You might remember: some time back in the 2000s there was this ‘Digital Bohème’ (the way Holm Friebe and Sascha Lobo defined it in 2006), which referred to some kind of disruptive or even exotic form of working, primarily for ‘young people’, who would sit behind their laptops in a café working on ‘projects’ of every imaginable caliber while sipping a latte-macchiato with *insert hip topping/flavor*. Flash forward: in the year 2021 this kind of working has basically become as regular as every other job.
Freelancing numbers are off the charts
Well, cafés might still be closed and perhaps the only fancy coffee is the one out of your own coffee-machine in your own kitchen, the current numbers of the amount of work done by freelancers are staggering. In the US alone 41% of the workforce freelanced in 2020 (up 13% since 2013!), while 53% of the Generation Z (18-22) chooses the freelancing path. Moreover, at least half of organizations worldwide (with staff of 1000+) have seen a substantial increase in their freelance workforce in the past five years (source). And, most importantly, the trend is directed skyward. Since the pandemic broke out and decided to stick around, traditional workers were pushed to explore new or more flexible career paths, which is slowly but surely rendering professional freelance jobs more common, desired and respected. So, ‘Digital Bohème’ is less ‘bohemian’ now and rather becomes a norm. But why is that?
Hybrid workforce is the (two-fold) picture of tomorrow
Freelance workers provide flexibility, which is one of the major benefits of diversifying and restructuring a company in favor of a hybrid workforce. The pandemic forced organizations to shift and quickly adjust their course turning company’s agility into the number one priority. As a result, businesses are increasingly relying on high skill freelance workers to function more efficiently. Yes, an experienced freelancer with a relevant skill set hired for specific projects can save a company a considerable amount of resources spent on retraining the current staff to match the requirements. Yes, they are flexible, reliable and bring about the desired agility.