Best Gig Worker Transferable Skills

Last updated: April 12, 2024
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Janice Reed
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Best Gig Worker Transferable Skills
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Are you a gig worker or freelancer looking to jump into a new industry and don't know if you bring valuable skills to the table? Are you wanting to get a work-from-home job? Are you worried companies won't hire you because you lack industry experience?

Don’t worry — freelancers and gig workers have many transferable skills useful in other jobs. You just need to sell yourself the right way.

This article will look at the main gig work skills that companies value, the right way to sell these skills in your CV and interview, and some job roles that are perfectly suited to gig workers.

Who are gig workers?

Gig workers are independent contractors who work for more than one business, unlike full-time employees. They either get paid for every project they complete or paid by the hour.

There are different types of gig workers.

  • Freelancers — This is the most common type of gig worker. They provide services like content writing, photography, programming, web development, etc., to businesses.

  • Drivers — This includes taxi-app drivers who work for Uber and Lyft, truck drivers, and food delivery drivers.

  • Consultants — Consultants are gig workers who provide advice and expertise to organizations in a particular area (like marketing, business, or engineering). They are self-employed and work on a project basis for different clients.

  • Consulting accountant — Instead of working for one company full-time like regular accountants, consulting accountants manage finances for multiple companies.

  • Handyman — These gig workers are more ‘hands-on’ in nature, like carpenters, painters, or plumbers.

What are transferable skills, and why are they important?

Transferable skills are the qualifications and abilities you have gained over the course of your career or life that can be used to land a job in another field.

It’s important to have transferable skills because:

  • They help you land a job — Having transferable skills relevant to the position you are applying for improves your chances of getting hired.

  • They showcase adaptability — Transferable skills can help you perform well in multiple roles, thus increasing your employability.

  • They increase your paycheck — The more skills you have, the bigger your paycheck becomes.

  • They help you switch jobs — In the U.K., 60% of workers want to change careers after the pandemic. This trend of wanting to switch occupations is catching on globally.

The best way to change jobs is to have transferable skills related to the role you are applying for.

List of top gig worker transferable skills

Let’s take a look at the top skills you’ll learn as a gig worker. These are all skills relevant to both in-person and work-from-home positions you may be looking for.

1. Problem-solving

For freelancers, each client and project brings new challenges — no two projects are the same. That’s why freelancers are whizzes at problem-solving.

Another reason freelancers are good at problem-solving is that it is in their best interests to find solutions to problems quickly. After all, the more time they spend on a single project, the less they earn.

As a freelancer, highlighting your problem-solving skills to employers will make you more likely to get hired.

2. Teamwork

The stereotype of a gig worker or freelancer is that they prefer to work alone.

Of course, some freelance roles do fall into this category. However, collaboration with team members is a must in most freelance roles.

For instance, an engineering consultant may have to collaborate with engineers in the company, and a freelance writer may have to cooperate with the editors and marketing teams in a business.

So when you apply for jobs, emphasize your teamwork experience — you’ll be an excellent candidate for companies looking for team players.

3. Communication

If you're great at teamwork, you probably have another key transferable skill — good communication.

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Good communication is a crucial soft skill for most jobs, and some roles rely solely on communication skills (like sales and customer service roles). Moreover, communicating effectively can help you ace interviews (and become your boss' favorite in the new company, which always comes in handy).

Communication skills can be both verbal and written. Good written communication skills can help you get jobs in marketing and social media management.

4. Creativity

Freelancers are forced to be creative due to the unique nature of every project they handle. A freelance web developer, for instance, must be creative enough to design different websites for different clients.

5. Project management

Gig workers need to be adept project managers in order to complete their projects on time.

As a freelancer, you may already be using project management software to organize your day, set deadlines, and keep track of your budget. These same skills can be used in other settings to manage company projects efficiently.

6. Sales

Like businesses, gig workers gain clients by selling themselves. If you’re frequently successful at landing new clients, you will make a good salesperson.

If you want to get into a sales role, you can employ your sales skills to land the job!

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7. Marketing

If you're a gig worker, you've probably used Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram to find new clients. So if someone finds your profile or posts interesting and hires you for a project, it's fair to say you already have a valuable transferable skill: marketing.

What jobs are ideal for gig workers?

Let’s take a look at three different roles that you can use your skills as a gig worker to transition into.

Sales

A sales role is an excellent career choice if you're looking for something stable and long-term — it’s also a position that you can sometimes do remotely. Plus, it pays well.

