It takes a lot of confidence to resign, even when you have a brand-new job lined up with signed contracts and a new start date. However, it takes even more self-assurance and perhaps even a helpful pinch of cockiness, to hand in your notice if you’ve got nothing concrete lined up.
Most people who chose to make the change into temporary work don’t have anything lined up, often it is simply a leap of faith…and that’s hard! You have to believe in yourself, have a real belief in your own work ethic and strong confidence in the value of the service that you can provide to clients.
Freelancing is a great way to learn to be your own boss, teach yourself to manage your own time and on top of that, work on different projects, clients, and sectors, which is something permanent work doesn’t always afford you. This cannot only expand your knowledge but give you an independence that you’ve always yearned. But where to start?
As any seasoned market researcher will know, research is indeed important! There are many good online resources that can advise, inform you and frankly, put you right off – should you wish. I’ve been putting together various helpful links over the past few months to not only help out those new to freelancing and contracting, but also to those who’ve been doing in for a while who still need to refer to the odd bit of information.
How to find roles
- Set yourself up alerts on recruitment websites – Learn how to do Boolean searches, set a few up and get emailed when a new role comes up.
- Networking – this goes without saying, whether it be connecting with old colleagues through LinkedIn or getting in touch with a previous boss, you can secure a good percentage of your roles through people you already know. Here’s a great infographic with some tips
- Find a good recruiter 😉
How to set yourself up
- The boring bit…
- Umbrella or Limited? The Guardian gives some advice
- Register yourself as Self Employed?
- Register a Limited Company
- Want to freelance on the side? Here is a useful breakdown
- Advantages of a Limited Company
- If you do not immediately want to take the leap, consider taking a FTC where you can be on your client’s payroll. Failing that, contracting through an Umbrella company can be timesaving and easy, however there are some compliance issues to check before choosing your Umbrella Agency – don’t be taken in by cheap rates or benefits. Know the legislation. A good umbrella company can also assist you in setting up a limited company, they will charge you, but they are also able to help you with taxes, accounting and finance.
- Create our own website with your portfolio, contact info and other important information. If you don’t have a portfolio – start one now, it’s one of the simplest ways to market yourself, even if it’s just a few project examples and some information about what you do.
- Social Media Profiles – Learn how some basic improvements to your online profiles can optimise how you are seen online
- Other Freelancers – LinkedIn has some great groups for freelancers
- A good CV? Make sure your CV really sells you, rather than it just becoming a list of everything you’ve ever done.
- Things to think about before freelancing
- Pros and cons of freelancing
- Legal issues
- Know your Rights. Are you a freelancer? A supplier? A contractor? An employee? The crunch has a great resource for this
- Salary Calculator – very good resource for working out salary/day rates/ hourly rates
- Common mistakes to be aware of when doing your self-assessment
There are many great resources online, these are just a few. If there’s anything I’ve missed out, or something you’ve found particularly helpful, then do let me know!