Freelancers and employees: are they the same thing? Well, technically when a boss or client hires a person, they become an employee. However, there is a difference between freelancers and employees. Below we will be discussing the difference between the two and how it could help your business grow. We will also discuss the benefits and disadvantages of using each different type of worker, because, when it comes to freelancers vs. employees to grow your online business, there is a big difference.
What is a Freelancer?
The Google definition is as follows: “Freelance, the freelancer, or freelance worker, are terms commonly used for a person that is self-employed and not necessarily committed to a particular employer.” This means that a freelancer can pick and choose the jobs he/she would like to work on. Being a freelancer also means that you have the choice of taking on more than one type of job, from a different employer at the same time. You are not bound to one client or by any contract. The only contract you are bound by is the one you make with the client before the project begins.
This contract can vary from job to job as well as client to client. Freelance work is an ever-changing environment that requires a particular type of person to make freelancing successful. Because of the nature of a freelancer, they are not bound to location either; if you have a stable internet connection you can work. This means that freelancers are afforded the opportunity of traveling while working or choosing their hours. So far, it sounds glamourous but, not everyone can meet the intense workload that some freelancers complete. For freelancers, time is money, becomes a mantra.
What is an Employee?
Google defines employment as follows: “Employment is a relationship between two parties, usually based on a contract where work is paid for, where one party, which may be a corporation, for-profit, not-for-profit organization, co-operative or other entity is the employer and the other is the employee.” So, what does this mean? Basically, as an employee you are bound to the company you got hired by. The work often has benefits that can assist you in other aspects of your life.
The main thing is that being employed gives you a sense of stability. You are a part of an organization; you have others to help you. You have been hired to complete a specific task and that is your job day in and day out. Sounds mundane to some but to others, it is the perfect environment that allows people to feel like they are part of something bigger than themselves as well as providing job and income security.
What’s the Point of Defining the two?
The main concept behind splitting the two workers up is that each type of work requires a particular type of person. There are many intricate differences between the two worker styles. In the case of a freelancer, these types of individuals are self-sufficient and flourish in an environment that is absent of any type of management. They do not like being hounded or smothered by the looming eye of a potential judgmental manager.
Freelancers are strong when they work by themselves; they understand what their limit is and how they want to complete projects. Time management for a freelancer needs to be good though. Without proper time management and discipline, it will be very difficult for a person to fit into this role. Freelancers are also people that can juggle and handle multiple different jobs at a time. Freelancers are comfortable in isolation and can focus and complete any task at hand.
In the opposite corner, you have the worker that is an employee. This type of work requires some stability and structure to their world. How many times have you heard a person say they cannot function without a particular routine? Certain people need to complete a ritual of sorts or need structure to complete the task at hand. The reason this type of person works well with direction is that they hyper-focus on a particular aspect of the job, and perfect it to the point where they can perform the tasks in their sleep.
Yes, the employee can manage and maintain certain elements of their job, but there are some cases where they do not have the answer and then turn to a manager. Having a manager helps the employee with direction and how to react to a particular instance. The strength behind having an employee is he/she is a dedicated worker to your business that will work diligently on the task given to them.
Both types of workers are extremely important for a business but require vastly different types of personalities to fill each role. These are the main differences between the two; but what else is different about these types of workers?
What Does Stability Look Like to Each Worker?
Stability for a freelancer used to be a risky business. There was a time where there was no guarantee that a client would renew a contract with the freelancer which would be detrimental to the freelancer. However, currently, with a pandemic going on, the position of freelancers has strengthened. Currently, freelancers are in a strong position especially if they have built a reputation for themselves.
The reason freelancers’ position has strengthened is that a lot of companies have gone remote recently which helps freelancers because they have experience working remotely. Most companies will be looking at people that have experience with time management and the ability to work without being managed. An independent worker is crucial in a world where people can work from anywhere in the world. So yes, there is still a chance that freelancers will have clients that will not renew contracts, but there are far more remote jobs available, and once you are an established freelancer, steady work can become the norm.
Stability for employees has become rockier; in the past, a contract was signed by both the employee and employer which guarantees that the employee’s job is secured. Recently employees can have a stable job if they can adapt to their situation and maybe are not required to work on-site. When the pandemic hit, lots of companies started retrenching employees and closed for months. People lost their jobs and could not recover because of how much money was lost. So, stability has slightly shifted, but an employee has a stable position that offers many rewards and opportunities.
Freelancers vs. Employees to grow your online business?
In terms of freelancers, there are a few ways in which they can assist your business and help it grow. Below will be some examples of how freelancers can help your online business grow.
The focus of the core fundamentals of your business.
Having a freelancer help with a section of your project allows for you to focus on the important pillars of your project. Think of it like this, you have three rings, biggest to smallest going towards the middle; the center ring is the pillar of your business. As you start branching out towards things that do not core elements of your business; you can start outsourcing that work to a freelancer. By doing so, your business can move forward in each section, and this will allow you to focus on the foundation of your business.
Reduce labor costs and overhead expenses.
Plain and simple, outsourcing to a freelancer has the potential to be a cheaper and more viable option for your business by cutting costs and allowing you as a business owner to pour funds into other areas of your business, further cutting overall costs.
Access to new opportunities and resources
Working with people from around the world brings in different perspectives on how to tackle or solve problems. This newfound perspective can change the way you do business as a company and may open doors that were otherwise closed to you as a company.
Freelancers vs. Employees – How do Employees Help Your Company?
So how do employees help your business? What can they provide your company, and how will it benefit your business?
Brings a human element to your business.
The human element to a business is key and having long term good employees can work well for the growth and presentation of your businesses brand. Long term, committed employees will often bring better results than short term, freelancers, because they are committed to you and the business that provides them with job and income security.
Training and how employees perform give the company a competitive edge.
Whether you want to acknowledge it or not, how your employees are perceived by the public and other businesses will be how your company is portrayed. By training your employees you give them the tools to improve their skills, and this improves the flow of business and how things are handled. Your company is growing, so you are getting a competitive edge. This competitive edge makes you stand out to others which brings in more business for your company.
Why do companies prefer freelancers?
- A cheaper solution for a high skill that would otherwise cost more in their country or local space.
How to effectively manage remote employees?
- Set expectations.
- Be organized and flexible.
- Remember to listen and respond accordingly.
- Emphasize communication.
Why do businesses prefer to hire freelance copywriters?
- Flat rate jobs with fixed results are easily budgeted.
- No vacations, sick pay, or health benefits every month.
- A business does not have enough support to add a position for the job, so they outsource instead to cut costs.
- Most freelance copywriters charge cheaper prices.
If you're looking for online platforms where you can outsource work to, these are some of the top choices to look into:
When it comes to freelancers vs. employees to grow your online business, both offer benefits to your business and help it grow in many ways. If the project is a smaller, short term one then a freelancer is probably more suited to what you need. Whereas, if the project is a long term, larger one then you should consider hiring an employee instead.