How To Get A Well-Paying Side Income

Successful woman backpacker sit on cliff's edge at mountain top

Do you want to go on a holiday, upgrade to a new house, or save more money in the bank for your financial security? Getting a freelance or a sideline job will enable you to steadily earn additional income to help you reach those goals.

There are many types of freelance jobs; they are usually part-time, flexible arrangements, as the word “freelance” says. This allows you to have a main job, and only engage in your sideline job when you are available.

For example, working professionals who are taking a break to study or complete a degree could fill their available hours, say at night, with a job to make additional money, or students who are studying full-time could get a part-time position during their school holidays.

The Ministry of Manpower’s1 statistics show that there were about 200,000 Singaporeans involved in freelance work, and the insurance company Manulife found an even higher percentage of people in freelance work. Manulife found that the number of people interested in taking up freelance work, as well as the number of companies willing to engage freelancers were also increasing. This shift towards the gig economy will only become more pronounced in the future.

The most popular and well-known freelancing work would, of course, be on-demand driving such as Grab, Uber, Go-Jek. But there are numerous other up and coming opportunities for freelance works, such as providing services like cleaning, repair works, electrical works, plumbing works and many more.This is done through the mobile app PHIX. It is a two sided app that connects service providers with the genral public who are in need of such services. 

Female housekeeper with cleaning equipment in hands.

One of the most important things to consider for freelance work is your main commitment. You have to keep in mind your main focus, whether it is your school work or your day job. You also have to consider if your freelance work is in an industry you’re keen to work in, whether you need to commute to specific locations, and especially whether you can find enough time for your freelance work. Essentially, you are exchanging either your time for money, or your expertise for money.

If you don’t know exactly where to start, one suggestion would be to do something you’re passionate about and finding a way to monetize it. For example, if you love to sew, could you teach someone to sew? Could you sell your products on Etsy or Carousell? Doing something you’re passionate about would likely end up being the most fulfilling sideline work for you because you would be spending your time doing something you love, and hopefully could get paid for it.

When seeking out potential freelance opportunities, Mr Walter Lim, founder of a digital and content marketing agency, says you should learn marketable hard skills and explore freelance platforms, such as apps. A freelance platform would enable you to find people or companies who require the goods and services that you can provide.

Networking with current and former colleagues and speaking with friends and family can also be a way to learn about freelance opportunities and explore if they could be a good fit. If you’re still unclear what direction or which industry you might want to go into, asking people about their jobs could be a way to learn about some interesting jobs that you weren’t aware even existed. In addition to making more money, some benefits from taking on freelance work include exploring a new career field or opportunity that is outside your comfort zone.

Challenging yourself at something that you don’t do every day can give you a boost of self-confidence and open your perspective and horizons to things that you may not have even realized that you were good at or liked doing. Although taking on another position can come with challenges, such as scheduling and time management, it can also be fulfilling.

At the end of the day, pursuing freelance work needs a fine balance between predictability and possibility, and between viability and vitality. If you are able to focus on something you’re excited about and get paid for it, it’s very exciting. If the freelance work helps you get closer to your personal goals, whether that’s professional or financial and is helping you move towards the life you want to live, that’s the reward.


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