The UK is now home to an estimated 1.9-million freelancers. And that number is growing every day.
Both economic uncertainty and the appeal of a flexible work-life balance are contributing to the rising popularity of freelancing, being celebrated across the nation for National Freelancers Day on June 9, 2016.
The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed will host a day-long celebration in London, including workshops and presentations by guest speakers, as well as the 2016 IPSE-QA Freelancer Awards.
“The day has been redesigned and extended to give practical advice on how to be at the top of your game with interactive workshops, one to one sessions and networking opportunities as well as acting as a celebration.” –nationalfreelancersday.com
IPSE represents the UK’s 4.6-million self employed professionals, who now make up more than 15% of the entire UK workforce – and many of them are working from home. A recent survey commissioned by IPSE found the number of freelancers in the UK has risen 36% since 2008, from 1.4 million to 1.9 million.
The report, ‘Exploring the UK Freelance Workforce in 2015′, states freelancing is the fastest growing sector of the European labour market, booming in the same period UK’s unemployment increased by almost 50 per cent.
“Freelance working has continued to rise throughout the period, suggesting that macroeconomic circumstances exert an influence on the demand for, and supply, of freelance workers. The benefits to end-users of hiring freelancers continue to be evident with the economic upturn,” the report reads.
According to the report, a staggering 1.65 million people freelance for their main source of income, while only 255,000 freelance as a side project. And more men are freelancing than women, with a 60-40% divide, while the number of mothers freelancing rose 70% between 2008 and 2015, with working mums now making up 1 in 7 of all freelancers in the UK.
The largest proportion of freelancers are aged 40 to 49, accounting for one quarter of the freelance workforce. But freelancing is a popular option for all ages, with a 63% increase of freelancers aged 60 and over since 2008 (21%), and a 51% increase in the Gen Y freelancers in the 16 to 29 age bracket (11%).
Freelancers are working across a wide range of industries too, with the largest numbers engaged in professional, scientific and technical activities (384,000), arts, media and literary fields (328,000), management and proprietors (222,000), teaching and education (139,000) and IT and telecommunications (117,000).
As we celebrate 2016 National Freelancers Day, it is clear the UK is embracing flexible employment and remote teams, and we at Remote Work Hub are honoured to help connect more people to remote jobs and freelance work in the UK, and across the world.
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