Freelancers face mixed outlook as restrictions ease

New research by IPSE shows a mixed picture for freelancers, with a quarter bouncing back from Covid, but large numbers facing an uphill battle to get back to pre-pandemic earnings.

'Self-Employed' written on blackboard

 

Forty per cent of freelancers who have been badly affected by the pandemic fear it will take over a year to return to pre-pandemic levels, according to a new study, although almost a quarter of freelancers have already bounced back.

The study by IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed) shows many of those badly affected by Covid are also worried about the impact of IR35 on their business and over a third (37%) said they were still worried about the impact of Brexit on their business.

Freelancers also had many continuing concerns about the impact of the pandemic, with 51 per cent saying they were worried about finding work or clients, over a third (37%) saying they were worried about reduced demand for their services and one in five (21%) expressing worry about increased competition from other freelancers. Over a third (36%) also said they were concerned about the possibility of a third wave. Just under a quarter (24%) said they were worried about the health impact of having to commute to client premises, almost a fifth (17%) said they were worried about the level of on-site protection available and a further fifth (20%) said they were concerned about stress levels and their mental health as the economy opens up.

However, the research shows nearly a fifth (19%) say their businesses have been largely unaffected by the pandemic. Twenty four per cent say their business has already bounced back to pre-pandemic levels and one in five (19%) expect theirs to do so within the next six months.



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