- A new survey by Payoneer, a global payment-processing firm, found that most freelancers are under 40, but that older freelancers charge more for their services. The Payoneer survey focused on the state of affairs of freelancers, their earnings and demographics. Respondents included 21,000 freelancers from 170 countries.
- Other key findings in the survey show that freelancers charge an average hourly·rate of $19. More than 80% of respondents handle one to three jobs at a time, and nearly half of the respondents work a 30-to-50 hour week. Perhaps unsurprisingly, freelancers who provide legal services charge the most for their work, around $28 an hour.
- The survey also breaks down the hourly earnings by job category. Following providers of legal services, the next highest wage earners are in IT ($21) and engineering and manufacturing ($21). Administrative and customer support workers are paid the lowest, averaging $11 per hour.
As the contingent workforce grows, employers will need to be aware of the value of hired-out work. The jobs listed in the study complete a full range of business-critical tasks, which just goes to show how normalized hiring freelance work has become.
The range of freelance charges are closely aligned with what employees in the same fields earn. And since most freelancers were once employees, they know what the going rates are for their skills. Employers should be ready to negotiate prices for freelancers' services and look for the most skilled, rather than the least expensive, if they want to remain competitive in the field.
While many freelancers are under 30, it's older workers who are driving the gig economy, according to a Mavenlink study. Some older workers need to keep working, but prefer the independence freelance work allows. Others need to work to supplement their income, but also want the flexibility that makes freelancing appealing.