Your very last chance to enter IPSE's Freelancer Awards 2022? It’s today

Through being reminded very often – almost on a daily basis, we know two things to be true about freelancers. First, they are among the most talented individuals in the labour market, and second, they are some of the hardest working, writes Andy Chamberlain, director of policy at The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE).

That hard work benefits not only the businesses and individuals that freelancers work with but also the UK economy as a whole. Our research shows that freelancers make an annual contribution of £303billion to the economy.

Self-employment’s painful reality

Sadly, there’s a third, much more painful reality about being self-employed. People like freelancers who work for themselves tend not to get the acknowledgement that they deserve. Feedback is rare; praise rarer still.

That’s where the IPSE Freelancer Awards come in – they recognise the achievements of our diverse freelancer population and celebrate their hard work. The IPSE awards also acknowledge the organisations which do step up for freelancers – by doing the most to support those who work for themselves.

For this year’s awards, in light of the recent period of national mourning, we’ve extended the deadline for entries until 5pm on Friday September 23rd 2022. That’s 1700 today! So there’s a few more hours than normal to play with, but really no time to waste.

Glitz, networking, and a sharp marketing tool

If you want your hard work on a self-employed basis to be recognised, please enter the awards here. All entries are free of charge, and you can enter into as many categories as you like. The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at the Barbican, London on November 23rd. From attending in-person in the past, I can assure you it’s always a fantastic event and a real highlight of the year for everyone at our organisation.

But the glitzy ceremony (and the unparalleled networking opportunity it provides) isn’t the only reason to enter. The awards provide freelancers with a great platform to showcase their work. In other words, even being shortlisted for a category represents an extremely effective sharp marketing tool. You can put your business in the spotlight while highlighting your skills and achievements to any potential clients. Imagine how good your next pitch will sound, with you telling the prospective client you were a Freelance of the Year finalist!

Your own (oft-overlooked) pat on the back

Perhaps more than that though, it provides you with some space to stand back and recognise your own achievements. Most freelancers are so busy moving from one project to the next that they rarely have the time to reflect, or take stock of everything they’ve achieved in the last year. Simply listing out your successes can provide a big boost to your confidence and motivation. And it always helps to update your portfolio with an impressive title!

Just a little more about us, if I may. IPSE ourselves are award-winners. Last year we won Membership Organisation of the Year at the MemCom Awards. We were absolutely delighted to receive the award. It was shot of adrenalin that spurred us on to continue our hard work representing and advocating on behalf of freelancers. It also gave us a great story to tell our members, potential members and it validated our efforts. We believe that our awards can do the same thing for you, and not just for the winners – even making the finalists stage is an achievement, and one that you can rightly be proud of. But don’t take just my word for it. Last year’s ‘Outstanding Freelancer’ winner, Jaime Gill, explains here how the award helped him and his business to stand out from the crowd.

Speaking personally…

As for me personally, this year is the first time ever that I will be one of the judges for the awards – something I’ve very excited about! I’ll be joined by Jaime along with another previous winner and all-round champion of self-employment, Faye Dicker.

We all cannot wait to read your submissions and feel inspired by the work you do. Then, we will come to the hard task of whittling down the shortlist and choosing winners.

Enter now

So please take the time to enter but do it very quickly as that deadline is almost here. Remember, not only do the awards give you a chance to be involved in one of the most fun business-related nights of the year for freelancers, but they could also be just the boost your business needs. As Jaime said after he won last year, “Don’t presume you don’t stand a chance. I didn’t think I did, yet I managed to win.”


23rd September 2022

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