What do I need to apply for an online writing job?

To apply for a job correctly there are some preparations that need to be made. It is common to have a resume, maybe a website showing your offerings, and some have a twitter or Facebook account.Here is a list of items to prepare before applying for a project or job.

  • Create a spreadsheet to show where you apply for work. In the spreadsheet list:
    • Date job was listed – this will eventually show you to bid early on projects, the earlier you bid, the better chance you have to be considered.
    • Date job closes – most job boards ask there to be an end date to the bidding process. You need to know these dates for any follow up needed.
    • Date you applied – it is good to know when you applied so you can see if you need have more contact with the client or to make sure you don’t contact them again.
    • Name of company – this will include contact details, location, time zones, best time to contact.
    • Details of position or project
      • Depending on the project you will want to know what you bid or the pay that was posted
      • What is required of you, what the client will provide
      • When the outcome is expected to be finished, make sure to give yourself extra time to finish the project.
      • What tools will be required to do the project and who will provide it.
      • How will you provide the finished product?
      • Where you will need to be to do the work, in home, on site, etc.
    • Email address you use for correspondence – it is important to keep straight which email to check for each job. It is not uncommon to have three or more email accounts.
  • Create a resume template. This is a resume which has all of your writing experience, all of your other experience, your education and all organizations, volunteer work, hobbies, interests, or anything else that might have some relevance for a future writing job.
    • How do you use a resume template? For each job you will only include things on your resume that are pertinent to that specific position. Having everything in one place makes it easy to cut out or edit out the things you don’t need for that job.
    • Make a folder on your computer where you can store your resume template and all of the templates you send for each job. This way, you can go back and check what you said on your resume for a particular project.
  • Create a cover letter template – this is similar to the resume template. Include in the cover letter everything you might want to say to a prospective client or employer. Then you can easily edit it for each specific application.
    • Make a folder for the cover letter template and place all copies of the cover letters you have sent.
  • Sample work to send with applications – this will be copies of articles, blogs, e-books, copywriting, and web content that you have written.
    • Create a folder of the sample work. I would suggest either a naming scheme for the files, such as, Article in front of the title of each Article, “Article Applying for Online Jobs.doc” or create subfolders for each type of writing.
    • If you have published work, create an organized list of links that you can edit and then add to the samples of work.
    • If you do not have published articles, blogs, etc, create some sample work to send out.
    • Make sure the links, the published work, or sample work is free of grammatical and spelling errors.
    • Make sure you have first person and third person examples to prove you can do both.

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