Being self-employed has a lot of perks, so it’s easy to see why so many people are choosing to become freelancers. You can select what your working hours will be, pick and choose what work you want to take on, and can remotely work from anywhere in the world. As exciting and liberating life as a freelancer can be, it doesn’t come without its difficulties. There are specific things you will need to watch out for, such as making sure your tax returns are correct and made on time, marketing yourself, and sourcing work. If you have recently become a freelancer or are considering this path, here are some useful tips to help you make it work.
Create a Schedule
One thing you might find tough at first is getting into a good working routine. One of the benefits of being a freelancer is that you get to decide when you work, but if you don’t set yourself a schedule, you might struggle to stay motivated or meet your deadlines. First, determine what time of day you work best, are you a morning person or a night owl? Then choose what hours you will work between, for example, 10 am – 6 pm. Sticking to this schedule will help you to keep on top of your workload and stay motivated.
Find a Good Workspace
Some freelancers prefer to work from home, others prefer cafes or using a shared office space or hot desking. If you are going to work from home, make sure you’re creating a separate workspace from where you hang out and relax. Choose a room or corner to turn into your home office, as this separate space will help you get into the mindset to work away from other distractions. If you don’t think working from home is right for you, look into shared workspaces in your town/city centre. Companies like Clockwise provide serviced offices that are ideal for freelancers and start-up businesses alike.
Keep on Top of Your Accounts
One of the drawbacks of becoming a freelancer is the extra admin, and keeping on top of your accounts and figuring out how much tax you need to pay is an example of this. It’s essential to keep up to date records of your expenses and keep proof of transactions such as receipts and invoices. You will need these records to complete your tax returns each year, and you must do this on time. If you can afford to, take on an accountant to help you manage your bookkeeping or use specific accounting software.
If you’re going to source work and increase your income, you’ll need to dedicate time to promoting yourself. Using social media is a very useful tool as a freelancer, particularly sites such as LinkedIn. You should also have a website dedicated to your work where you can display a portfolio and have clients leave reviews. Beyond this, make sure you’re attending any networking events for the opportunity to speak to current and potential clients face-to-face. People will be more likely to want to work with you if they know you and feel comfortable with you.
Are you ready to become a freelancer and take control of your life and career? Use these tips to help you succeed!