More than half of the workforce is expected to be freelance by 2020, according to a recent Gallup poll. A growing desire to build a business or simply escape the corporate grind has many trading in their office computers and mahogany desks for their laptops and home offices. But is going freelance really feasible? Can you make a great living and still enjoy all the benefits of being your own boss? The numbers say yes.
The Company Perspective
A freelancer can be categorized into a few segments: the business owner, the independent contractor and the consultant. Companies are hiring these professionals because they are specialized in their crafts.
They also are hiring them because they are cheaper. Let’s say a consumer goods company needs a graphic designer to create an exciting new product campaign. The job will take about four weeks to complete and will include the design of print materials, a website and a billboard.
Instead of hiring a full-time graphic designer with a salary, health insurance and retirement, companies are looking to independent contractors to complete the work.
Why? Because they don’t require the salary, health insurance or retirement costs. They pay for these themselves. Companies also save money by only paying for the hours they agree to in the project contract. Freelancers are easy to find with online talent websites or advertisements through social media or your local newspaper. And as they numbers show, they will only become easier to find in the future.
The Freelancer Perspective
Freelance work comes with a new prestige that didn’t exist in years past. According to a study by the Freelancer’s Union based in New York, freelancers are seeing major gains in their available projects and are excited about their futures.
Some of the study’s major findings include:
- Twice as many freelancers have seen an increase in demand in the past year as have seen a decrease
- Sixty-five percent of freelancers said their line of work is a career path that is more respected today than it was even three years ago.
- Thirty-eight percent of freelancers expect their hours to increase in the next year.