In today’s increasingly digitised society, people are no longer required to hold down a standard 9-5 job as we witness a transformation in how we view job security. The digital economy has transformed how we make money, it has also paved the way for new job positions including freelancers. Freelancing is not exactly new, but it has grown rapidly in recent years. The number of freelancers has skyrocketed globally and the American job market alone is expected to be made up of 40% freelancers by 2020.
The pace in which we’re adopting technology onto our daily lives also means that businesses are going digital thus bringing about immense freelance positions for web designers and marketing professionals. Perhaps you have a side job as a freelance web designer or marketer, but you know at some point you want to become a full-time freelancer. How do you know when to make that call? Luckily, making a decision to pursue a full-time freelancer position is a lot more straightforward than you think.
We’ve listed out five signs you’re ready to become a full-time freelancer:
You Have a Business Plan in Mind
Your decision to leave behind your desk job means you lose the financial and job security often associated when working for an employer. When you’re at the helm of the business, you are solely responsible for the finances, business development, and marketing of your company. You will essentially have to be ready to face hardships in business while also revelling in the successes.
Before making a big leap away from your desk job, you must also decide whether you’ll register your business since financial and legal obligations are affected by this decision. By registering your business, it will be easier for you to take out a loan and to work with bigger companies which often require specific legal paperwork – both of which are important for a stable full-time freelancer job.
Without a doubt, the company establishment you apply for is subject to its own set of advantages and disadvantages. As such, you should choose the form you wish your company to have that is most aligned with your financial condition and the vision you have for your business.
Here are three of the most common company establishments for you to register as:
- A Sole proprietorship is fairly popular for small business owners where profit, taxes, and debt are directly channelled to the owner. Thus, if your company owes a significant amount of debt, as an owner, you will be personally liable to pay it off.
- A corporation is a legal entity that is separate from the owner and is often considered a ‘legal person’. Not only can business decisions be made under the corporation’s name, but owners aren’t personally liable to pay off the debts. While this may seem attractive, there is a lot of paperwork and money involved in order to establish a corporation.
- A limited liability company (LLC) is ideal for owners seeking to limit their personal liability in the business. It’s far easier to apply for an LLC in comparison to a corporation, but an LLC isn’t advisable if you’re looking to become a publicly-listed company in the future.
You Are Aware of the Solitary Nature of a Full-Time Freelancer
If you’re a highly extroverted person and find motivation by frequently socialising then striving to be a full-time freelancer may not be the best idea. The truth about a job as a full-time freelancer, whether you’re a web designer or marketer, is that you will have to do the work on your own and sacrificing time with friends and family is a real possibility. With a thin financial security blanket, it is highly probable that you’ll find yourself working more than 40 hours and on the weekends.
Furthermore, because you’re in the business venture alone, you have to be your own salesperson, public relations manager, and CEO. You will have to attend social functions, network aplenty, and promote yourself should you seek to find new clients willing to support your business. Becoming a full-time freelancer requires a high level of self-confidence in your abilities because it will be difficult to convince another individual to use your service if you’re unsure of your own talent.
You Understand the Importance of ‘Money Matters’
You may be driven to start your new career as a full-time freelancer, but being insensible can create serious financial troubles. Any new business owner will tell you that you can expect to struggle financially in the beginning as you find your footing with the company. As lucrative as web design and marketing jobs are – especially if you’re a digital marketing expert – it doesn’t guarantee consistent cash flow. Therefore, it is highly advisable for you to have enough savings to last a couple of months in anticipation of the tough early days.
You Have a Solid Client Database to Start
Based on your experience as a part-time freelancer, you are likely to understand how the amount of money you earn is directly dependent on the number of clients that you have. As such, it is crucial for you to have a solid network of potential clients before forming your company. It doesn’t have to be with the CEOs of prominent firms, but a decent client database will only help you as a full-time freelancer.
Hence while you’re still holding down a job with an employer, be sure to work smart and start building relations with existing external parties. As you work a 9-5 job, it is recommended that you also start building a portfolio of your work. The ability to impress people outside of your employer can go a long way in client referrals which also means more work opportunities for your freelance business.
You Are Deeply Motivated to Expand Your Horizon
Sometimes investing in what you truly believe in is the first step of changing your life because let’s face it, passion can be a great motivator in pursuing new avenues. A desk job is not for everybody and it’s great if you feel an inkling to do more on your own terms. Thus, when you find a growing itch to leave your desk job and you have the necessary resources to forge a full-time freelancer career, then going your own way could be the suitable next step to take.