In Bangladesh, the number of freelancers is constantly increasing due to time flexibility and work freedom. The number of workforces is not even less, who have become successful by freelancing. Due to this, many people from different age segments are interested in building their careers in this field. Currently, more than one and half to two hundred thousand active freelancers are working in this industry and bringing in over $500 million in remittances every year. But many people who aspire or currently work in this field don’t have the proper skill set. Most of the time, new freelancers start looking for work on various freelancing marketplaces with very basic skills. As a result, many do not find work, and at one point, they turn away from freelancing. However, some people get work orders with low-level skills but their earnings stay limited. That’s why skill development is crucial for starting freelancing.
As the freelancing sector is quite diversified, here the work type and skill requirements change constantly. Many newbies interested in freelancing join the marketplace with absolutely no skills. Due to which, many people don’t get work orders and become disappointed. Again, most of the active freelancers in Bangladesh do not give much importance to their skill development through the time, so they fall behind. Moreover, due to the lack of updated skills, the earnings of these freelancers decrease gradually. However, nowadays many people who want to get involved in freelancing and start working in this sector, are becoming interested in proper skill development. Many have been able to realize that it is not possible to achieve success in this field without proper skills.
But most of the youth in Bangladesh and those interested in freelancing, often struggle in terms of skill development. In the traditional curriculum of Bangladesh, there is no subject related to skill development. Due to which, most of them are moving towards various institutions and online course providers to learn new skills. In the early part of the last decade, due to the government’s Digital Bangladesh Initiative, countless skill development related institutes were established to develop skilled manpower in the IT sector. As most of these institutes are Dhaka-centric, those who are interested in learning new skills from different parts of the country are required to come to Dhaka and spend a lot of money to enroll in the courses. But not all of these institutes help students in proper skill development. There are complaints against many institutes like keeping the course incomplete, conducting the course by inexperienced instructors, not providing adequate training materials and facilities to the students during the course, not giving them proper guidelines for career development after the course is over, etc.
Meanwhile, several EdTech programs have started focusing on skill development. But here too, most of the EdTechs are accused of offering only basic level courses. As a result, those interested in pursuing a career in freelancing, are in a dilemma as to which institute to turn to for advanced skill development. However, there are several good institutes in the country which have been providing timely updated guidelines and training facilities to the students along with proper education for a long time. Since most of the new freelancers in the country or those who are interested in this field do not have enough knowledge about it, a good institute’s guidelines are very important for them to achieve success in freelancing. Also, since the possibility of the freelancing sector is so vast, it is almost impossible to learn various skills on your own. In this case, it is very important to approach a good institute.
The first thing to consider before choosing an institute is to be sure about your sector of interest and capability. If there is no previous idea, then to determine which sector one should go for is to do research and find what kind of work is in demand in the marketplaces, what amount of income can be earned from this type of work, what kind of skills one needs to develop to work in that sector. Besides, suggestions can also be taken from institutes. However, in this case, in addition to researching the demand of the marketplace and what kind of job demand may increase in the future, one should choose such skills to learn from one’s own interests and capabilities.
After selecting the preferred skill sector, checking a few things before picking a particular institute will make it quite easy for the new entrants to decide which type of institute will be good for skill development. When choosing an institute, the first thing to check is if the courses offered by the institute are in line with current industry trends. If the course modules are not relevant to the latest trends in the industry, then the course will not be effective. Because if the updated skills are not taught in the course module or curriculum according to the latest industry trends, the student will not find a good job in the marketplace and even if one finds a job, he/she will gradually lose the job if they does not get a good rating due to not being able to deliver quality work. Furthermore, if any issues are encountered while working, instructions, crash courses, and proper support should be provided to ensure the student is ready to enter the market at the end of the course.
The next thing to check after the course module is to check how capable are the course instructors or mentors of the institute you are interested in taking admission in. It is often seen that course instructors or mentors from many institutes do not have any prior experience in freelancing or working in the marketplace. However, it can be seen that they actually did not achieve much success as freelancers. Again there are some institutes that copy resources and paid courses available online and claim their own course materials. Then, they open institutes and cheat students with tempting advertisements like students can earn thousands of dollars by attending this course. It is very important to be sure about the capability of the instructors before taking the course. Because after the completion of the course, while working in the marketplace, the necessary support from the institute needs to be provided by the instructor who is skilled and experienced in market trends. In addition to looking at how rich a mentor or instructor’s portfolio is, it is also important to measure his teaching capabilities. Because, if someone is a good freelancer or does a good job as a freelancer, that does not mean that he will be a good mentor. Therefore, it is important to have an idea about the teaching capability of the mentor or instructor.
Apart from this, the quality of an institute can be determined by checking several other factors. For example, it is necessary to verify whether an institute is able to complete the course on time. Besides, the previous experience of the institute in the skill development sector and its success rate should also be given importance. Naturally, institutes that have served the industry for a long time are more experienced and have a higher success rate than newcomers. In this case, it can be verified by talking to the former or current students of the institute. By doing this it will be possible to get a very clear idea about that institute.
There are many freelancing related groups online where you talk to former students who have completed a course from an institute about their success rate, the quality of teaching and learning environment of the institute, whether different course materials are provided during the course, or how much they really support their students. Also, how the institution takes care of a student after the completion of the course, and at the beginning of bidding in the marketplaces or even after getting a job, should also be taken into consideration.