Online freelancing clicks up business worth $63 m

Written by Vrishti Beniwal | New Delhi, Sep 13 | Updated: Sep 14 2007, 07:23am hrs
Person-to-person outsourcing is the next big area where India is going to make its mark after creating ripples in outsourcing and reverse outsourcing. As a large number of individuals in the US and other developed countries catch a fancy to outsourcing of personal services like tutoring, writing and graphic designing, freelancers in low-wage countries like India are starting to mint money sitting in the comfort of their home.

Typically, the work is outsourced through online channels like guru.com, elance.com, and rentacoder.com, wherein the seller of the service pays a monthly subscription or a fixed percentage of revenue (typically 5-15%) earned from the project. One can earn anywhere between $25 and $75,000, depending upon the work, which may range from accounting, interior designing, marketing and website development to software development.

According to Evalueserve, between April 2006 and March 2007, revenue from such freelancing totalled more than $250 million, and is likely to grow to over $2 billion by 2015, representing a growth of about 26%. According to estimates, about a quarter of the total online outsourcing business comes to India and that is expected to grow to a third soon.

Our web-based marketplace directly connects businesses with over 6 lakh freelancers who specialise in over 160 professional categories. Initially, it was launched for small businesses, but in the last six months we have witnessed a rise in the outsourcing of personal tasks, too. The Indian market is ripening for us as people are ready to provide services for as low as $12-14, said Inder Guglani, CEO of Guru.com.

Currently, about 100 online marketplaces functional globally, with over 5 lakh vendors and freelancers exchanging services.