One of the easiest ways to make a success of home working is to become a freelancer. Freelancers typically are in the creative areas of work, writing or art, but more and more companies are hiring freelance workers to do their books or even their typing and other correspondence which can all be done online. A freelance life suits a mum who wants to work from home part time down to the ground because as long as deadlines are met, no one really minds when the work is done.
Getting into freelancing can be achieved in a variety of ways. Watching online job ads is the first and most obvious way. There you will find people who want people like you – perhaps a business wants secretarial help for just a few hours a week but doesn’t want to go to the expense of employing through a temp agency, or someone wants help in the house or for other tasks on an ad hoc basis. The freelancer is the answer to these problems and although each job might be small, they soon add up.
Self employed work has no guarantees, but if you network your freelance abilities, you will soon find a niche out there for you. There are various websites dedicated to freelancers – search online by googling ‘freelance’ and you will be amazed at the opportunities out there. You may find enough home based work there to keep you busy, but if not then there are lots of other ways to find enough to do. Most local newspapers have pages of job opportunities, but the dedicated freelancer will look further than the obvious. Look in the other adverts for people who are offering their services and get in touch. Make sure that you genuinely have the skills you would need to help them – for example, don’t contact hairdressers unless you have a qualification – and then leave your name and details with them if they don’t need you right now. If you don’t hear from them in about a month to six weeks, get back in touch. Eventually you will strike lucky with a time when they could do with a hand and usually in this kind of freelance way you can build up a nice business, working for someone else but being essentially self employed.
Some mums who are at home with children freelance at their old jobs. If yours was something that can be done part time and as a home worker, most employers will be happy to keep your experience in the company. As a freelancer you will not be in any pension scheme and you will invoice for your time. This means you will be less expensive to employ, as the business for which you provide a service will not be paying the employers’ pension contribution or NIC either. This means for them that they have the best of both worlds; an experience worker at a cheaper price. Before you leave work to have children, explore this possibility for later.