Proofreading Jobs Summary
The job of a traditional proofreader is to make sure that a manuscript is free of any errors (such as grammatical, typographical, and syntax). You could apply for online proofreading jobs and expect the same responsibility.
Your job as an online proofreader is to do a quality check on publications and materials before their publishing or printing. You should notice that there is an extra space before a period. You should know that the word must be “you’re” instead of “your.” You should know how to change the syntax so that the flow of content in a sentence is smooth.
The nature of the offered job or business of the company that needs a proofreader will most likely determine what educational background you must have as an applicant. Most companies look for a proofreader with a bachelor’s degree. Some will have a more specific educational requirement such as shown in Figure 1.
Although the company is only offering a part time remote proofreading position, it still prefers the applicant to have a bachelor’s degree in English, communications, marketing or advertising. Other companies offering this job position may also look for individuals who have completed related courses such as journalism. This is most likely because there are skills and proficiencies that one needs to possess to be an efficient proofreader.
Skills And Attributes
There are some specific skills necessary for performing proofreading tasks.
You need excellent vocabulary and grammar skills. It is not enough that you correct spelling, but you also need to know if the sentence has a proper punctuation, correct subject-verb agreement and appropriate syntax.
You need a very keen eye for details, specifically for spotting even the tiniest error. For example, in this article, you could read that there are only 3 mistakes in all 7 paragraphs of the exercise. To do this, you need to focus your attention to what you are doing. You need to have the patience to scour every sentence and not skip even one.
You could encounter job advertisements where the client requires a candidate to have knowledge in writing and citation styles like APA,
You need to have the knowledge in using the computer and computer programs or apps for proofreading. A commonly used program is Microsoft Word, so you must know how to make the most out of its features to make your proofreading task more efficient.You must have the flexibility in proofreading different materials in various fields and industries. An online proofreader may work on a variety of written materials such as books, blog posts, emails and social media posts. In Figure 2, for example, the successful person will work on cooking recipes.
The task involves comparing 2 documents and making sure that they have the same details, such as temperature, time, ingredients, measurements, steps and actions. Part of the job is to modify sentences with a passive voice.
Your task could also include correcting transcripts of audio and text files, such as what this video tells about.
Other types of content that you might need to proofread include essays, novels, user manuals, restaurant menus, newsletters, press releases and more. You have the option to focus on just one type of content and apply to job offers that only involve such materials. Yet, for career growth and better earning potentials, it is better to accept a variety of materials.
Further browsing for jobs will lead you to discover that clients require the candidate to perform other tasks related to proofreading and among these other tasks is copy editing. Therefore, it is wrong to assume that proofreading is just spotting any possible mistakes. The proofreading job involves some editing tasks.
When you read that a job offer also involves copy editing, expect that you will need to do more editing or to make larger changes to a manuscript. For this reason, such job ads may also contain additional qualifications such as specialization in a particular field. For example, a computer company might need someone to proofread and copy edits its technical manuals so it might require an applicant to have technical knowledge on software and information technology.
When you work as an online proofreader, you could do your job either on a computer (desktop or laptop) or a mobile device. In the previous section about the required skills, you have read that you need to have the familiarity in using certain proofreading tools. There are a lot of tools you can find online that are specifically useful for proofreaders, editors and writers. Some clients may require that you use tools like Google Docs, Grammarly and ProWriting Aid for detecting errors.
How To Apply/Join
You could apply for online proofreading jobs through online job portals where you have found the job ad. You may also search online for recommended proofreading companies where you could register and apply.
ProofreadingServices.com, for example, is among the top search results you might see when you search online (Google) for online proofreading jobs. Visit the website and take the grammar test. You will not get hired instantly since you have to wait for the company’s email if ever you pass the test before you can proceed. While waiting, you could make use of the link that they will provide you where you could see other resources and websites for proofreading jobs.
As with any other websites that require registration before you could apply, you need to read reviews about ProofreadingServices.com. Among the various write-ups you could find about this company is that it is open to all applicants around the world. An applicant’s test score is more important than the applicant’s location.
When you pass the test, you will receive the style guidelines you need to follow when proof reading. You will need to complete some sample edits at this point. At this stage, know there are still chances that the company could reject your application.
As you search for proofreading jobs, you'll discover that many offered jobs involve various other tasks aside from proofreading. They advertise some positions as an opening for content writers, but the roles include research, writing and proofreading.
Planning and Preparations
The pathway to a successful online proofreading career starts on the avenue of planning and preparation. For example, you now know that there is a grammar test that you need to pass as part of the application. The company mentioned above is just one of the many companies that offer proofreading jobs and services so expect that whichever company you apply
Figure 3 shows a proofreading website that requires interested applicants to take a preliminary test. It is only a preliminary test, so it means that there could be other tests you need to complete. Expect to answer a variety of questions involving spelling, grammar, and more. Rather than rely on luck to help you land a job successfully, you could prepare for such tests by once again searching online for practice grammar and editing tests.
Once you have passed the test, your preparations also need to continue. Remember that proofreading may also involve certain styles so take time looking for manuals and resources on MLA, APA and Chicago formats. Read more materials and manuscripts since proofreading involves a lot of reading. Check the internet for online classes you could take to perform proofreading tasks.
Figure 3 shows the application page of Proofreadingservices.com. If you are interested in applying here, you must read more about the company first from reviews and feedback from others who have worked there. You could read that the pay rate of $19-46 per hour depends on the turnaround time. The most urgent deadlines will pay you more. The time and the length of the document will also determine the pay amount.
An online proofreader’s work schedule is usually flexible. A job ad could contain the preferred schedule of the employer. You may work whenever you want, but remember that there are deadlines for each project assigned to you. From the example above, you can work for proofreadingservices.com on your preferred schedule in any time zone as long as you can meet the deadline for each project you take.
In Figure 4, you see that the person the client wants to hire is someone who could stay on standby mode since it will send the documents anytime and expect the proofreader to submit the final work as soon as possible. This is an example of a job you might not want to apply for because of the not too flexible work schedule.
Benefits / Bonus/ Increase/ Training Provided
The benefits you will get as an online proofreader are mainly flexibility in schedule. Each client or company may also offer the training you need to learn the process it implements for its proofreading services. Look at Figure 5.
The perks you will get if you work for Cambridge
There are various online jobs that you can pursue, and I think online proofreader jobs are among the worthwhile ones to consider. You might want to first try it as a part-time job and if you think work is more than enough, you may take on additional projects and perhaps pursue it as a full-time job.