An Interview with a Pakistani Freelancer- Ehtesham Hameed

Tell us about yourself?

Ehtesham Hameed: I have done Bachelors in Software Engineering from COMSATS Abbottabad in 2016.

When did you start freelancing?

Ehtesham Hameed: I was introduced with the Freelancing world for the first time in KPYEP Freelancing program at COMSATS in 2016. After graduation, I started to elongate my wings towards self-dependency, so I started work as a Freelancer at Upwork because I was so moved with the success stories all around.

Are you a full time freelancer or you do freelancing beside your job as part time?

Ehtesham Hameed: Mixture of both as I’m working as a writer/web developer for 3 freelancers on monthly basis, therefore, I am unable to provide proper time to Upwork in these days.

Which Online Marketplace (Peopleperhour, Upwork, Freelancer, fiverr) you use and which one you will recommend?

Ehtesham Hameed: Upwork. I will recommend Upwork

What kind of work you do online?

  • Web development (PHP, CSS3, HTML, JavaScript)
  • Database Designing
  • Academic writing
  • Content writing.

How many jobs/projects you have completed online so far?

Ehtesham Hameed: On Upwork, I have completed three projects with 5 stars rating. Among three, I got 2 projects there from one client. He was so elated with my quality work that he hired me on monthly basis. So far, through social media (Outsourcing), I have completed 70 projects.

When did you get your first project online and what was your reaction?

Ehtesham Hameed: I got my first job at Upwork in September 2016 and I was too elated with that.

How many hours you work in a day and does this affect your social life as well?

Ehtesham Hameed: I work 8-10 hours a day and yes it has affected my social life to certain extent.

Your best and worst experience working as a freelancer?

Ehtesham Hameed: So many best experiences I would say. Those moments were so cherishing when my three top clients offered me a job to work on permanent basis because they were too overwhelmed with my top-rated work. The other best experience is that I got gem of people in the freelancing world, which is marvelous learning experience. Unfortunately, I had one bad experience. I got an offer from one client through Facebook group about writing an essay of (1500 words). I did that essay as per client’s requirements. He accepted my work but he blocked me from Facebook and didn’t pay.

What kind of advice would you like to give to people interested in Freelancing?

Ehtesham Hameed:

  • First develop your skills, polish them, and then start earn through freelancing
  • If you want to be flourished, then be sincere to your own self
  • Be professional and honest.

What do you think are the pros/cons of freelancing?

Ehtesham Hameed: To be honest, this is quite interesting to discuss because freelancing completely changes the daily routine and life-style.

Pros

  • Self-dependency. You can enjoy various perks of the life with your own money
  • Enhances professionalism
  • You are boss of your own self. You can work as per your own will.
  • Guaranteed payments in case of freelancing platforms

Cons

  • No social life.
  • Creates health issues like obesity because of less sleep, intense work load and tight deadlines

It is very difficult to get your first project online so would you like to share any tips/tricks to get your first project online?

Yes, I had this experience and its indeed difficult to grasp first project at Upwork or any other freelancing platform. I still remember of my early days that were so frustrating. Although I tried my best to put my best foot forward for various projects at Upwork, but all in vain. I didn’t give up, and finally after mammoth endeavor, I got my first project at Upwork, So I would like to share certain tips to avail first online project

  • Always bid low in early projects.
  • Saturday and Sunday nights are so important for bidding. Do maximum bidding in these two as much you can because software houses usually don’t bid in these two days due to holidays.
  • Cover letter should be well-focused and powerful. If your cover letter appeals the client, then its 90% chance that client will allot you project

Other Tips to be a successful freelancer

I would like to share certain tips to get into the list of successful freelancers

Upwork Tips

  • Be focused.
  • Your Upwork’s profile should be unambiguous, neat and clean.
  • Keep on applying for concerned projects especially at night because mostly clients are foreigners.
  • Always read the instructions of the client in aptly manner. The cover letter should reflect client’s needs. Don’t copy paste cover letter from the internet.
  • Install smartphone application of Upwork or any Freelancing platform that will help you out in instant replies.
  • Strong communication skills.

