According to research published by self-employment group, IPSE, those currently employed in media, marketing, advertising, PR and sales (57 per cent) and construction (47 per cent) are the most likely to have considered making the move across to self-employment. Moreover, the research found that men are more likely than women to envisage themselves becoming self-employed in the future (30 per cent compared to 25 per cent respectively).
When breaking down the reasons why Brits are interested in becoming a freelancer, the research found that the main factor was flexibility, followed by being their boss and an improved work-life balance. The research also found that over three in 10 employees believe that they could make more money as self-employed workers.
The research found that the overwhelming majority of full-time workers - almost three-quarters - believe that the contribution that the self-employed make to the UK economy and society is either fairly or very positive. This is supported by previous IPSE research, which found that the solo self-employed workforce contributes an estimated £303 billion to the UK economy per year.
Derek Cribb from IPSE said: “After 11 years of continuous growth, the number of self-employed workers has fallen dramatically, decreasing by 800,000 individuals since 2019. While many commentators worried that numbers of self-employed workers might continue to fall post-pandemic, this research clearly shows that freelancing is back!
"Brits are still keen to pursue freelancing, with a significant number thinking about swapping their full-time job for the dynamism, freedom and creativity of self-employment.”
The research also looked into the rise in side-hustles - those in full-time work creating additional sources of income through a secondary role, business or gig. It found that almost half of full-time workers are interested in adopting a side-hustle. Women are slightly more likely than their male employee counterparts to be currently adopting a side-hustle.
With worries around inflation increasing in recent months, the research found that of those with a side hustle, over three in 10 (35 per cent) started their side-hustle to help them cope with the current cost of living crisis. It also found that of those that haven’t yet started a side hustle, just over half would consider it to help them manage the crisis.
For those uninterested in becoming a freelancer, the research found that their main reason for not making the switch is wanting a fixed regular income, followed by job security. Further barriers for employees included not knowing where to start, not having enough financial capital to set up a business and lacking confidence in their ability to work for themselves.
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Susie Hughes © Shout99 2012