What Does Freelance Mean?
Most people think of things like freelance journalists when they hear the word freelance. But freelancers have now expanded into many more areas. With the growth of the Internet, this has enabled more and more people to go freelance within many roles in business. Everything from accountancy to website design now hasitss own range of freelance roles. So a freelancer is essentially someone that completes tasks for other businesses whilst working for themselves. They aren’t someone else’s employee. They can work where and when they want and are classed as self-employed.
Freelancing has become more popular over the years as people now realise that the tradition of working Monday to Friday 9-5 doesn’t suit everyone. More people need a more flexible approach to work and a better work-life balance. Employers are also being hit with increased costs to employ people that many smaller businesses struggle to keep up with. It can be far more cost-effective for a business to contract out work to a freelancers than to hire an employee to do a specific task. That freelancer can then work from home, in their own time and meet their own needs as well as doing the work that is required.
Why Freelancers Matter So Much To The Economy
As a business, when you hire a freelancer over a large agency, you are putting the money straight into the pocket of the person who has done the work. You aren’t paying for a slide or a ball pool in someone’s fancy office (*note to self, make space for a ball pool in the office). You are paying for work to be done so that they can feed their families and keep the roof over their heads. You are directly contributing to the local economy of that freelancers as chances are they are spending what they earn locally. With 4.8 million self-employed people in the UK, that’s a lot of people working and paying into the local economy. Not shareholders or a CEO’s 3rd holiday home.
Do You Want To Be A Freelancer?
If you want to get started as a freelancer there are loads of really helpful websites to find work and get you started. You might want to try it out whilst you’re still in a job and build up your client base that way. Have a read of this post I wrote last year about How To Go Freelance Without Going Broke. It’s important to prepare yourself for the freelancer life as work can be feast or famine. It’s also very different to being someone’s employee and requires a lot of discipline. And check back here next week as I have a blog post lined up all about getting started as a freelancer.
It’s important that everyone supports freelancers given the huge part they play in UK business. So if you’re a business that needs a task doing that you’d usually ring a big agency for, why not try a freelancer? Why not give someone that opportunity? If you are a friend or a family member of someone that is a freelancer then please help them spread the word about what they do. Recommend them whenever you can (that is a massive hint there to my own friends and family). Don’t be shy. Spread the word. And freelancers, support each other. Recommend others that you know for work to your clients. spread the word for other freelancers. A rising tide lifts all boats.