5 Freelance Gigs That Spiked During COVID — Will They Last?

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The workplace landscape has changed since the pandemic, with a rise in remote work and the hybrid workplace. In turn, a reassessment of the meaning of work has ensued as shown by an increase in Americans turning to freelance. An Upwork survey found that in 2022, 39% turned to freelance work or 60 million Americans.

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“With the current economic uncertainty, along with the rise of movements such as ‘The Great Resignation’ and ‘Quiet Quitting,’ many professionals are undergoing a once-in-a-generation reassessment of what it means to have a fulfilling career. Large swaths of the U.S. workforce are questioning the traditional, entrenched ways of working, and are instead seeking out alternate career pathways,” according to the Upwork survey.

Yet, while freelancing is on the rise, not all careers fare the same in terms of opportunities. A new Flexjobs 2023 Stare of Remote Freelance Jobs Report analysis where they reside and in which spaces other careers are cooling down.

The rise of remote work has helped freelancing become more accessible than ever before, said Doug Ebertowski, career expert at FlexJobs and Remote.co.

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“But as FlexJobs’ 2023 State of Remote Freelance Jobs Report shows, some career categories like communications, bookkeeping, graphic design, accounting and finance, and marketing, have grown more significantly than others,” he said. 

Ebertowski recommends and encourages workers interested in freelancing to identify freelance fields with ample opportunities, survey the market with resources like FlexJobs’ report and research any competition before setting out in their desired freelance field or service.

“Then, build a strong personal brand to help clients understand your services and expertise. Finally, plan out your finances and business expenses to build a financial cushion. These preliminary steps are critical. As a freelancer, you’re responsible for everything, so it’s imperative to do sufficient research and planning before getting started,” Ebertowski added.

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Here are the remote freelance careers that are cooling down, according to Flexjobs, with the most significant declines in 2022 in education and training, down 26%, customer service, down 21%, and medical and health, down 20%.

  • Education & Training- down 26% in 2022
  • Customer Service- down 21% in 2022
  • Medical & Health-down 20% in 2022
  • HR and Recruiting
  • Project Management

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About the Author

Yaël Bizouati-Kennedy is a full-time financial journalist and has written for several publications, including Dow Jones, The Financial Times Group, Bloomberg and Business Insider. She also worked as a vice president/senior content writer for major NYC-based financial companies, including New York Life and MSCI. Yaël is now freelancing and most recently, she co-authored  the book “Blockchain for Medical Research: Accelerating Trust in Healthcare,” with Dr. Sean Manion. (CRC Press, April 2020) She holds two master’s degrees, including one in Journalism from New York University and one in Russian Studies from Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès, France.
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