Overseas Companies Hiring American Workers

When Donavon Brutus got laid off from his animation job in June 2009, he knew the amount of freelance work near his home in Tampa, Fla., could not sustain him. But rather than spend months looking for a full-time, salaried position in a state with a 12.2 percent unemployment rate, Brutus went online and started working for oDesk, one of a growing number of Web sites that connect contract workers to temporary projects. Now Brutus earns an average of $16 per hour designing logos, 3-D graphics, and CD covers for companies as far away as China, Australia, and India. “The only issue has been the time difference,” he says. “But that’s only been a problem with one client in India, who wanted me to wake up at 3 a.m.”