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Resources for Excel / Data Freelancers

Useful tips, templates and web resources for freelancers

Where to find freelance opportunities?

You can find freelance opportunities in many places. My top 3 choices are:

  1. Ask your own network:  Email your former bosses, colleagues and business contacts and let them know that you are available on freelance basis. As they already know you and worked with you, it will be easy to convince them.
  2. Fiverr: Use Fiverr to find work, learn the tricks of the trade and grow your reputation. Sign up for Fiverr using my link.
  3. Upwork: Upwork is another great place to find work, freelance opportunities and long-term contracts. Sign up for Upwork using my link.


How to establish your profile?

You can demand high rates and work on interesting projects, if you have a good profile as freelancer. Here are some tips on building your freelancer profile:

  • Build a name brand: Treat yourself as a brand. Every social media post, share and your behavior in public domain should reflect the brand.
  • Be known for something: Don’t cast a wide net. Instead pick one or two topics or niches and be known as an authentic expert in those areas. For example, early on in my career, I kept talking about dashboards and this established me as a world-class expert on Excel based dashboard reporting. Eventually, this brought me many exciting opportunities.
  • Create a webpage: Make a web page for yourself and share your critical information & achievements there. Use the webpage to share your knowledge, passions and projects you are working on. This helps in solidifying your expertise & brand. Use below resources to create your website:
  • Social media: Create a strong and consistent social media presence to build your expertise, network with like-minded people, learn & grow as a freelancer. I recommend starting with below:
    • Linkedin
    • YouTube
    • Twitter


How much to charge?

The short answer is whatever your can get. But here is a long answer:
  • First 1000 hours are for learning: Think of your first many projects or 1000 hours (roughly 6 months of full-time work) as learning experience. So don’t worry if you don’t make a great rate at the start. Instead focus on understanding the business, building systems & processes and gathering testimonials.
  • Calculate your hourly rate: Take your current annual salary and divide it with 2,000 to get your current hourly rate. Double this and you will get the freelance rate. This should be your target rate after one or two years of serious freelancing.
  • Don’t keep all the eggs in one basket: Freelancing is a great way to earn income and be ones own boss. But it is also risky and variable. This is why you should diversify your income streams if possible. Consider options like below to reduce your freelance risk:
    • Taking up a part-time job
    • If you are a family, asking your spouse to keep their full-time job while you freelance.
    • Creating some digital (or physical) products to reduce your clients pain or simplify their life.
    • Build some on-going maintenance work streams
    • Saving excess income and investing so that when there is a lull in the freelance world, you can use the dividends
  • Periodically review your rates: As a thumb-rule, if you have more work than you can handle, consider doubling your rate. Likewise, if you are not getting enough work, considering halving your rate. I have used both these approaches during the course of my freelance life to earn money.

Happy Freelancing 👍


I am using affiliate links for Upwork & Fiverr. If you purchase anything from those website I make a small commission.