Freelancing. Is it worth it?
Is there such a thing as a permanent job?
It’s an interesting question – 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, archaeology etc.). It’s a common perception that if you’re in a business for long you might become ‘institutionalised’ and after a number of years you might find that changing sector or employer 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 main ones include
- The opportunity to earn money whilst you are looking for permanent work.
- The chance to be able to learn new skills
- The opportunity to find out how other companies operate and decide if they are the kinds of places where you could see yourself settle
- The flexibility of choosing your own hours and the freedom to work when it suits you. 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? ….
- There are no “100% certain options”.
But when you are thinking about your next move, consider all options and not just the obvious ones – you might come across an extremely attractive freelance contract that interests you more than the permanent jobs on offer and could help you in your long term career plan.