3 predictions for the freelance market

Freelancing is becoming a major part of the everyday business landscape. In the early 2000, the number of freelancers consisted of only 3 percent of the total work force. Today, that same group of freelancers has grown to nearly 20% of the total working population in Belgium, and continues to grow each year with high margins. Due to this exponential growth in the number of freelancers,  the business landscape in Belgium has also been reshaped. To make things easier for you, we have listed three predictions which you can expect as a freelancer in the future:

The freelance market is growing
Annual growth in the number of freelancers in Belgium (Deman, R. 2019)

1. More coworking spaces

The first trend we will see in the future is the large increase in the number of co-working places. Research has shown that almost 45 percent of freelancers find it difficult to work alone. At the same time, the distractions of working from home can deplete your focus, especially people with a family.

prediction for the freelance future: co-working
It’s all about pots & plants at The Maffia!

These factors will further increase the number of co-working places in the future. It gives the freelancer the ability to use the space and time whenever they want, depending on their mood and needs. In addition, the social aspect of a co-working environment is extremely important for a freelancer. This way, you can connect with anyone who is specialized in one or more skills. The Maffia has also been able to reap the benefits of co-working.
In Ghent, The Maffia is working in the same environment with numerous other companies that specializes themselves in various creative sectors. This way, one learns from each other and becomes stronger as a company or freelancer!

Lastly, the co-working place of the future will not just be a place with a good internet connection and coffee. As the demand for connected devices and technology grows, industry-related co-working tools will become a demand from the freelancer. A new generation of co-working places is on its way, and we as freelancers can only contribute to this!

2. Fewer hourly workers

The second trend in the future will be the way freelancers are paid. Hourly pay-out will fade out of the market as more freelancers are paid by the item or project they deliver. A fixed price is much more feasible way to invoice since hourly work is hard to track when you’re in an unchecked environment. This type of invoicing can lead to an increase in salary for many freelancers when they are able to work productively and efficiently.

Today, there are many applications which help the freelancer with the invoicing of their customers. As a matter of fact, The Maffia has already listed some applications which can make your life as a freelancer easier. If FOMO troubles you and want to know everything about these applications, then check out our top 5 tools for freelancers!

3. AI resilience

Automatic ordering kiosks are taking over the job from the cashier, ticket booths in train stations close due to the presence of vending machines and the commercial truck driving market is threatened by the market of self-driving cars: there is a lot of uncertainty about job security as Artificial Intelligence has a great impact on many industries. However, the freelance industry will, for the most part, remain untouched by this digital trend.

One of the most important parts of freelancing is establishing a quick connection with your client, after which the job is discussed and executed. AI will probably not play a role in this process as a human touch remains extremely important when delivering a specific expertise, said co-founder of LinkedIn Reid Hoffman in 2017.

Mr. Hoffman also said that freelancers think more proactively about market trends and refresh their skills more often than traditional employees. Freelancers are preparing for a changing future and will become even more important in the future for companies that want to make use of their specific skills.

We can conclude that the freelance market evolves every day and that the future has many developments in store for us. Ten years ago, the freelance market was almost nowhere to be found. But today, it is one of the world’s most growing industries, with all the market changes that this brings forth. Are you curious about how The Maffia breaks boundaries in the freelance market? Check out our new MaffiaMatch and find out what we’ve got in store for you!

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