Whether you have a job or you are in-between positions, you might be considering doing some odd jobs on the side. Working as an independent contractor can have some tremendous benefits and also challenges that you will want to know before you jump in. Here are the biggest pros and cons to working for yourself.
What is an Independent Contractor?
An independent contractor is a worker in any industry that does a job for a company on a limited basis. As a self-employed worker, you will do jobs under contract without being a full- or part-time employee, skipping all the onboarding and commitment to a long-term job. Independent contractors can do all kinds of work, from design and craftsman jobs, software programming, to homecare services and even healthcare shifts.
Benefits of Being Self-Employed
Working a job on the side lets you earn that extra cash during your free time. Being self-employed can be very lucrative and offer a lot of freedom. Here are some of the biggest benefits to being an independent contractor in your industry.
No more being stuck to the first, second or third shift unless you prefer it that way. You can typically work with clients to fit the jobs into your schedule and their timeline. You decide what days you want to work. However, as a successful independent contractor, you will want to be upfront and follow through with the shift you agreed to on any given job. Just because you have flexibility doesn’t mean you should be vague or fail to follow through. But, if you want the freedom to work on odd hours of the day or take off a few days in the middle of the week, you can plan that into your own schedule.
When you are independently contracted, you don’t have the overhead of a bigger company dictating what you charge and what you can make. You can set your own hourly rates based on your skill level and experience. This means you can often make more per hour than you would when working for a larger company. You will also have the freedom to make as much work as you are able to handle, as long as you are able to attract the jobs.
Control Over Clientele
When you work for a company as an employee, you might get stuck working for a boss or coworkers that are frustrating and treat you rudely. As an independent contract, you choose which clients you work with. If a client is treating you poorly or being very difficult to work for, you can choose to never take that job again.
You won’t be trapped into jobs by a larger company that only cares about their bottom line. Of course, you should complete the promised project before giving a bad client the cold shoulder. The best contractors always follow through as professionals. But, you have the freedom to turn down jobs that aren’t paying enough for your value or seem like they are going to be difficult to work with.
If you are already working a job, your paycheck is limited to what they offer. You can pick up jobs on the side as an independent contractor and make more money. This is why people pick up the personal shopping or driving gigs. It’s easy enough to work a few quick jobs during your time off and make some extra money. When you can pick up jobs for your line of work and make better rates because of your experience, you will make much better money. Rather than get paid bottom dollar for an easy side gig, you want to look for quick jobs as an independent contractor that pays a fair rate for your skill.
Independent Contractors are a growing force within the global workforce. It’s made up of people who often choose the best quality of life. These people get to choose when they work, where they work and for how long they will work there. Freedom starts with how you approach your day and how you control the time you have.
Challenges of Being Self-Employed
Being self-employed sounds great, right? But, in the back of your head, you know it isn’t all roses and daisies. There is a reason many employees choose to stick with overarching companies that control their work. Being an independent contractor does have challenges.
The problem is, if you are highly skilled or well-educated, those jobs aren’t always just floating around. It takes a lot of effort sometimes to keep your schedule full and the work can be inconsistent. If you are spending a lot of time looking for jobs and submitting an application, then you are essentially working for free. When you do get jobs, you need to get enough of them to make up for that time you spent drumming up the business. This is a bigger concern for an independent contractor because the jobs you are pursuing are often shorter. You do a lot of footwork for smaller jobs and this can eat into your hourly rates quickly.
Sometimes schedules can be complicated and deadlines aren’t clear. If your client has expectations, they might not communicate well and then get angry with you. It can really hurt your client’s company if you aren’t on time for your shift or job. It can be hard to schedule one client, let along a number of clients with different job requirements and shift times. As an independent contractor, it can be challenging to keep track of work and keep all clients happy.
You do have to be careful who you work for as an independent contractor. A job might turn out to be an unsafe environment. A client might turn out to have quite different intentions than they are claiming. As a self-employed worker, you are going to have to check things out to make sure you aren’t walking into a bad situation.
Clients can sometimes express interest and then change on a dime. You can pour a lot of time into planning things out for their job and then they could just cancel the job. If no one is holding their feet to the fire, they might choose not to pay you for initial services. You have to protect yourself from clients that are trying to get free work or don’t stay committed to their independent contractors.
As an independent worker, another major concern is getting paid on time. Many clients will send your timesheets or invoices to their billing department, but it could be weeks or months before you see money. Different clients are going to have different timelines for paying. When money doesn’t show up on time, you might have to hunt down the check. This can be a big-time suck that bites into your rates as you spend time looking for money you’ve already worked for.
Independent Contract Work through Quinable
There are solutions to help you skirt these issues! If you are working for a platform like Quinable, you can find solutions to help make your independent contracting work easier. Become a successful self-employed worker by picking up jobs on the side with confidence.
Get your professional profile in front of employers looking for independent contractors. You won’t have to search all over for new jobs when you can apply for the ones that fit in a singular platform. You can show off any credentials or work experience to help employers pick you as the ideal candidate. If you do form a solid working relationship, they will be able to check on your availability whenever they have a new job available.
You sign the tax forms and keep your numbers straight. Stay in the good graces of the IRS without the hassle of collecting a million different job stubs come tax time. We track your numbers for easy reporting.
Both talent and clients are in the system, making it easier to report issues and track problems. You can rest assured that the clients on Quinable will be held to a standard.
Cut out the middleman so you aren’t losing money. Without a true 3rd party involved, you have the freedom to work directly with companies and organizations that want to hire you. You can set rates and accept job offers without pressure from a different party.
Peace of Mind
You won’t have to worry about a company refusing to pay or flaking on a job. If you are hired to work on Quinable, you will get paid for the work you do. We help companies feel confident in your abilities to perform, and we help professionals feel confident in being paid for their services.
With the Quinable app, you can pick up jobs whenever they fit. You will be able to set your own hours and choose the clients you want. Best of all, it’s all on a simple app that helps you track jobs and keep a straightforward schedule as a self-employed worker.
With Quinable, you can start working as an independent healthcare worker without facing many of the common challenges self-employed professionals tend to face. If you are thinking about picking up some jobs on the side, join Quinable today and start earning with confidence!