Social Media Tips

  • Create proper CV/Resume
  • Join all the groups named “Pakistan Freelancers” on Facebook and apply for concerned tasks/projects.
  • Be professional. You are supposed to inbox client with certain details that how will you do that job and show him/her that you are the best person for his/her project. It is more like cover letter. Don’t forget to send resume and samples along with cover letter. You can use your assignments as your SAMPLES.
  • You are ambassador of your own brand. So do not beg for the job. Trust in your abilities.
  • If you want to progress in Academic writing, then learn referencing. For referencing, install Endnote X5 and see its various tutorials on YouTube.
  • Before taking any project on social media via Freelancing groups, make sure to check concerned person’s profile. There are too many scammers there.
  • Freelancing is unstable. Sometimes you have plethora of projects and sometimes you can’t find a single project/task for weeks.

Hire Ehtesham Hameed on Upwork. If you want your story to be published here you can inbox us at write (@)outsourcepk.com

Youth Employment Program

Institute of Management Sciences Peshawar in collaboration with KP IT Board will provide four weeks of free training on “Freelancing”. The training will include setting up accounts on different marketplaces such as fivver, peopleperhour, upwork, applying for jobs/projects, setting up payment methods and a lot more.

Procedure

  • Fill and submit the form.
  • Wait for the E-Mail.
  • Appear for the interview.

You will be notified the date of the interview through E-Mail.

Requirements

  • KP Domicile
  • Good Communication Skills (Written/Spoken English)
  • Female students are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Existing Freelancers are welcome to take their skills to the next level.

This training will be conducted in 7 divisions of KPK which are Peshawar, Mardan, Malakand, DI Khan, Bannu, Kohat & Hazara

For Registration visit http://www.youthemp.com/registration/

NXTGEN 2016

NXTGENabNXTGEN 2016 will be held from April 04-30, 2016 and it is being organized by Peshawar 2.0 (peshawar2.org). Peshawar2.0 has created a PKR 1 Million Scholarship Fund to provide accelerated education to Ten (10) aspiring Designers, Coders and Artists in NXTGEN 2016. NXTGEN (Next Generation) is a movement of young people. NXTGEN is designed as an accelerated and hands-on learning initiative for inspiring and educating our future techies, designers, artists and entrepreneurs in Peshawar2.0.

In 2015, more than 100 enthusiastic and passionate techies, designers and artists attended NXTGEN sprints and workshops at Basecamp. 70 individuals from 15 campuses in KPK were given scholarships, who received accelerated education in the areas of Technology, Design, Art, Communication, and Entrepreneurship.

Workshops and Sprints of NXTGEN

  • Dress Up Your CV
  • Learn the Art of Pencil Sketching
  • Learn to Code iOS Apps
  • Learn the Art of Public Speaking & Presentation Skills
  • Master the Basics of Adobe Photoshop
  • Build a Million-Dollar Android App
  • How to Become a Better Photographer
  • Arduino: Hands-On Introduction with Projects
  • Learn How to Earn with Freelancing
  • Biology going Digital: What is Bioinformatics & Computational Biology?
  • Master the Basics of Adobe Illustrator
  • Become a Rockstar Social Media Marketer
  • Learn the Basics of Search Engine Optimization
  • WordPress: Design Websites in 2 Hours
  • Introduction to the Art of Calligraphy
  • Create & Animate Stop Motion Videos
  • Paint What you See: Introduction to Digital Painting
  • Convert you Idea into a Startup
  • Learn the Basics of Fashion Illustration

P2 Scholarship Fund Application Form (Deadline: 30th March 2016, 10:00 pm PST)

http://goo.gl/forms/ruogygQlUw

Calendar

http://bit.ly/1T2VAFf

Tickets

http://goo.gl/forms/iYNWQatAyk

NXTGEN Booklet

http://bit.ly/1pVn702

 

PAK-CHINA Business Forum 2016

COMSATS Institute of Information Technology is organizing this program to promote University  & Industry collaborations in business and economic sectors for the mutual benefit of both the countries.

