The future of work is freelance, according to a recent report from Porch. More than 16 million US residents currently work in "contingent" or "alternative" employment arrangements, including freelancers and on-demand app workers.
The tech industry already relies heavily on freelance workers, both to fill skills gaps and to save on costs. About 32% of tech industry roles are now freelance, according to the report. Facebook, Amazon, Uber, and other tech giants employ thousands of contract workers. At Google, contract workers currently outnumber full-time employees.
SEE: The future of IT jobs: A business leader's guide (Tech Pro Research)
In the next 10 years, an estimated 45% of tech roles will be freelance, the report predicted. The predictions are based on a survey from more than 1,000 employees and 291 employers across different industries. Remote work in the industry is also likely to rise, according to the report: While 21% of tech jobs are currently remote, an estimated 45% will be by 2028, it predicted.
Tech industry workers already don't plan on staying in the field long-term, the report found: 47% of tech employees surveyed said they plan to change industries in the next decade, perhaps due to the high stress and burnout rates associated with these jobs. The tech industry had the third highest number of employees who said this, after hotel, food services, and hospitality (57%) and wholesale and retail (55%).
Nearly 51% of full-time freelancers use third-party sites and apps to find work, the report found. Of the workers who use those sites, 66% said they feel satisfied with job security, 53% with income, 62% with their career path, and 72% with their work/life balance, according to the report.
The big takeaways for tech leaders:
- In the next 10 years, an estimated 45% of tech roles will be freelance. — Porch, 2018
- 51% of full-time freelancers use third-party sites and apps to find work. — Porch, 2018
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- Tech Budgets 2019: A CXO's Guide (ZDNet)
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- CXO: More must-read coverage (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
Alison DeNisco Rayome has nothing to disclose. She does not hold investments in the technology companies she covers.
Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.