Full-time permanent vs. Freelance
Thread poster: skyblue

skyblue  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:55
Member (2006)
English to Korean
+ ...
Feb 10, 2007

I used to work for this company for about two years and they laid me off because they didn't have much work for me. Since then, for the last five years, I have been working for them happily as a contractor. Last Tuesday, they contacted me asking if I would be interested in coming back as a full-time employee again, and when would be good time to discuss about this over the phone.

I said I would be happy to go back and gave him my convenient hours for him to reach me and to discuss about that employment possibility. Till now, I haven't heard from him. Thus the hours I gave him are not any more valid.

They may have changed their mind and not want to hire me any more as their employee, or he might be simply busy with something. What do you think?

Anyway, meanwhile, I am having time to rethink over this offer. Is it really better for me to go back to the regular full-time employee? I will probably be able to make $10k more by going back. And they will provide me with lots of technical training. Working as a freelance is definately really hard, but I have to admit I have been thoroughly enjoying my freelance jobs. In terms of work flow, I have quite stable work flow and don't have to worry much about it. I still look for new clients, but not because I don't have work to do, but because I want to meet new and better clients. I have this prospect that my business will become really good in the very near future. But it is also true that I have been feeling physically exhausted juggling so many different clients and jobs.

It is anyway bothering me not knowing what they are thinking, whether they are going to ask me to come back or wether they have retrieved their offer.

[Edited at 2007-02-11 02:50]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 19:55
English to Russian
+ ...
How do you mean "you gave them convinient hours"? Feb 10, 2007

skyblue wrote:
I said I would be happy to go back and gave him my convenient hours for the week.


Dear skyblue, this is another interesting twist in your business decisions... Never heard of a "convinient hours" condition imposed by a prospective full-time staff employee. I guess they might be as puzzled as I am. Or did you mean the time for the interview or meeting with HR?

Guaranteed income (better be a decent one), stability, family health insurance (a very big deal in the U.S. and a very serious thing to consider especially if you are a single mother or the only family member that can obtain such insurance), normal weekends or guaranteed overtime, paid vacations, in your case paid training - those are the pluses of a full-time work. Minuses are obvious. Weigh them against the no less obvious risks and pluses of freelancing in relation to your current status and realistic prospectives and make your choice. What more can we say?

Good luck in any case.
Irene


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skyblue  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:55
Member (2006)
English to Korean
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
sorry for not being clear Feb 10, 2007

Dear IreneN,

I am sorry that I was not clear there. I meant convenient hours for the company to reach me in that week to discuss on that matter.

This may sound obvious when somebody else asks, but when it is your own case, it is not really that obvious which one is better.

[Edited at 2007-02-10 20:58]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 19:55
English to Russian
+ ...
Of course Feb 10, 2007

Maybe I am simplifying things but for me it was clear from the beginning - striving towards and fighting with my claws and teeth for Freedom! always pushing the other way from a cubical or an office complimented by a manager given instead of a manager chosen or no managers at all... Freedom!:-)

In any case, I have only risked my own well-being and the situation might have been different were I responsible for a family. All I can say is that today I'm very happy being a freelancer but it didn't come easy.

Again, best of the luck,
Irene


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Barbara Cochran, MFA  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:55
Spanish to English
+ ...
Think Twice Feb 11, 2007

I'd think twice before going back to work for this company full-time. They sound kind of wishy-washy to me since they let their negotiations with you to come back fall by the wayside. Think of all the good (hopefully) relationships you've established with your other freelance clients through a lot of effort on your part-you'd have to give most of that up. Personally, I find it more interesting to have a variety of assignments and clients than doing the same thing, day in, day out, for an employer. Most people prefer being their own boss, anyway, and having more control over what they do and will accept to do. You should know by now (you siad you have a steady flow of work) whether it's financially and otherwise feasible for you to be a freelancer.

[Edited at 2007-02-11 03:01]

[Edited at 2007-02-11 03:09]


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Rustam Nasyrov  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 20:55
English to Russian
+ ...
Are you sure this will not happen again? Feb 11, 2007

Skyblue, are you sure that after some time they (the company) won't have laid you off again saying they don't have much work for you? Both you and the company can't predict anything. They probably have some project to implement and there's no guarantee that after its competion they will get another one. Will you re-start freelancing as a newcomer, when all of your valuable contacts are gone?

[Edited at 2007-02-11 08:47]


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 02:55
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
human condition.... Feb 11, 2007

skyblue wrote: ... What do you think? .... Is it really better for me to go back to the regular full-time employee? ...It is anyway bothering me not knowing what they are thinking, whether they are going to ask me to come back or wether they ...


It was a sobering lesson for me and it took me several tries to master it: people do things for THEIR ... and not for my reasons and motives.

regards and I think you should stick to your present status. And lighten up on this company in terms of payload.

[Edited at 2007-02-11 23:29]


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skyblue  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:55
Member (2006)
English to Korean
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Staying... Feb 11, 2007

Thank you, collegues, for all your advise.

I am going to write to the company tonight and let them know that I am content staying as a freelance and will continue providing my help to them whenever they need. I will also inform that my rate has gone up this year and ask them to consider a raise. That way, they wouldn't feel too uncomfortable in case they changed their mind in hiring me as a FT, and I will be happy to get a raise, too.


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Harry Hermawan  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 07:55
Member (2005)
English to Indonesian
Very business-wise of you... Feb 12, 2007

skyblue wrote:

Thank you, collegues, for all your advise.

I am going to write to the company tonight and let them know that I am content staying as a freelance and will continue providing my help to them whenever they need. I will also inform that my rate has gone up this year and ask them to consider a raise. That way, they wouldn't feel too uncomfortable in case they changed their mind in hiring me as a FT, and I will be happy to get a raise, too.



Wish I was in your shoes...being able to choose and having a potential employer to wait on.

But, then again freelancing are great hours, "free" and gives you business-wise perspectives.

Full time employment is sometimes annoying, but hey, you're working for someone else, and the money is always there.

Good luck on the waiting.


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xxxCMJ_Trans
Local time: 02:55
French to English
+ ...
a word of warning.... Feb 12, 2007

Dear Skyblue,
You seem to have made your mind up already but allow me to offer you my advice all the same.

If you really wanted an objective view about whether to stay freelance or go back to a permanent job, then I suspect you wouldn't have selected a forum made up almost exclusively of freelancers to put your question. The majority of people on this site are freelancers and most seem happy with their lot. Some because they have other responsibilities and like working from home, others because they prefer their own company, etc. It is VERY unlikely that they would recommend that you return to a full-time desk job.

A more objective view would be to say that your choice really depends on the sort of person you are. If you have a home to run and kids to look after, then maybe the flexibility of freelancing is your scene. Have no illusions, however, you get no job security and sometimes you have to work all hours to meet a tight deadline.

If, on the other hand, you are gregarious, like meeting people, knocking around ideas and need the discipline of getting up regularly every morning and setting off for the office, if you like the security of a salary that turns up like clockwork at the end of the month, a health scheme, pension scheme and paid holidays, then maybe the day job is the thing.

I was a staffer for many years before totally changing profession. At the moment I am sort of freelancing as a consultant. Frankly, I miss the company, I miss the travel (though not everybody gets that) and I miss the social interaction and networking. But that's my temperament. I wanted more time for myself but I am paying for it in other ways.

If I am telling you all this, it's because I think you need to look inside yourself before you decide: maybe the permanent job even has career prospects (promotion, branching out into another line...). Or maybe your family truly comes first.

I am pretty sure you will stay with freelancing because it was freelancers that you turned to for advice..... but it is who and what you are that is the clue


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