Freelancing has become more of a common occurrence in today’s work world. There are many reasons why you might want to start freelancing, including the flexibility it affords you to create your own hours, earn some extra income, and choose your own projects. Employers are also seeing the benefits of hiring freelancers, and there has been a steady rise in these types of opportunities as a result. In fact, statistics show that half of the U.S. workforce will be comprised of freelancers by 2020.
With the gig economy on the rise, it’s important to understand the major factors behind this trend:
New technology means faster connections
New technologies make it easier to find project-based work. For example, recruitment firms and crowdsourcing tools such as Upwork and Fiverr exist with the sole purpose of connecting companies or individuals with top freelancing talent. Resources like this make it possible for 50% of freelancers to find new projects in three days or less, while a quarter can find work in as little as 24 hours. Utilizing recruitment services can also facilitate a quicker and more efficient match between employers and freelancers. In addition, these resources offer an outlet for freelancers to be reviewed by others or vetted by industry specialists, which can help boost your credibility.
A new work lifestyle has emerged
As the typical 9-5 desk job fizzles away in some industries, freelance work is quickly gaining speed. According to our 2019 Career Outlook, 69% of professionals are open to freelance or contract work; an increase from 62% in 2018.
If you need a more flexible schedule outside of traditional work hours, freelance work can give you the ability to maintain a better work-life balance. For example, those with demanding family responsibilities or a burgeoning side business are a couple of examples of professionals who could benefit from freelance work. Similarly, freelancing or telecommuting opportunities can help ease the burden of a long commute to the office.
Increased demand from employers
The flexibility associated with freelance work also presents new opportunities for employers. Evolving project requirements, seasonal upticks in work, or short-term implementations or projects are just a few reasons why employers see the value in hiring a freelancer. Rather than bringing on an employee full-time, hiring a freelancer on a temporary basis can be a more efficient and cost-effective solution.