The Australian gig economy is thriving. According to Upwork, almost a third of Australian workers engaged in freelance work in 2015 – and that number is only growing.
Side gigs, second jobs and freelancing are some of many ways to make a little extra money using the time and resources already available to you. But is it the best option for your situation?
Let’s take a look at what’s motivating Australian freelancers, how you can get involved and whether or not side hustles are your game.
A recent survey by Australia-New Zealand on-demand staffing platform, Sidekicker, has highlighted some of the key reasons workers Down Under are choosing to pick up side gigs.
Interestingly, 73 percent of the 11,000+ respondents to Sidekicker’s survey support themselves or earn the bulk of the income in their household. They work temporary shifts on top of their permanent employment, suggesting they work two or more jobs to support themselves or their families. For some of us, it’s about making ends meet when we feel our permanent income isn’t enough or seizing full-time work isn’t coming easily.
Australians are increasingly picking up side jobs to make extra money or follow their passions.
Meanwhile, 82 percent of respondents claimed to embrace temporary, flexible gig work because it grants them the flexibility to achieve their ideal lifestyle. For some, this means they are studying or starting their own business, and therefore need the ability to scale their working hours up and down according to fluctuations in their other commitments. Kids are also a common reason to seek out short gigs, as working parents can more easily take time off for the school holidays.
The flexibility achieved through the gig economy is helping many Australians work towards their broader objectives, while still supporting themselves.
Those studying while picking up casual work might also do so in order to reinforce their education. For example, of those accepting short-term hospitality roles, 44 percent were studying hospitality and tourism management, 26 percent were training in cookery, and 13 percent were working towards service qualifications.
Others might prefer to take up side gigs to help them chase their true passion. Whether that means establishing a small business in your spare time or testing the waters of a new career using temporary work, small side gigs can help some people discover their intended course in life.
If you’re interested in pursuing a side gig for any of the above reasons, consider the different ways you can find small jobs:
Your side gig can be the perfect way to help you achieve your broader objectives.
Before you begin, take a moment to think about whether a side job is really suitable for your lifestyle. Here are a few things you should consider before looking for a gig:
If a separate gig isn’t going to work for you, it’s time to think creatively about how you can increase your take-home pay. Asking your current employer for a raise or more hours is one way to improve your income, particularly if you believe you’ve earned it.
Sometimes your upward momentum can be limited by the business, however, so you might also consider changing jobs or retraining in a higher-paying field.
Of course, the money you get to enjoy is also determined by how much is lost to your everyday expenses. Reviewing your fixed costs, negotiating with service providers and finding places to cut costs that don’t directly help you achieve your goals can make your income feel greater.
What you need to know
This information is provided by Invest Blue Limited (ABN 91 100 874 744). The information contained in this article is of general nature only and does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. Therefore, before making any decision, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice with regards to those matters and seek personal financial, tax and/or legal advice prior to acting on this information. Read our Financial Services Guide for information about our services, including the fees and other benefits that AMP companies and their representatives may receive in relations to products and services provided to you.
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