What: OnwardSearch is a staffing company that finds jobs for digital, creative and marketing experts. It also pays generous referral fees when you recommend the site to a friend

Expected pay: $40,000 + annually, depending on position

Husl$core: $$$

Commissions & fees: NA

Where: Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Raleigh, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, Orange County (CA), San Francisco, San Diego

Requirements: Relevant experience in the field in which you are applying; other requirements vary by job


We found a lot to like about OnwardSearch. It encourages workers to sign up online and post a resume and links to past work. The staffing company will then try to match you with an employer who needs full-, part-time or temporary workers who do what you do.

Employers on this site hire workers in a wide array of technology and creative positions — project management and account services, web design and development, content and copy writing, video, animation and production.

If the client and worker agree on job details, Onward Search will handle the worker’s pay and provide the option of benefits. If the worker has benefits elsewhere, they can decline the benefit option in exchange for higher pay.

Onward Search also pays $300 each 13-weeks, which can be used for continuing education. Access to the site’s 401(k) plan is available for those who work 1,000 hours in a one-year period. (That’s about half-time.)

Onward Search is clearly getting paid from the client and is likely to be collecting a portion of the worker’s pay as its fee. However, if the pay is acceptable to the worker, we don’t object to this arrangement. The site also publishes a pay guide for employers, which details expected annual salaries for various positions and accounts for higher pay in higher-cost areas. Both the pay and the formula for adjusting it by geography seem reasonable.

You can also make money with their referral program. If your friend signs up and works more than 300 hours for an OnwardSearch client, you get a $500 bonus. If you report an open job from a non-client, you could earn a $250 bonus.


You may also want to check out FlexProfessionals, or FreeeUp.

What their users say:

We found copious reviews from people who work in the OnwardSearch corporate office, but none from freelancers who found jobs through the site. If you have worked with this company in a freelance position, please use the comments section below to tell us what you thought. Did the job work out well? Did it offer competitive pay? Were you able to use the site’s benefits, perks or collect a referral fee?

*Updated 11/20/2020

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