Freelancers are independent consultants who work for the people or businesses of their choice. In contrast to employees who work for one firm and report to a boss, freelancers have clients instead of supervisors and choose to work with as many clients as their schedules allow. Freelancing can be done part- or full-time and in tandem with other employment. You set your own schedule. Before making the switch to full-time freelancing, it’s customary to start part-time, gaining experience while they continue to work their regular employment.
Over the last two years, many people re-evaluated their career and life goals, turning towards other priorities. Some had no choice due to layoffs. Others made an intentional change. Regardless of the reason, over 60 million Americans are currently working as freelancers in the US. That does not mean it is the right choice for everybody. To decide whether being freelance is the best course for you, consider the following benefits and drawbacks of freelancing. You will find that most benefits are a double-edged sword.
Freedom ↔ Responsibility
You may work from several places, including coffee shops, co-working spaces, and parks while riding the bus or train, or even while traveling, as well as from your home office. While freedom is one of the primary benefits of freelancing, being your own employer carries many responsibilities. In addition to needing expertise in your chosen profession, you will wear various hats as the human resources director, project manager, accountant, and marketing team.
Diversity ↔ Inconsistency
Working freelance could enable you to experience more variation in your job. There are many different project sizes and kinds available. You might devote two weeks to one project and two months to another. While there are numerous emotions that freelancers go through, boredom is usually not one of them. Seeking diversity in the kinds of assignments you accept might sometimes result in an uneven or erratic workflow. For instance, there may be times when you have multiple clients that overlap for a few months, but there may also be times when you cannot locate many—or any—clients.
The freedom to choose your prices is another benefit of freelancing. You set your own rates from customers according to your own conditions rather than working for a standard fixed wage with the possibility of an annual raise or promotion. There is no upper limit to your revenue as a freelancer, so as you perfect your abilities and build your reputation, you’ll also be empowered to increase your fees gradually.
Although you determine your own prices, working as a freelancer does not come with a steady paycheck. Having funds or a spouse’s income as a safety net is an excellent practice if client business slows down or payments from clients are delayed. The suggested amount of your safety net varies depending on the local economy where you reside, but saving at least six months’ worth of costs is an excellent place to start. In addition to salary, make sure you have health insurance. Check for coverage under your spouse’s plan if they have a decent insurance policy. Otherwise, it’s critical to investigate your alternatives for the different health insurance plans available to independent contractors in your region.