In your freelance career, you probably have experience competing against multiple freelancers to land clients. You might also be familiar with the cycle of reaching out to clients, negotiating with them, and getting rejected. This is exactly what every sales rep experiences.

A sales job can be stressful, but if you’re used to the grind and hustle of landing clients, you might feel at home in this role.

In 2020, the average salary of a salesperson in the U.S. was $62,070, and the top 25% earned $89,030.

If you’re interested in a sales job, describe to your potential employer how you have sold yourself to clients in the past. And if you’ve landed famous clients, mention that in your CV — it adds credibility to your selling skills.

Marketing

A marketing career is an excellent option if you’re looking for a job that makes good use of your creative and problem-solving abilities. It’s also a great option if you want to work in a group setting.

Marketing roles pay well, with an average professional typically earning $109,000 per year.

Marketing jobs (much like sales) don’t require a degree or qualification. Since almost all companies need marketing staff to grow their business, there’s no shortage of marketing jobs available.

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Some lucrative marketing careers include:

  1. Social media marketing — Social media marketing involves using online platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to build relationships and interact with customers.

  2. Brand management — Brand management is the process of creating and maintaining a strong, consistent brand. This includes developing a branding strategy, creating brand guidelines, and gaining customer loyalty.

  3. Email marketing — Email marketing is the promotion of a product or service using email. This can include sending newsletters, special offers, and other types of marketing materials to customers.

  4. Product marketing — Product marketing is the process of promoting and selling a product. This can include developing marketing plans, creating sales materials, and setting pricing.

  5. PR/Communications — Public relations is the process of managing the relationship between an organization and the public. This can include developing media strategies, writing press releases, and organizing events.

  6. Event marketing — Event marketing is the process of promoting and organizing events. This can include developing event concepts, planning logistics, and coordinating promotion.

  7. Growth marketing — Growth marketing uses data and analytics to identify and target opportunities for growth. This can include developing marketing campaigns, testing new channels, and optimizing conversion rates.

  8. Content marketing — Content marketing involves creating valuable content (such as blog posts, ebooks, and infographics) to attract and retain customers. Content marketing aims to educate and engage customers, ultimately driving them to take action (such as making a purchase).

  9. Copywriting — Copywriting is the process of creating persuasive, compelling, and interesting copy. This can include writing ad copy, email content, and landing pages.

  10. SEO — SEO is the process of optimizing website content for search engines. This can include keyword research, link building, and on-page optimization.

Project manager

Gig workers who handle multiple clients require good project management skills. They have to submit projects on time and keep quality consistent, lest they lose their lucrative clients. They also need to manage finances well.

The experience gained in managing your freelance projects can come in handy for landing a job in project management. That being said, you’d still need to gain project management certifications. Top project management certifications are:

  1. Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)

  2. Project Management Professional (PMP)

  3. Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)

  4. MPM: Master Project Manager

  5. Certified ScrumMaster (CSM)

  6. Certified Project Manager by IAPM

  7. CompTIA Project+

  8. Program Management Professional (PgMP)

  9. Certified Project Director by the GAQM

Among all the above, PMP is the most popular and will be an excellent addition to your CV. Project managers earn an average of $130,000/year. These are the five phases of project management:

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How to sell yourself to companies as a gig worker

Employers know exactly what they want in an employee when they post a job. If you can match what they’re looking for in your CV and interview, you’ll have a better chance of landing the job.

Imagine you own a bakery, and you want to hire a baker who bakes good chocolate cakes.

The first applicant writes to you saying that he’s great at making ice cream. Well, that’s no good — that’s an irrelevant skill. The second one tells you they make the best vanilla pastries. That’s a little more relevant but not relevant enough. The third person tells you they bake the yummiest chocolate cakes in their town.

Which candidate do you think you’d hire?

To get into the shoes of the client and understand what they’re looking for, read the entire job post. Then when you craft the CV, add only that experience you know will make the client excited to hire you.

Additionally, keep the skills that are most relevant to the job you’re applying for at the top and the least relevant ones at the bottom. For instance, if you’re applying for a marketing job, you should keep all points related to your skills relevant to marketing (such as creativity and communication) at the top.

The best gig work transferable skills

You can use your freelance and gig work experience to land high-paying jobs in other industries. Some examples of these jobs include sales, marketing, and project management — jobs with excellent job security and growth potential.

Landing these jobs is more simple once you leverage the skills (like creativity, communication, problem-solving) gained in your gig work career. All you’ve to do is highlight these skills when writing your CV and giving your job interview.

Want to start your job search? Head over to our job board. You can even filter your results for remote work only. Or, you can read more articles in our resource center.

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