Upon hearing the word “freelancing,” living overdue-check-to-overdue-check may be the first thing that comes to mind—but for many millennials, the freelance life is becoming more and more popular.
According to a new study titled Freelancing in America 2018—for which over 6,000 U.S. workers were surveyed—the allure of independence is increasingly outweighing the security of the standard 9-to-5. In fact, between 2014 and 2017 alone, 3.7 million people took the plunge and started a freelancing career, pushing freelance into the mainstream.
And while 61 precent of freelancers said they hopped on board out of necessity, many others say they made the career change for a better quality of life.
Heres what else they found:
Freelancers Are Living More Independently
If you’re a freelancer, then you know there’s nothing like waking up in the morning and following your own schedule.
“Full-time freelancers are 21 percentage points more likely to say their work allows them to live the lifestyle they want (84% of freelancers say this versus 63% of non-freelancers),” says Fast Company. “In fact, they’re so passionate about the lifestyle independent work affords them that half of freelancers said they wouldn’t take a 9-to-5 job no matter how much money they were offered.”
Technology Is Making Freelancing More Accessible Than Ever
Thanks to programs like Slack and Google Docs, working from home—and finding gigs that allow you to do so—has never been easier. This year alone, freelancers saw a 67 percent increase in work, and if the McKinsey Global Institute is correct, then online marketplaces “could add $2.7 trillion to global GDP, and begin to ameliorate many of the persistent problems in the world’s labor markets”—all by 2025.
It’s Only Up From Here
With millennials now making up a majority of the freelance workforce (Fast Company notes a 38 percent increase in 18-to-34-year-olds who freelance since 2014), the field looks promising.
“Millennials want more freedom to decide when they work and where. Freelancing offers both,” writes Fast Company. “And, as millennials continue to grow in number as a share of the workforce, it’s clear that another Jeffersonian ideal–the pursuit of happiness–is growing in importance as well. Many of those choosing to work differently today are doing so to get back to basics and closer to the lives they want.”
Read more directly from the report by heading here.