The Stay-at-Home Parent’s Guide to Freelancing

UPDATED: September 27, 2017
PUBLISHED: September 25, 2017

Juggling a full-time job along with caring for children can be incredibly difficult.

Related: Career & Motherhood: 10 Ways to Make It Work​

If you’re a single parent, the pressure to strike a balance between providing and being present reveals its own issues. In a two-parent household, you might be forced to choose between which parent stays home and which goes to work, and that’s if you’re lucky. For so many parents, expensive childcare is the only option upon returning to work.

Today the professional landscape is changing. Alternative working methods—and workdays—are emerging. With the growth of digitalization, more jobs are emerging that better fit our modern lives. That same digitalization also makes it more feasible to become your own boss.

Whether you’re looking for an employer who will support a flexible work environment, thinking of taking your profession freelance or completely retraining to facilitate a work-from-home lifestyle, there are options for parents to find a way to work while being present for their children.

Remote work is on the rise. Telecommuting is a smart option for workers and employers alike due to flexibility, reduced costs and reportedly improved efficiency.

Training can happen anywhere, anytime. The internet has blessed us with the age of information. If there’s a new skill you want to learn, or you’d like to develop existing knowledge, it’s possible, relatively low cost and schedule-flexible.

Here are some of the best learning portals for some of the most sought-after freelancing skills:

  1. Reputable, effective and affordable video-based training in a multitude of business and technology fields.
  2. Skillcrush: Aimed at arming you with specific skills for specific digital jobs. There might be a higher cost, but that comes with a greater qualification at the other end.
  3. Google Analytics certifications: A free training resource directly from Google. This course will teach you to operate and get the most out of Google Analytics, a platform used by most successful business with an online presence. This qualification looks great on your résumé, but it also equips you with the essentials to launch your own website.
  4. Alison: More of a knowledge center than a training forum, Alison is still a brilliant resource for anyone looking to develop their skills in a wide range of topics.

Related: YouEconomy Resource Directory: Find the Right Business for You!

Common Remote Jobs

The roles outlined below are all considered high-skilled, yet they do not require specific higher education and can all be pursued after retraining and practice in the field. This makes them perfect for parents who are looking for a job that pays well and is adaptable.

1. Web/User Experience Designer

Web design is not an industry that looks down on a lack of a degree but instead rewards solid experience. If you have a good portfolio, getting paid customers shouldn’t be too difficult. With some work to develop skills and create a strong portfolio, it’s very achievable to obtain clients as a freelancer or look for an employer that allows remote work.

Check out what freelance web designers and UX designers are earning.

2. Proofreader

There’s little more you need than strong writing proficiency skills and some experience to start proofreading. If you’ve been through college and can develop an online presence, proofreading is a great income source. It’s often a very flexible occupation, meaning you can accept assignments as your schedule allows.

At first, you’re unlikely to earn a great deal, but as you build more relevant experience, your pay will increase. Check out the various types of proofreaders to see which fits your particular interests and skills.

3. Marketer

Marketing services are one of the highest-paid opportunities for freelancers and contractors alike. There often are many postings for these jobs. In marketing, experience matters more than your background. Online training courses can be immensely helpful. You might have to complete a few unpaid projects to build up a track record, but if you’re willing to dedicate some time and hard work, marketing can be a very fruitful career.

4. Salesforce Administrator

Salesforce is an adaptable customer relationship management platform that organizations utilize in day-to-day business. Companies hire staff to help them monitor and maintain its functionality and data.

Salesforce is one of the biggest global technology companies and, in turn, employers. Its job growth is massive, with around 2 million jobs predicted by 2020. Additionally, it prides itself on supporting remote workers.

Salesforce welcomes people retraining and offers a free training program called Trailhead. You can complete this at your own pace to learn about different roles related to the platform’s operation.

5. Translator

Extra language skills are a brilliant moneymaking tool and so often in demand. Translation work can be completely ad hoc and in your control, making it a perfect option for those with unusual schedules.

Parents, the world is changing and you’re in luck. Expect to see remote work increase in the coming years. It might be scary to take the plunge, but the risk is often worth it, especially for parents. Hard work, commitment and time are key.

Related: 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Freelancing (That You Should)

Maria Baranowska

Maria Baranowska is a business, technology and recruitment writer. After working in marketing for some years, she is an advocate for socially responsible business and helps organizations be more transparent. Maria now shares her knowledge through industry insights and advisory articles.