By any measure, The Number of Freelancers in U.S. is growing at an alarming rate. There are no indications that it will slow down anytime soon. According to the Freelance Forward:2021 report, which was launched today by the job site Upwork:
- In the previous 12 months, 59 million Americans worked as freelancers, accounting for 36 percent — or more than one-third — of the total U.S. workforce.
- The proportion of non-temporary freelancers reached a new high. Between 2020 and 2021, the proportion of workers who are non-temporary freelancers increased from 33.8 percent to 35.0 percent.
- Freelancing is becoming more popular among the best educated. The higher skilled character of freelancing is evident in the fact that 51 percent of post-graduate professionals practice freelancing, a 6 percent increase since 2020. The proportion of high school graduates or less freelancing has decreased from 37% in 2020 to 31% this year.
These figures are likely to rise further. According to Upwork, “in the midst of The Great Resignation, more professionals are considering freelance employment in the future: 56 percent of non-freelancers believe they are likely to freelance” in the coming days.
The impact of the freelancing labor on the economy is also growing. The annual earnings of 59 million Freelancers in U.S. totaled $1.3 trillion, $100 million more than in 2020.
Survey of Freelancers in U.S.
Edelman Intelligence, an independent research agency, conducted the 2021 study. Between August 27, 2021 and September 29, 2021, they polled 6,000 working people in the United States over the age of 18.
There were 2,156 Freelancers in U.S. and 3,844 non-freelancers among them. The results were weighted to assure demographic representation in conformity with the 2020 Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey and the American Community Survey published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. At the 95 percent level of confidence, the study has an overall margin of error of 1.2 percent.
Working with Freelancers
Brian Schneider, cofounder and CEO of Unconquered, an independent marketing business, stated that when working with freelancers, they focus on three crucial areas:
- Establish clear expectations. Define their position, expectations, and how they should collaborate with the rest of the team.
- Make them feel like they are a part of the team rather than a vendor, which implies you must have a solid team culture in the first place.
- Allow them to work on projects and/or with clients that are a good fit for their skill set and interests. This is where you’ll find the highest level of labor as well as a sense of accomplishment among the crew.
Jenna Lofton, a licensed financial advisor and small business owner, advised not micromanaging remote freelancers. It is critical that you provide specific instructions on what needs to be completed. It is also critical to provide each individual worker some autonomy in terms of how they wish to do their work.
The future workforce will be shaped by freelancers and remote workers. Corporates and business must adapt with that change. On the other side it will be a good thing for small business and solopreneur. While for the freelancers the competition among them getting tight. Therefore, upgrading skill and choosing the right niche for freelancing some of ways to stand up from the competition.
Source : Forbes
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