With the unemployment rate hitting an all-time high, Kenya has been experiencing a situation whereby nearly one youth out of five are jobless. According to a report by World Bank in 2016, it was estimated that 17.4% of the Kenyan youth are unemployed.
This has led to many youths turning to the internet in search for jobs from clients in the world over. The probability of having online jobs commonly known as online freelancing has enabled many youths to have alternative ways of putting food on their table. With the dwindling job opportunities, online freelancing is becoming a serious income earner for the Kenyan youth. All you need to become a freelancer is a computer, internet connection and most importantly the willingness to work.
Recent report by the World Bank also revealed that a gross revenue of about $2 billion in 2013 was generated from online outsourcing. The report went further to project that online outsourcing was to hit a $4 billion worth in 2016. Kenya and South Africa being the continental leaders.
Online outsourcing can be described as the process through which a company contracts third-party provider who are often overseas in the supply of services or products which are generally delivered and paid for through the internet. Many opportunities have been opened up and now freelancers can access and compete in the global markets.
Some of the various jobs that outsourcing companies can avail to freelancers include;
- Web Content Writing/Development
Companies and organisations all over the world are outsourcing for web developers. They are mainly responsible for creating programming codes and they are also responsible for search engine optimization (SEO). The key to driving traffic to particular websites heavily relies on the web articles written by online writers.
- Online Marketing
The fact that online marketing is much less costly and effective as compared to the traditional forms of marketing has seen it gain pace in the recent past. Online marketers are tasked with the responsibility of promoting and advertising products and services offered by companies via the internet.
- Freelance Writing
It is one of the most notable form of writing done by a majority of college and university graduates in Kenya. It can be in the form of academic papers such as dissertations, thesis, research articles and essays.
Online outsourcing has several advantages;
- Operational and recruitment costs are greatly minimized as outsourcing eludes the need to hire in-house individuals.
- A company gets more or adequate time to strengthen its core business process through the outsourcing of supporting processes.
- Considering that tasks are mostly outsourced to specialized vendors in the field, this ensures that tasks are done efficiently. More so, these vendors also have specific equipment and technical skills which gives a guarantee that tasks are not only completed faster but they also have better quality output.
Freelancing offers alot of flexibility and freedom as compared to regular desk jobs. This is because, a freelancer gets to choose who he collaborates with, type of work to be done, time of day to work, location, how long to work and also the volume of work to take on. This helps an individual to make choices that suits his needs and strengths.
As a result of all this flexibility, there are a lot of benefits that come with being a freelancer;
Breaks: Freelancers have the advantage of taking breaks and naps whenever they need to. Good sleep has been attributed to the overall health of a person. According to research, taking small breaks can actually sustain concentration and helps keep energy levels up all the day long.
Control; The biggest advantage of being a freelancer is the fact that one gets a chance to say when enough is enough. According to a research from Kansas State University, it has been found that most employees who work for more than 50 hours per week, suffer from decreased physical and mental health. Having control over your workload can be beneficial to your health.
Relationships; A freelancer gets to decide how much he wants to communicate with colleagues and clients in a day. This helps them to keep a policy of not checking their email constantly. A study by the University of British Columbia found out that stress can be greatly reduced by less checking of the mails.
Own Boss; Being your own boss can help you avoid the stress that comes from working for or with a difficult person. If a client is difficult, a freelancer can always drop them. Working for a difficult person can have negative effects such as sleep problems, depression, weight issues and high blood pressure.
Long Commute; The fact that most freelancers work from their homes makes freelancing great not only for time management but for better health as well. According to one study, the lowest levels of life satisfaction was attributed to most people who commute by bus for 30 minutes.
Online freelancing and Outsourcing is literally taking over the kenyan job market. Many people are not only taking online jobs but are also running online stores and businesses. Some of the key benefits of online work in Kenya include;
Family Time; since one can comfortably work from home, there is more time to spend with loved ones. This eventually strengthens the bond between family members leading to happy, healthy families.
From Home; with online jobs, one can actually work from their bedroom. Dressing up and leaving your house to meet a client is not necessary. No physical location for the office is required. All that is needed is just a computer or a smartphone and an internet connection.
Cheap; starting online work is easy. An online business will only require a few things to get it going. Money for renting out space is not required and also you do not need to possess a certificate.
Customers; the potential of growing an online business is much higher since working online brings you closer to large numbers of customers. This leads to huge profits. Unlike a physical shop that attracts only customers around its location, online shops attract millions of users from all over the world.
Based on the above benefits of online work, it is evident that online jobs is the way to go in curbing the increased rate of unemployment in Kenya.
Feel free to get more insights into freelancing from this deeply insightful and futuristic article https://www.toptal.com/insights/future-of-work/millionaire-freelancing-career