Should you go part-time or full-time?

In an online freelancer’s world, one has a choice of either going for a full time job or going part-time.  In this post,  I will talk about the pros and cons of each type of job.

A. Part-time Job – This type of job is usually project-based and will last for the duration of a project.  These jobs are considered as “stints” and normally lasts a few days, weeks, or months, depending on the scope of work assigned to you.  As with full-time jobs, part-time jobs have their pros and cons.

Pros :

  • This type of job usually offers a higher rate per hour.
  • You will be able to take in more than one project for different clients at a time.
  • You will be able to work at any time of your convenience as you own your time.  Time management is key.
  • You will be exposed to a lot of clients/buyers, most of whom will gladly recommend you to their friends if you do a good job.  They will also usually come back to you for the same service, or a similar one, should they be satisfied with the work you did for them in the past.
  • There is an abundance of this type of job on the internet.

Cons:

  • As I mentioned earlier, this type of job only lasts for a short period of time.  This would mean that you would have to constantly bid on or apply for job posts to get your next stint.
  • Because you are constantly applying for jobs, you are in constant competition with online freelancers from all over the world.  This competition may prompt you to lower your rate, at one point or another in your career, just to get a job.
  • You have to build a reputation in order for you to charge a higher rate and to have an edge over the competition.  You should be considered an expert at what you do.
  • Because you are exposed to a lot of clients, you will also be exposed to a lot of different personalities, some of which may be a clash with your own.
  • Because payment for this type of job is usually project-based, you run a higher risk of meeting clients who will run off with your work and not pay you at all.
  • You don’t know when your next pay check will be.
  • You have no job tenure.

B. Full-time Jobs – As with traditional jobs, this type of online job will last as long as your client/employer still wants you.  The following are the pros and cons of a full-time online job.

Pros:

  • This type of job is long term and you have a chance to grow with the employer /company who hired you.
  • As this job is long term, you won’t feel the need to constantly apply for other online jobs.
  • You get a guaranteed paycheck at the same time every month.
  • You get pay increases and bonuses based on your performance.
  • You can request for time off during holidays and emergencies and know that when you come back, you’d still have a job.  This, however, will depend on your employer and whether you asked permission properly and gave enough notice.
  • Depending on your employer, you could get benefits like paid leaves, bonuses, etc.
  • As you are only working for one client at a time, you don’t have to deal with a lot of different personalities and time zones.

Cons:

  • You are only limited to work with one client/employer at a time.
  • This type of job usually pays lower than hourly, project-based jobs.
  • As with other full-time jobs, you don’t own your time.  You have to work a fixed number of hours, on fixed number of days, per week.
  • Depending on your job description, you have the possibility of being stuck doing one thing day in and day out.  Of course, this doesn’t hold true if you have a very diverse job description, like when you’re a VA.
  • This type of job is not as common as part-time jobs, but is quickly getting popular.

Based on the pros and cons I presented above, you can then choose whether you would rather work for a full-time or part-time job in your career as a freelancer.  Of course, there are a lot of other factors that would affect your choice – like your lifestyle and your personality.  Some people thrive on change and enjoy the challenges presented by part-time jobs, while some people would prefer the stability and security of a full-time job.  Whatever you end up choosing to do, just know that in this career there are no absolutes.

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