Surprising facts about the freelance economy, and how to get started.
An interesting article on how the American workplace is evolving. With a move away from ‘normal’ workplaces what kind of challenges do workers face and what benefits are there? Well the answers aren’t so easy. I have been a freelancer for around five years and this last 18-months has really been my breakthrough but with supply and demand shifting how can I, and therefore you, stay in the game?
Check out the article below and head over to their site for some great tips.
The majority of the U.S. workforce will be freelancers by 2027. That mind-blowing prediction comes from the new Freelancing in America: 2017 report, conducted by the Edelman Intelligence research firm and commissioned by the Upwork freelancing platform and Freelancers Union.
Odds are, you’ll want to know how to become a freelancer, either full-time or part-time and either as a side gig while you’re holding down a full-time job or as a way of earning income in retirement. I’ll offer three suggestions in a minute.
The Freelancing in America: 2017 study surveyed 6,000 U.S. workers (freelancers and non-freelancers) to analyze the growing freelance economy and the role it plays in the future of work.
Of course, no survey can predict exactly how many people will be working on a temporary, contract or project basis 10 years from now. And even determining how many people freelance today is tough; statistics on the freelance economy are notoriously elusive. But this report’s findings leave little doubt that we are rapidly barreling toward a freelance-based workplace — and the sooner you prepare for that shift, the better.
A few fascinating findings from Freelancing in America 2017:
- The U.S. freelance workforce has grown three times faster than the overall U.S. workforce since 2014. Currently, 36% of the workforce is freelancing.
- Although freelancers skew younger, many in their 50s and 60s are freelancing, too. About half of freelancers are millennials; roughly 28% of workers in their 50s and 60s are.
- More freelancers are doing it full-time these days, not as a way to supplement their income.Over the last three years, the number of full-time freelancers increased by 12 percentage points, to 29%, while the percentage of moonlighters and part-time freelancers fell. And 63% of freelancers started freelancing more out of choice than necessity (that’s up 10 points since 2014).
- Freelancers are doing well financially. Nearly 2/3 of freelancers surveyed said they now make more than they did when they had an employer. That’s up 10 percentage points since 2014. Of those who earn more now than before, 75% said that happened within the first year of freelancing. The survey found that 36% of freelancers now earn $75,000 or more. Notably, half of freelancers claim they wouldn’t even consider a traditional job, no matter how much money was offered.
- Technology is making it easier to find freelance work online. Nearly 3/4 of the freelancers surveyed said they found work online this past year, up 5 points from the year prior. In short: As technology has improved and companies continue to outsource work, freelancing is becoming a more acceptable, enjoyable and desirable way to work.
This doesn’t mean freelancing is a perfect work solution, though. The triple whammy of unpredictable work assignments, fluctuating cash flow and the challenge of securing and paying for health insurance is still a major obstacle for many freelancers (although most freelancers surveyed believe the Affordable Care Act has helped them and prefer Congress keep it). Worth noting: 63% of full-time freelancers dip into their savings at least once a month; just 20% of full-time non-freelancers do. This article is reprinted without permission from NextAvenue.org .