For anybody thinking of going freelance Melissa Billias will talk about her journey and adventures learning the ropes. She will discuss pros and cons to both freelance and salary positions that led to her decision. Melissa will talk about the importance of having an accountant and attorney on retainer, the beauty of bartering and the importance of contract negotiations. Attendees will learn the value of networking and building a personal brand to enhance marketability, as well as the benefit of being actively involved in tech communities. Attendees will walk away with the tools needed to make an informed decision about going freelance and skills to apply immediately to advance their career path.
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Melissa Billias is a freelance software engineer, and owner, at Ghost Orchid Tech, LLC which she started after years of burn out with the 9 to 5 grind. She graduated summa cum laude from DeVry University and her passion for technology has led her through a various mix of technologies including PHP, VB6, Java, and C#.Net in areas from firmware to software. As a co-organizer of the South Florida PHP User Group (SoFloPHP) and the SunshinePHP Developer Conference, she is revitalized with new goals and a renewed vision as she hacks out her own path to balance and fulfillment.