Work Independently: 3 Advantages and Disadvantages of Becoming Self-Employed

With record numbers of workers now self-employed, many might be wondering if it’s worth the risk. Indeed, in addition to its advantages, being self-employed also has some disadvantages. Keep reading for 3 advantages and disadvantages of working independently:

What’s self-employed? 

Put simply, self-employment is the state of working for oneself rather than an employer. Self-employed people only report to themselves – and need to fill out their own tax return at the end of the tax year. And the growth of self-employment in the UK since the recession has been astounding. According to statistics, as of November 2022, there were around 4.2 million self-employed workers in the United Kingdom. The government has even commented on the amazing fact that there are now more people working as self-employed in the UK than ever before.

3 advantages to being self-employed

More flexible hours
Being self-employed means being able to organise your work according to your strengths. Do you work better in the morning before the “typical” workday usually begins? Or are you a night owl that likes to bash out work in the evening? Either way, one of the pleasures of becoming self-employed is being able to choose the hours you work.

Freedom to choose your projects

While you might have to accept some more mundane assignments when you first start on your self-employment journey, as soon as you get yourself on a roll, you’ll have the opportunity to choose the assignments that really interest you. This also allows you to refuse projects, meaning you never have to work again with a client that pays you late.

 Save on expenses
While many self-employed workers enjoy going to cafes to work from time to time, working independently from home can help you save a ton on expenses. No longer will you have to fork out money to buy work clothes, pay for your morning coffee on your commute, or even commute altogether!

3 disadvantages to being self-employed

Income can be unstable
You might be able to save on expenses when you’re self-employed, however, you can’t guarantee that your income will stay the same. Indeed, when you first start, prospecting for new customers is laborious. But there are ways around this. Until your freelance income becomes stable, borrowing some money through a bad credit loan can help you stay afloat in the first few months of being self-employed.

Hard to separate work and home
When you’re self-employed, you’ve only got yourself to hold accountable. This sometimes makes it hard to separate work from home, since you haven’t got anyone to tell you when your workday is up. Even if you love your job, it’s important to make time for your friends and family, as well. 

Sometimes feeling isolated

Working for yourself means often working without colleagues. Even if your job lets you communicate with clients and customers during the workday, you won’t have many people to share your professional setbacks (or even milestone achievements) with, like you do when you work in a big team. If you’re thinking of becoming self-employed, make sure to fully consult this list of advantages and disadvantages to see if it’s the right decision for you.

Photo credits: Coworking London