The freelance economy continues to grow from strength to strength with both employers and employees alike celebrating the flexibility that such an arrangement grants them. From an employee’s perspective, freelancing allows you to truly be the boss of your schedule and find projects that will excite you. For those continuing to beef up their freelance work, read on below for some tips on how to make freelancing your full-time job.
Remember to save up
As with any career shift, you’ll want to save up before resigning from your current job. This tip is all the more important for those switching to freelancing full time: it might take some time before you get steady income, and it’s likely that you’ll be juggling different projects when starting out. Having emergency funds saved up helps ease the financial burdens of starting your new career, which means you can invest your time in networking and adding to your portfolio.
Build your portfolio
In connection to the previous point, you’ll want to build a portfolio to send to potential clients. It’s better to do this sooner rather than later, and having a portfolio in place means you can start adding projects as soon as they come in. Le Wagon suggests investing in a website as a way to draw in clients. Setting up a simple blog or using a template from a hosting service is a good start, and these options are more than enough for those who aren’t necessarily going into the tech world.
Create an ideal schedule
When wading into the freelance world, it’s all too easy to be wowed by how much time you now have. It might be tempting to finally sign up for that gym membership you kept saying you were too busy for, or finally go out and explore a part of town you’ve been meaning to for ages. These are great plans you should definitely keep, but also remember that the first few months of your freelance career will take a lot of work: you’ll be reaching out to clients, working on projects, and the like. Mapping out an ideal working day keeps you grounded and helps you remember that freelancing is still, at the end of the day, a job.
Find a co-working space
Freelance work relies on connections and networks, which is actually the key reason why co-working spaces are flourishing. Industrious outlines how co-working puts you in contact with a whole community of businesses, entrepreneurs, and even fellow freelancers. These are valuable connections you can make all across the country, especially as co-working spaces can be found in almost any major city. The physical space helps you ease into the freelancing life, as it still feels like you’re headed to work — only this time, with much more flexibility (and hot coffee always available).
Figure out your rates
Figuring out what to charge is a real problem that many freelancers face, which means it’s a problem you should nip in the bud as soon as possible. You can use the rates you’re currently charging for your projects, but The Balance recommends working backwards by setting an ideal annual income for yourself, going back to deduct expenses and taxes, and then seeing how much you can reasonably charge per hour. This will also help you estimate your rates for clients that want to pay you per project. Ask Yvi‘s focus is all about getting your career on track while taking the time to care for yourself, which a freelance career allows for. Preparation is key in order to make your freelance career really take off, so just remember to take small actionable steps every day. Before you know it, you’ll be the best freelancer around.