freelancing job updateOnce again, Freelancer.com has published their quarterly Fast 50, a barometer of demand for freelancing work based on the fluctuations of their giant online marketplace. There was good news overall as the number of job postings rose from 114,000 jobs Q3 to 134,820 jobs in the fourth quarter – a jump of almost 20%.

The best performing sector was – somewhat depressingly for those who don’t enjoy menial work – data entry, up a massive 54%. There was good news, however, for those who enjoy spreadsheets (do people enjoy spreadsheets?) – Excel work followed in close second with a rise of 51%.

The news was positive for developers and programmers – C++ grew 38%, Java 36%, and .NET 27%. As we’ve seen in previous quarters mobile developers are in high demand, Android and iPhone work jumped 33% and 18% respectively.

Social continued growing. Facebook-specific work was the ninth largest riser with growth of 29%, Twitter was in twentieth place with growth of 16%, and the more general “social networking” category grew 26%.

Although last quarter’s surge in demand for content production did not continue, there is still growing demand for content with copywriting up 10%, blogging up 11% and article rewriting up 25%.

HTML5 continued to outpace the aging Flash with growth of 41% for a total of 1,585 jobs posted in the quarter. However Flash isn’t dead yet, and still posted modest growth of 6% – and racked up a much larger 2,955 jobs in Q4.

Google AdSense and Ghostwriting jobs tied for the biggest loss of the quarter, both down 21%.

In terms of raw volume PHP and website design scored the biggest numbers. PHP was far in the lead with 28,872 postings, while website design trailed somewhat with 22,245.

Freelancer.com’s Chief Exec Matt Barrie said of the results:

“Overall, online projects were up over 18% for the quarter. The sophistication and nature of jobs continues to amaze us as we see jobs outsourced in areas as diverse as Astrophysics, Genetic Engineering and Industrial Design.”

Photo by Michael Himbeault - CC