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Alena Pritula – Russian SAP consultant living in Spain

Alena Pritula started her freelance career in 2014 after she was contacted by a headhunting firm. Based in Barcelona, she has been freelancing ever since that day. Alena loves the freedom that freelancing offers and her dream is to become a digital nomad...

1) Hello Alena, thanks for participating in our freelancer insides series. Firstly, can you tell us bit about yourself and what are you up to these days?

Hello, I moved from Russia to Spain 5 years ago and since then I've been living in Barcelona.
I am a certified consultant, specializing in SAP products in the field of data warehousing, planning, consolidation and analytics. I have 8 years of experience with SAP BPC systems and started my freelance career in 2014.

2) If you would search for your profile on Google, which are the three keywords you would type in the search bar?

Barcelona, SAP BPC, Consolidation.

3) What was your inspiration and when did you actually decide to jump into freelancing?

I came to Barcelona in 2011 with a student visa for a master course in Project Management, but I did not have any job contract there. Fortunately, I still had my job in Russia, because the owners of the Russian company, where I worked allowed me to work remotely from Spain. I was really happy about that – I had the opportunity to study Spanish, to do my Master course and to work from home!

In November 2014 I got a phone call from the headhunting agency “Red Commerce”, they have found me on LinkedIn. They proposed me to participate in a project with location in Basel and Barcelona. I said yes and got my first freelance contract! This contract was full time for the duration of only 3 months, but it opened me the door to the freelance world.

4) What kind of services have your clients asked you to provide?

I provide consulting services in the area of the implementation of budget and consolidation systems.

5) Do you use other freelancers or companies to provide skills that you don’t possess?

At the moment I don’t, but I would like to collaborate with other consultants in the future, I'm going to use my LinkedIn contacts to find new partners.

6) Now tell us, how do you find new clients that are interested in your services?

When I finish a project I have to look for another one. My biggest help in this work is my LinkedIn account. All I need to do is to update my profile and I start receiving new job opportunities. For me this website is the best aid for job searching tasks.

7) Could you cite one thing that you learned in your professional life that really surprised you? What do you love most about your work?

The two things that I really love about my freelance job are meeting new people with every new project and to take vacations as long as I want to take them between projects. I feel free and I'm happy about that!

8) How do you set yourself apart from your competitors? What makes you special?

My experience is the main thing that makes me special.

9) What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about starting a freelance career? And what does it take to be successful as a freelancer?

If you like being responsible for a job and if you want to be more independent you may try to find a small project to start your freelance experience. For example during your summer vacations.

10) What are your future plans? Will you be changing careers or continue along the road as a SAP freelance consultant? 

Actually I don’t know what I am going to do after my current project, maybe I would like to work outside of Spain to realize my dream – work and travel. As for the moment I am really happy to be a part of the army of freelancers.

Where to find Alena:

Link to LinkedIn profil: Alena Pritula

Pic: © Alena Pritula

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