We'll hire more freelancers online, say firms

The prospects of freelancers who can be hired online look bright for the rest of the year, in light of the majority of firms familiar with the process planning to increase their use of such remote talent before 2014.

In fact, according to freelance project website Elance, almost three-quarters (74%) of companies say that they will hire more freelancers in 2013 relative to the number they took on in 2012.

Although the website acknowledged that cost savings invariably play a part – because such workers are cheaper than taking on staff permanently – it said the “bigger driver” was that the freelance talent were seen as “higher quality” than conventional personnel.

The skills being offered from such flexible workers is also significant, hinted the site by pointing to a 153% rise in the stock of freelancers listing science, technology, engineering or mathematics as their specialisms.

Interestingly, freelancers are aware that they are sought-after. According to the research by Elance into its users, about two-thirds (67%) of freelance professionals expect their income to increase in 2013.

But without knowing about it, the freelancers confirmed what their aspiring counterparts see as the perk of being completely self-employed – the freedom. In particular, the freelancers estimated that they have 28 extra ‘personal days’ than when they worked in a corporate environment.

Exactly what the freelancers get up to on these ‘personal days’ was not revealed in the research but it may be work-related, given that more than seven out of ten claimed that they felt more productive than when they were in a 9-to-5 position.

 

23rd May 2013

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