The Age of Freelancers: Tracing the Causes
One of the most crucial discussions surrounding the workforce revolves around the rise of Freelance economy.
The traditional teams and offices are increasingly replaced by the virtual ones. Employees once stayed with a company for five years minimum, today’s employees are more likely to be working with five companies at once.
Independent contracting or self-employment has become the top choice for professionals looking to live a life on their terms while working at their pace. Corporate downsizing, monotonous and repetitive workflow, hierarchy at work, and employee dissatisfaction are some of the few reasons why professionals find freelancing as a goldmine of opportunities. According to the labor research firm, the Economic Modeling Specialists, there was a significant surge in the number of freelancer from 20 million in 2001 to 32 million in 2014 globally.
For most organizations too, freelancers are no longer a temporary backup, but rather an opportunity for companies to reach across the furthest corners of the earth to collect the most effective and skilled workers. Hiring freelancers is increasingly becoming an integral part of HR strategy of global organizations. It’s a highly tactical tool to cut across times zones and geographies to engage the best talent.
Here’s outlining what actually caused this surge:
- Technology Platforms for Freelancers
With freelancing, uncertainty comes in handy. A freelancer is often looking for new and promising projects to act on, while the companies are always on a look for a befitting and talented employee.
About 35% of respondents in a recent survey by Contently, said that securing enough work was their biggest daily challenge.
This mismatch in the demand and supply has been bridged by technology over the past decade, which has been a major reason for its popularity. A multitude of platforms that allow freelancers to find work and companies to advertise their needs have been existing for quite a while now.
ELance, Upwork and Fiverr etc are some of the most famous ones, empowering both freelancers and companies with a viable solution.
- Freelancers and Employers – Win-win for both
The freelance model has also grown because of it being a beneficial solution for both the parties.
For companies, having a virtual employee is a more economical solution. They can do away with the cost of employee privileges and only pay for the work they require. Freelancing blurs the geographical boundaries and talent acquisition is purely on the basis of merit.
For employees, working on a freelance basis allows them flexible working hours and a greater freedom over how and what they work on.
- Co-working spaces
Alongside the advantages of flexibility and independence, a freelancer may often run the risk of lack of productivity due to reasons galore. The professional life tends to bleed into the personal life and the freelancers more than often feel isolated.
But the rise of co-working spaces across cities is changing that, offering freelancers an unprecedented support and resources.
Co-working spaces are now proliferating with a conducive and productive environment along with a platform for like-minded people to network and grow.
With minimum cost, the benefits of renting a workspace for a specific amount of time, in conjunction with the additional perks of having great aesthetics and end to end premium services, the idea of co-working is a boon to the space needs of freelancers.
- Boom in the entrepreneurial spirit
People across the board are becoming more comfortable with risks and managing their own businesses. More and more people are opting in for autonomy and independence in their professional careers, the logical result of which points towards becoming an entrepreneur.
A freelancer or a solopreneur is often deemed as a microcosm of entrepreneurship. Freelancing is a business in itself. A freelancer has to wear multiple hats and juggle his energies with not only his work but administrative and marketing work to keep up.
Thinking about jumping in the freelancers’ bandwagon? Drop us a line and we’ll help you smoothen the process.