People choose to freelance for several reasons and the majority of freelancers fall under three major categories. They are:
- those who have the burning desire to turn their hobby or skill into a job that fetches them money;
- those who prefer to be able to work only with the clients they choose;
- for some, it is the freedom to be able to work at their own schedule and pace.
Whatever the case might be, one thing is common to these three major categories—freedom and flexibility.
Top 5 Benefits of Freelancing
There are several trainers who have built their portfolio enough to go for freelancing. Other freelancers or solopreneurs choose to freelance over any other because of the many benefits that come with it. Freelancing comes with several benefits revolving around freedom and flexibility.
Taking a deep dive into these umbrella benefits of freelancing, the following can be said to be the pros of freelancing:
- Freedom to choose who and what to work with/on: Truth be told, some clients and even jobs can be a real pain in the ass. Issues ranging from disrespect to constant change of project specs and even unrealistic demands are what regular employees get to face since they pretty much have to do whatever job is handed down to them. With freelancing, people have the opportunity to reject clients and even jobs if the gig doesn’t suit their expectations for a decent job.
- Encourage Work-life Balance: According to a survey conducted by FlexJobs, the need to attain a healthy work-life balance is one of the major reasons why people choose to opt for freelancing. With a regular 9-5 taking most of a person’s day leaving little or no option to engage in other activities, many miss out on other career goals they’d always hoped to achieve. By the time they get into retirement, it is often too late.
- Location Flexibility: As we all know, a 9-5 job comes with the commitment of having to report to a location every working day. Although this comes with several benefits such as lunch, a secure network, and so on, the stress of having to commute daily, and spend valuable hours in traffic is not experienced as a freelancer. This time wasted while commuting to work could in fact be put to better use, achieving something tangible. Besides all these, freelancers have the opportunity of choosing their own work environment and set it up to their own taste.
- Opportunity to Earn More: With a day-job, your pay is often capped at a flat amount per month or pay-per-hour. Except in situations where a person is promoted, this leaves the person stuck at a particular income level – which could be an underpay based on the level of experience and the skills possessed. With freelancing, people have the opportunity to actually earn higher than what they are even worth it.
- Exposure: When compared to any full-time job, freelancing has been proven to avail anybody with exposure to a vast domain of opportunities and clientele. With freelancing, people get to work with clients from all over the world and develop better interpersonal relationship skills. The diversity would definitely come in handy when pitching yourself and your jobs to new and prospective clients.
One Job, Several Responsibilities
While this might seem like rainbows and ponies, it actually isn’t. Freedom seems quite liberating but freelancers often have to take care of several aspects of their job that would have been taken care of by other departments if they were in an organization.
Some of these include: having to organize finances (income, expenditure, and taxes), find and secure projects, breakdown work into components, manage time effectively to be able to meet deadlines, etc. For some freelancers, their work might spiral into hiring and managing someone else so they can handle some parts of their jobs.
Tools Every Freelancer Should Have
Freelancing is slowly gaining traction and is beginning to contribute to every nation’s workforce. The survey shows that 35% of the US workforce is now freelancing. With this number increasing steadily, several tools are springing up daily in order to make freelancers work more effectively.
These tools are numerous and have been grouped into categories as discussed below:
Another reason why some people dive into freelancing is out of boredom of having to repeat the same routine at their everyday job.
For freelancers, every day is definitely not the same and for someone who hates routines, calendar tools would really come in handy. These tools help schedule appointments, deadlines, or important meetings and they remind the freelancer about these schedules at preset times.
Cloud Storage Tools
Cloud storage has typically made it easier for everyone to save and share files in real-time over the Internet.
It is beneficial for every freelancer to use this to share and collaborate with clients from any part of the world – as long as they have a device and an internet connection.
Aside from this, cloud storage serves as a good backup solution to store important files that can easily be retrieved in the event of a system crash or unexpected loss of files.
As mentioned earlier, freelancers have to take care of their finances, and what better way to automate this process than to make use of some tools specially designed to handle these processes. The tools are not only limited to the ability to make and receive payments, as some help with invoicing and budgeting.
A number of them accept credit card payments, available in several countries, and also accept different currencies. When picking an application for finance purposes, be sure to check that they meet your needs and requirements.
With the current state of our cyberspace which is currently perverted with incessant cyberattacks, the need for premium internet security cannot be overstated. Besides the regular best practices consistently preached on the Internet, an additional tip would be to stay private with a VPN – especially when connecting via public Wi-Fi.
Another common application to use is Antivirus. Different variants of both applications are available on the Internet and proper scrutiny should be done in order to choose the best solution that meets your needs.
Most freelancers experience burnout and this is mostly caused by their inability to draw a line between their personal and work time. For some, they find themselves procrastinating so much that they barely get any work done.
Tools under this category, if well applied can help freelancers manage their time effectively in order to be maximally productive.
There are lots and lots of other categories of tools out there that can be utilized by freelancers in order to achieve maximum productivity. Explore on your own and find the tools that are most suitable for you!