After the success of four consecutive Pak-China Business Forums in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, the forum is scheduled to be held from 19th to 22nd March 2016.

More details of this forum are available at http://lahore.comsats.edu.pk/pcbf2016/ 

KP Apps Challenge 2016

KP_apps“Participate in KP Apps Challenge 2016 – brought to you by The World Bank, KPITB & Tech Valley”

Calling all KP youth, techies, designers, entrepreneurs, and civic-minded geeks!

KPApps is an “online hackathon” that gives you the opportunity to create mobile and web applications, websites, or any other tech tool under these basic themes:

1) Civic Participation
2) Governance
3) Health
4) Education

Make an app, website or web application and win cash prizes upto Rs, 600,000/- Also winners will get a chance to meet potential investors, mentors and can be incubated in Civic Innovation lab

For more details about eligibility and judging Criteria,  visit: http://kpapps.devpost.com

An Interview with a Pakistani Freelancer -Waqas Manzoor

OutsourcePK: Tell us about yourself?
Waqas Manzoor: I have done Bachelors in Computer Science BCS(H) 6 years back. I started my career as a network administrator but then I found the Customer services industry as a most booming industry and decided to change my direction and joined a multinational organization. I got experience in almost all areas of customer services industry.

OutsourcePK: When did you start freelancing?

Waqas Manzoor: I started work as freelancer in 2011. One of my friend told me about Odesk and I showed keen interest in it and start exploring this industry.

OutsourcePK: Are you a full time freelancer or you do freelancing beside your job as part time?
Waqas Manzoor: You can say both permanent /part-time as I am doing it side by side with my job and doing 40 hours in a week on odesk.

OutsourcePK: Which Online Marketplace such as elance/odesk you use and which one you will recommend?

Waqas Manzoor: I use odesk and will recommend odesk.

OutsourcePK: What kind of work you do online?

Waqas Manzoor: 

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Personal Assistant
  • Web Research
  • WordPress
  • Data Entry Projects

OutsourcePK: How many jobs/projects you have completed online so far?
Waqas Manzoor: So far I have done 50 jobs and worked more then 6800 hours with 4.98 feedback score out of 5.00 which is exceptional.

OutsourcePK: When did you get your first project online and what was your reaction?
Waqas Manzoor: I got my first job in 2011 and that was only 0.30 cents/hour and I was just so much excited to get this job.

OutsourcePK: Do you have a blog/portfolio that you want to share with us?
Waqas Manzoor: Not Yet. But I do have a plan to start my personal blog.

OutsourcePK: How many hours you work in a day and does this affect your social life as well?

Waqas Manzoor: I work 40 plus hours in a week and YES I am enjoying my social life. Time management is the key to success in freelancing.

OutsourcePK: Your best and worst experience working as a freelancer?
Waqas Manzoor: I have 90% excellent experiences with my clients and just 10% was below average.

OutsourcePK: What kind of advice would you like to give to people interested in Freelancing?
Waqas Manzoor: – Time Management

Always ready to work for client

Be Prompt (give response to employer’s email very very efficiently)

Since you are competing with whole world so you should be very very organized and able to respond to your employer as soon as you can. If you make a little delay then there are million of other peoples who can win this battle.

OutsourcePK: Share your online profile links
Waqas Manzoor: https://www.upwork.com/o/profiles/users/_~01e2b62e6c54b72a2e/ 

OutsourcePK: What do you think are the pros/cons of freelancing

Waqas Manzoor: It’s a huge debate
Pros:

    • Can work at your ease. Can work whenever you want
    • Get weekly payments
    • Guaranteed Payments
    • Can do multiple jobs at same time

Cons:

  • Less Sleep
  • Sometime get boring to sit in front of Laptop.

OutsourcePK: Last Question: It is very difficult to get your first project online so would you like to share any tips/tricks to get your first project online?
Waqas Manzoor: 
Always bid a bit low in early jobs but as profile gets growing then you may apply on better rates.

