Freelancing. Is it worth it?
Is there such a thing as a permanent job?
It’s an interesting question – one which I was asked by a candidate the other day- how permanent is well permanent?
The days of a job for life have mostly long gone – most people will change job every 3 to 4 years for a number of reason including- money, job title, responsibilities and just to have a change of scenery. We even expect to see people regularly change jobs on their CV, unless you are working in a highly trained field (e.g medicine, archeology etc.). In the past I have overheard many a recruiter saying that if you’re in a business for too long then you become ‘institutionalised’ and getting out of that sector or company can be almost impossible.
When you start a permanent job you generally have a minimum of 3 months’ probation period and current legislation makes it relatively easy for an employer to let you go within the first 2 years of your employment. So you could argue that this idea that “a permanent job offers complete security” is a myth.
If so, what other options do you have?
Well, you can keep applying for a new permanent job – to be fair, the added benefits you can receive in permanent work are often better than if you were a short term contractor (such as healthcare allowance or season ticket loan or even pension scheme) and it is nice to know that unless the business goes bust you’re most likely to get paid!
The other alternative is to take the freelance route- there are a long list of benefits for this, but the big one is often the opportunity to earn up to 30% more money than you would if you were permanent. Now assuming you work to live and not to kill time that is a huge amount. Other huge appealing factors for freelancing or temping include the flexibility of choosing your own hours and the freedom to work when it suits you. But obviously this can come with risks , i.e. what if you don’t find work for a few weeks, how do you keep your skills updated if you don’t have the benefit and support of training provided by your employer….
I guess what I am saying is that there no longer a safe option. I’m just suggesting that you look at all options when you are thinking of making a career change instead of just the obvious ones – you might see something that interests you and suits your very long term game plan.
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