Demand and supply: Independent Contractors
Companies, Flexibility: Hours, Family, etc., Freelancers, Self-Employed, Services

Supply and Demand: Independent Contractors

Interview with Steven King of Emergent Research and someone who I consider one of the go-to-guys for information about the Freelance economy. During the Interview, Steve state that:

  • 30% of the workforce are Independent Contractors and Freelancers… Many of these people are doing part-time work
  • 60% of Freelancers do this work by choice and 25% are doing it based on necessity
  • People are becoming Independent Contractors because they want autonomy
  • Biggest issues and concerns center on the fact they have no benefits, do not get reimbursed for expenses and always have to find their next gig
  • Freelancers have to be a jack of all trades and wear many hats, but it does help fi they can find an accountant and a lawyer to assist them.
  • More and more companies and developers focus on creating solutions for this market. QuickBooks for the Self-Employed is an example.
  • Both companies and developers need to think about what platforms, such as Intuit or Google, do you want to associate yourself with. More and more developers are focusing on vertical markets and areas where they have experience and expertise.
  • Big companies are relying increasingly on a contingent workforce where they can scale up and down quickly, hiring independent contractors when they need them. The demand-side (Companies:) get a significant cost savings because they save 10%-20% in hiring a part-time worker vs. a full-time employee. Conversely, the Supply Side (the Contractors) gets autonomy and flexibility because they can pick their assignments and when they do these assignments..

Steve finishes the interview with this piece of wisdom:

  • Start part-time and don’t give you your day job
  • Give yourself a financial cushion
  • Show up for work every day (you need to treat it like an everyday job)


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