What's popular: Freelancing - here's why

Updated: Feb 10

Recently, freelancing has greatly increased in popularity as many individuals are choosing to work remotely. In 2021, a survey conducted by Upwork concluded that 20% of employees were considering becoming freelance contractors. The number of people interested in freelancing has greatly increased since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. Research has also found that in 2021 the number of freelancers in the U.S. increased from 34% to 51%. LinkedIn also explains that by 2027, it is believed that more than 50% of people will be freelance employees. During the Covid-19 pandemic, many workers were requested to work remotely, and this caused them to realize the potential for a career as an independent contractor. Many people started to recognize that working independently can result in a better work environment than working as a full-time employee. In comparison to full time employment, npr reports that freelancing offers more variety and flexibility. Forbes reports that women make up many of the new freelancers due to new family life developments during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Many workers are also turning to freelancing employment because they have limited options. Many workers have been let go during the pandemic and as a result turn to freelancing. Workers are choosing to pursue freelance employment mainly because of labor shortages caused by the pandemic. Even though freelancing is becoming more popular, it is also seen as an insecure career given the lack of benefits that freelancers receive. NPR reports that since the pandemic began, many job postings shifted to relying on temporary or freelance employment. They report that advertising and human resources positions are also quickly shifting to being freelance or temporary positions. NPR writes that when the market is unpredictable, many employers move away from hiring full-time or permanent employees. Also, the development of online resources for freelancers has greatly contributed to the accessibility of workers moving to freelance employment. There are also many platforms that allow freelancers to connect with potential employers. These platforms allow for an increase in the popularity of freelancing, as any skilled worker can easily begin freelancing. Upwork is a main example of these newly popularized platforms. Upwork has been able to connect millions or organizations and freelancers and greatly increased networking amongst the two parties.

Companies are also realizing the different benefits of hiring freelancers over full-time employees. It greatly benefits employers to be able to hire specialized workers for specific short-term projects without having to provide various benefits. This also allows them to avoid the hassle of interviewing and hiring a new employee when they might only have a small task they need completed.Even though freelancing can have potential downsides, it allows workers to have control over certain elements of their career they might not have working for a larger company. For example, freelancing has gained popularity because it allows workers to have better control over their personal finances. This also allows them to change their rates whenever they feel appropriate. Linkedin describes freelancers as having unlimited earning potential because they are able to determine their own wages and hours. Work life balance is another important reason that freelancing is gaining popularity. In a flexjobs survey, 70% of people explained that they felt that freelancing allows for a better balance between career and life goals. Another important aspect of freelancing that increases popularity is the ability for employees to choose their location while working. Many people would like to move freely without having to leave their company.

Freelancing allows individuals to have more freedom when it comes to relocating. Freelancing can also lead to workers becoming more well-rounded and competitive overall. For example, freelancing can allow workers to learn new skills that can be beneficial in the future. Since many employees are choosing to complete tasks through freelancing, many workers can miss out on potential opportunities if they choose not to pursue freelancing. Freelancing is also important because it allows workers to have more of a say regarding the type of work they want to complete and also the companies they want to work for. This leads to freelancers being more happy with their tasks and work environment. Freelancing has gained popularity for many reasons, and it is likely that many workers will continue pursuing freelancing opportunities in the future.

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