Freelancing has become the career of 55 million American people as of 2016 and as a group, freelancers earned about one trillion dollars last year.
According to a study commissioned by Upwork and the Freelancers Union, referenced above, more people enter the freelancing market by choice, not by necessity. Many of them believe that in this new economy, there is more job security in having a wide range of clients than having an employer.
Another factor that’s contributed to this substantial growth is technology. It’s just easier now to work remotely, as a freelancer, and to market your skills to a huge audience, if the right strategies are utilized.
So, just what types of jobs are moving from desks to freelance enterprises? The simple answer is that this is occurring in all career sectors. Here is a look at 10 career fields that are moving significantly into the “gig” economy. Some may be a bit surprising, and some are the direct result of the growth of entrepreneurship.
1. Designers and Developers
As entrepreneurs begin their startups, they’re hiring freelance site design and development professionals, in order to have a web presence that provides a great user experience (UX). According to Upwork, freelancing in these two fields grew by over 100% in 2016.
2. Content Marketers
Large enterprises have marketing departments. Smaller businesses cannot afford them. But these little guys also know that exceptional content will determine their positions on social media, the quality of their sites and blogs, the native advertising efforts that must occur, etc. They are relying more and more on freelance content marketers to design exciting and compelling marketing strategies on the web.
3. Accountants and Tax Specialists
Again, as the freelance economy grows, so does the need for tax advisors and accountants. Many who have worked in the corporate world are now seeing great potential in “hanging out their own shingles.”
This field is rather exploding, as entrepreneurs need blog maintenance, social media profiles, and other forms of writing.
Add to this the fact that many writers establish their own blogs and monetize them quite successfully. And with the explosion of online news organizations, and the decline of print news media, more and more journalists are turning to freelance work.
5. Insurance Investigators/Adjusters
Traditionally, these individuals worked for large agencies. Now, they are finding that they can hire themselves out on a freelance basis and have greater control over their schedules.
6. Electrical Engineers
This seems like an odd sector for freelancing. However, these pros bring skills to the marketplace that are hot right now. Business News Daily reports that freelancing in this profession grew by 51% in 2016, largely due to the rise in the Internet-of-things industry.
7. Personal Assistants
These can be local and physical or virtual. Growth was 53% during 2016, primarily because entrepreneurs and other busy executives need tasks completed that are either personal or non-essential.
Tutoring is an in-demand freelance job. There is always a need for help for struggling students at all levels. Tutors’ hours are not as flexible as many other freelancers (usually evenings and weekends), but they can demand as much as $30/hour.
Teachers who are tired of the classroom routine often leave that desk behind and set out on their own. And, they can also become entrepreneurs, setting up their own tutoring services and hiring others.
9. Software/App Developers
A lot of people have great ideas for games and mobile-first businesses, but are not techies themselves. There is a strong market for freelancers who can help them, and lots of opportunities for growing a clientele.
10. Network/Security Analysts
With the growing concern for cybersecurity, businesses, even many unlikely ones, understand the critical need for security. They may have an in-house IT staff but no one with specific expertise on network security. As well, small businesses with no IT staff understand the need to protect customer financial information. Hackers are now targeting small businesses, because they are easier. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is a high-growth sector for the next 10 years.
This post was originally published on: Forbes.