Several new surveys about freelancing in the U.S. has just been released, and to the surprise of many Americans, it seems that a freelancing job might actually be more financially prudent than a traditional office job.
The first survey, titled “State of Independence,” is the fifth annual report released by MBO Partners. According to TIME, this study found that 2.9 million freelancers working full-time are making more than $100,000 per year; furthermore, 43% of survey respondents stated that they felt more secure being self-employed than when they were employed by someone else.
The second survey, conducted by Upwork and the Freelancers Union and titled “Freelancing in America,” is the second annual survey released by the group. The key findings from this survey echoed what MBO Partners found: 60% of freelancers surveyed by Upwork stated that they’re earning more than when they were employed at a traditional job, and 50% said they wouldn’t go back to a traditional employer no matter how much the job paid.
Economists are in agreement that this “freelancing economy” is a positive sign for the entire country, but more specifically, it’s a positive sign for young workers struggling to get into the workforce. While 38% of Millennials are freelancers, only 32% of adults over the age of 35 are freelancers, according to Forbes.
These self-employed Millennials made the choice carefully, and they feel confident in taking control of their own financial and professional development. This actually isn’t an isolated trend; as consumers, the majority of Millennials (72%) prefer to do research prior to making purchases, rather than making impulse buys.
It makes sense that Millennials would place a high value on control and stability over their professional lives — it seems like a natural response after coming of age during the Recession.
Perhaps the most important detail is that Millennials don’t feel forced into taking up freelancing — the Upwork survey actually found that 83% of Millennials believe “the best days are ahead for freelancing.”