Most Important Tip: When you are planning to get a job then just sit in front of laptop and refresh the desired jobs page after every 5 minutes and apply only those jobs in which you are in top 10 in applying candidates. This is a guaranteed way to get the job no matter you are new or old freelancer.

Digital Youth Summit 2014

Digital Youth Summit 2014 will be held at Deans Trade Centre (Shiraz Arena), Peshawar on May 21-22, 2014.

Digital Youth Summit is a first of its kind tech conference and expo in Pakistan which promises to bring together the digital community together from across the country.

The conference is invite-only and includes keynotes, panel discussions and breakout sessions on freelancing, innovation and leading startups with speakers and panelists from across the country and abroad. There will be limited tickets available for the conference on-spot.

The expo is meant to showcase Pakistani startups and introduce the youth in Pakistan and specifically in KP to the idea of online work, freelancing and startups. The expo is free and open to the general public.

For more details visit website http://www.digitalyouthsummit.pk/

Blackberry Z10 Review

Key features: 4.2in, 1,280 x 720 screen; dual-core 1.5GHz processor; 8megapixel camera; BB10 OS

Even though the BlackBerry Z10 is only a few weeks old the company is already pushing out a firmware update, which has been promised to improve battery life along with a number of minor bug fixes as well as improving the camera on the smartphone. Shortly after becoming available many users were given feedback to the company, and based on this BlackBerry has come up with the first update for the Z10, and brings the device to BlackBerry 10 10.0.10.85.

Although Blackberry Z10 design is not going to win any design awards but its staid, utilitarian styling feels smart, functional and business like – just as you’d want from Blackberry. Perhaps more important than style is the feel of the phone. It isn’t the most efficient phone when it comes to space around the screen. With large top and bottom bezels the whole phone’s dimensions are 130 x 65.6 x 9mm, which puts it at the same height as the 4.5in screen touting Nokia Lumia 920. However, 9mm is reasonably impressive as slenderness goes and, at 137.5g.

Other improvements to the OS include some fixes for the Gmail calendars, and the company has said that the way users import contacts from online sources has been improved. There has also been an improvement in the performance of third party applications, and stated that during this month a number of big app releases will be available including the likes of WhatsApp. The camera has been improved for low light conditions along with improvements to the browser and video playback, but it’s the improvement to the handsets battery life that will be most welcomed by users with the company stating there has been over sixty battery saving enhancements.

Abu Dhabi Group reacquires 100% stake in Warid Telecom

Warid Telecom was a joint venture between Abu Dhabi Group & SingTel Group. Abu Dhabi Group entered into a strategic alliance with Singapore Telecom. Subsequent to this transaction in May 23 (2005), telecom giant SingTel acquired 30% percent equity stake in Warid Telecom, Pakistan.  Abu Dhabi Group (ADG) has bought back its shares from Singapore’s Singtel, a source just confirmed. ADG desires to consolidate its telecom operations in Pakistan for a larger and profitable entity. With 100% ownership in Warid Telecom, Abu Dhabi Group has further reinforced its commitment to the company. This strategic decision will allow the Group to have a more focused approach as Warid enters its 8th year of operations in Pakistan.

The group in its press statement said that with the 100% ownership in Warid Telecom, they had reaffirmed their commitment to its subsidiary and the Pakistani telecom sector. According to the latest statistics released by the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, the number of cellular subscribers in Pakistan surpassed 123 million at the end of November 2012.

Warid Telecom added 181,877 new subscribers and stood last in the ranking with 12.943 million subscribers on November 30, 2012, preceded by Zong, Mobilink, Telenor and Ufone.

The buyout comes at a time when Warid is about to enter its eighth year of operations in the country.

After the acquisition the group plans to improve Warid Telecom’s operations in Pakistan by introducing new technologies, services and packages.

Abu Dhabi Group is a large business conglomerate in the Middle East and one of the largest foreign investors in Pakistan. It has diversified business interests, offering strong financial resources and extensive management expertise that result in commercial success for several institutions. The Group’s interests in Pakistan range from Information and communication technologies (ICT), financial services, energy, hospitality & real estate, healthcare and agriculture.

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