minimum wage because of a past felony conviction?
Its time to think outside the box and tap into a HUGE market of ONLINE FREELANCE job opportunities.
There are literally thousands of online jobs available in a wide range of industries, requiring different skills, and educational backgrounds.
Best of all: THERE IS NO BACKGROUND CHECK, so your felony will not be an obstacle to employment.
In freelancing – your “salary” mostly depends on your skills and attitude, and having a felony conviction does not stop you from being a successful online freelancer! This is simply because “employers” don’t ask you if you are a felon – all they care about is that you deliver good product, and charge reasonable rates for your work!
If you have never considered becoming an online freelancer, here is a quick rundown of benefits as well as a guide on how to get started.
If working for yourself – when you want and doing what you want is not appealing to you, you can also check out other jobs for felons, and companies that hire them.
What type of jobs can freelance felons do:
For the most part freelance jobs are those that you can do remotely, online, on your computer (so you need a PC/Mac and internet connection). Majority of these jobs are programming / web design / graphics design AND writing / web marketing, etc. But you can also be a virtual assistant and perform any different tasks, that don’t require you physical presence.
Don’t get scared though if you can’t program or do graphics or write well. It is EASY to learn – check out our Freelancer Skills section.
Note – I learned programming at a community college, when I was 33 and had my second kid on the way. But now I learn all new skills online, with video courses. There are many college degrees that felons can learn and use!
Benefits of online freelance jobs
No Background Check Required!!!
No Employment Interview Required: simply create an online profile on freelance sites of your choice, apply/bid for jobs and have employers contact you. You will of course have to convince “employers” to choose you over other freelancers, but here you are on even grounds with people without felonies.
Higher Salaries: most skilled online jobs pay between $15-25+/hr or more (depending on the job, and level of skill required, and how fast you work). Some freelancers charge as much as $30-50/hr or by the project, which means if project is $750 and you complete it in 20 hours – you make $37.50/hr. Now if it takes you only 10 hours to do the job … do the math!
This beats working for or below minimum wage, and being afraid that any day you’ll get fired because of your felony.
Work Remotely: you can work from anywhere in the world, all you need is a laptop or computer and access to the internet. If you do not have internet at home, you can work in a local library (most offer free internet access)
Flexible Payment Plans: you can look for jobs that pay on an hourly basis, or upon completion of a project.
No limit to the Number of Jobs: you can try to get as many jobs/projects as you think you can handle at one time. There is no limit, as long as you are meeting deadlines of the projects you signed up to complete.
No Prior Experience Necessary: many jobs are entry-level and don’t require you to have years of prior experience.
No References Needed: no one is going to ask for your references. You will be considered based on the skills you list on your profile, as well as samples of your work (more on that later).
You Can Still Have a Regular Job: while you are just trying out being a freelancer, you don’t have to quit a job (if you have one). In the beginning, you may only get to work a few hours a week, but if you are persistent, continue to improve in your skills, and get positive reviews for your work, freelancing can become your main source of income.
You Can Make it BIG! If you become really good at a particular skill that is in high demand, for example, coding, and establish yourself as an expert on one or more of the freelance platforms you can make well over $100,000 a year, all from the comfort of your own home. You will be your own boss, with total control of your finances, and you will never again have to be rejected from a job for having a felony.
What Skills Are In the Highest Demand Online?
Here are the top skills that are in great demand in the online world (there are a lot more skills in demand than on this list):
If you don’t have these skills, I provide links to where you can learn them on Udemy (online video learning). Udemy often has sales on many courses, so you can pick them up for $15+ and it is actually pretty easy to follow and learn new skill!
Coding: PHP, HTML, WordPress, etc
Web Development & Design
Rob is one of my favorite instructors on Udemy (I took 3 of his courses, and they are outstanding).
Writing / blogging
Graphic Design/Logo Design
Mobile Phones: coding and design for apps on iPhone and Android
Internet marketing/Social Media Marketing
Don’t see your desired skill? Search 1000s of different video courses on Udemy – many costing $15 for the entire course with lifetime access!
I have taken over a dozen courses there, and am now working on my own course (yes I will be TEACHING on Udemy).
Want to Become a Freelancer but Don’t Have the Skills?
You may be sitting there, thinking: “This sounds like a great idea, I want to try this, but I don’t really have any useful skills, so this path is not for me”. This is NOT true. If you currently don’t have any skills that would be in high demand, you can go to college (it’s easy to get financial aid and scholarships for felons) or LEARN them yourself online!
And, no we are not suggesting that you get a college degree, go to a vocational or technical school. All these paths are nice, but they take way too long, and are often way too expensive.
There is another quick and very inexpensive way to learn pretty much any skill or professional field that interests you. You can do this by taking online courses at Udemy. There are courses in web development and design, 3D modeling, marketing, data analysis, statistics, entrepreneurship, etc.
These courses are usually inexpensive, easy to understand (they are written by pros), packed with practical knowledge as opposed to bull shit, and you can learn at your own pace. Once you download a course, you can listen to it as many times as you want.
How to Get Started on Becoming a Freelancer Online?
Getting your first online job as a freelancer may be easier and faster than you think. Here are the steps that you need to take (once you have needed skills):
Get familiar with the world of online freelancing: take a look at the top platforms, such as Guru.com and Upwork.com (also known as Odesk/Elance). Browse the jobs that are posted, what skills are required, what the pay is, how long the project takes, etc.
Sign up: create a profile on 2-3 of the top platforms (see the list at the end of this post). Creating a strong profile will be the key to getting work. We strongly recommend to first look at a profiles of other freelancers with similar skills (in a job category that you want to target), who have many completed jobs and good reviews. Take a look at what they write about themselves, what skills they list, what type of work samples they provide. Your goal is to create a similar profile for yourself.
Upload work samples: having samples of your work is critical to getting hired. This is what prospective employers look at when they evaluate different candidates. If you don’t have any work samples, such as graphic or logo designs, writing or coding samples, take time and create 3-4 samples. Again, take a look at the work samples on other people’s profiles and use them as a guide to create your own.
Start looking for work: once you complete your profile, websites like Upwork will actually deliver current job postings that match your skills. Additionally, you should search for jobs yourself through a websites search engine, and apply. We recommend to apply to as many jobs as possible to increase your chances of landing a project.
Be persistent: just like in the real world, you will face stiff competition. There are thousands of people who are also looking for online work. However, in the online world, you have the great benefit of a level playing field: no one will turn you away because of your conviction. All that matters is your skills and ability to do good work in a timely fashion.
Have a routine: regularly check for new job postings.
Be Prompt: respond to emails from potential employers right away. As mentioned before, if you are not on top of it, someone else will grab the job from right under your nose.
Experiment with your profile: if after 2-3 weeks of persistent efforts you still have not landed a project, try editing your profile. Perhaps add or delete skills, change your intro, etc. Many local libraries and community centers offer help with resumes. This is your online resume, so ask for help writing and editing it.
Remember, becoming an online freelancer is NOT a get rich quick scheme. The internet is full of fake ads for how to become a millionaire without actually working. STAY AWAY from them!
Top freelance platforms will give you access to good pay and real work. This means you have to try really hard, do your best work, and in return, make a decent living.
Once again – being a freelance felon is much better than being a Wal-Mart felon and constantly worrying if you will get the pink slip today, because of your conviction.
There are NO BACKGROUND checks for 99% of freelance jobs!
You can make much better money and work when and where you want. You just have to be good at what you do. And if you don’t have the skills – you can learn them cheaply and fast.
So stop kicking doors at $10/hr companies and being rejected because of your felony – start working for yourself – become a freelancer!