2017 was certainly a banner year for freelancers. Instead of being a wary, unreliable form of employment, it was finally seen as what it is; an excellent way to offer a flexible service and the answer for businesses to meet their requirements.
Companies are diversifying the way they hire, and people want more freedom for a work-life balance. Freelancing is a win-win. So now freelancing has finally made its way into the mainstream what can we expect to see in 2018?
Here are five freelance trends to pay attention to this year.
Freelancers won’t be solo
The term ‘freelancer’ suggests a one-man band, but as the freelance community grows, this will be overshadowed by a team approach to freelancing. Freelance teams can be formed for projects to meet every single need of the client.
By having a freelance team who have a range of skills, you’ll be in the position to go for bigger projects and scale up your work for higher profits.
Collaboration is the future.
“Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. It is easy to allow insecurities about age/experience level to prevent you from making a big demand, or asking for a meeting with an influential person, or even admitting that you need help. However, if you don’t at least pose the question, it will probably never happen. So go for it! You might be surprised at what can happen if you just ask.” – Olivia Pavco-Giaccia, Founder of LabCandy:
The use of cloud based software
Freelancers all have their own areas of expertise – from writing to digital design, accounting and computer programming. One thing that they may not feel comfortable with is their own bookkeeping.
Using cloud based software solutions such as Pandle will help even the most mathematically-challenged freelancer to keep up to date with their accounts receivable, accounts payable, tax deductions and more. Staying on top of billing and taxes has never been easier for freelancers.
New ways to find work
Many businesses don’t know where to look to find freelance talent, and many freelancers feel restricted by the current platforms that they use to sell their services.
The demand continues to grow, and more and more marketplaces and communities will appear, be seen on as many as possible to get your services out there.
Instead of an ‘us’ and ‘them’ approach between employees and freelancers, more and more businesses in the corporate world will be turning to freelancers for management services. As management structure changes, freelancers may be more adept at managing projects and teams as they are used to the temporary structures applied.
“Career choice and progression doesn’t have to fit into the standard societal mold. Do what you love and want to do. Find what you’re good at, what you can sell or provide that is unique to you and go for it.” – Dana Donofree, Owner of AnaOno
Fees, timings and performance are hard to quantify currently, however as the business grows, there will be a rise in analytics to give a true reflection of performance and the return on investment. This may make it easier for freelancers to charge higher rates and also allow businesses to allocate a higher budget amount to freelance services.
Growth in the on-demand economy
The increase of this aspect of the economy should hopefully lead to a more harmonious working economy.
Many people worry that freelancers will result in a drop in employment whereby freelancers are ‘stealing’ the jobs of the workforce. What is more likely is that as the on-demand economy grows it leads to more efficient working practices, so people have the ability to do more in their employment, not be let go.
What freelance trends are you seeing take off this year? Leave a comment below or get involved in the conversation over on Twitter.