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How To Evaluate A Freelance Job Offer

How To Evaluate A Freelance Job Offer

By: Aquent

LAST UPDATED: 07 March, 2024

Key Takeaways:

  • A freelance job offer involves much more than just evaluating the pay rate.
  • When looking at the benefits check the location—will this be a hybrid role or will you need to commute every day?
  • What are the outcomes, will you be able to showcase the work that you have contributed to?
  • Ask how the team is made up? Can you learn from others, will you be managing anyone?
  • Consider the value of the role—will it help build skills or potentially lead to a full-time job offer?

In the world of freelancing, getting job offers can be a mixed bag of excitement and uncertainty. You've probably done your research and thought quite a lot about your pay rate. But what about all the other aspects of a freelance job opportunity?

Every year, we help thousands of freelance Talent evaluate offers and find jobs they love. We'll break down the factors you should consider to determine if an opportunity will meet your needs.

What is the freelance work arrangement?

Understanding the work arrangement is a crucial step when considering any freelance opportunity. The term “freelance” can refer to a variety of non-permanent work situations, which is why it's vital to get clarity on the specifics of the role.

On the other hand, if you're classified as a temporary employee (contract), you'll qualify for employee benefits offered to temporary Talent. You'll also receive a regular salary with superannuation and taxes already paid. As a potential employee, it's important to enquire about the degree of flexibility in the workplace. This is especially true regarding the company's stance on remote work. To prevent long-term disappointment, be sure that the company and your future manager respect what you want with your work schedule and location.

Are freelancers eligible for paid sick leave, holidays, or annual leave?

Moreover, understanding the policies surrounding time off is also important when evaluating a freelance job offer. Knowing these policies beforehand can help you determine if your pay rate needs to account for any unpaid time off and plan your finances accordingly.

Even if you need to take some unpaid days off, you can make it work with careful planning. Say you're considering a 12-month engagement at a pay rate of $50 per hour, and you're eligible for paid sick leave but not holiday pay. If you want to take three weeks of vacation during the year, you can break down those three weeks into a per paycheck amount and set that aside each pay period, thus ensuring you have funds during your time off. Alternatively, you could factor these three weeks into your pay rate negotiation upfront. Ultimately, planning strategically to take time away from work can significantly contribute to a positive freelancing experience.

What is the value of the freelance role to your career progression?

When evaluating a freelance job offer, understanding your interest about the opportunity is paramount. If your motivation lies in performing specific types of work or enhancing your skillset, will the role offer you the space to achieve these? Ask these aspects during interviews with the hiring manager.

Another critical factor to consider is whether you're aiming to add a prestigious brand name to your resume or if you're exploring the company for a potential long-term fit. If your goal is to secure a permanent position within the organisation, ascertain whether the freelance job could serve as a stepping stone toward that objective.

Inquire about the likelihood of the role converting to full-time permanent employment and if there have been instances of other freelancers transitioning from temporary to permanent positions. While nothing is guaranteed, having this information upfront can avoid feelings of being misled or strung along later. If the role is intended to convert to a permanent position in the future, consider asking about a formalised ‘temp-to-perm' status rather than a more flexible agreement. Your clarity on these factors can significantly impact your decision-making process when assessing a freelance job offer.

“Don't hesitate to ask questions to make the right decision about an offer.”

It's important to keep in mind that the hiring process is a two-way street. As a candidate, you should feel empowered to ask questions and seek information that helps you decide whether the opportunity is right for you; just as much as the recruiter and hiring manager are deciding whether you are right for the job.

The goal is not just to land a job, but to find a work arrangement that meets your needs. Ensure you're provided with fair compensation and benefits, the role contributes to your professional goals and provides a fulfilling freelancing experience. Keep these factors in mind when assessing your next freelance job offer and you'll be well-equipped to make an informed decision.

This article was originally posted on Aquent Talent and has been adapted for the Australian market.