This article was published in cooperation with the recruitment website Bayt.com
Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – Professionals in 2020 have been greatly affected by the Coronavirus pandemic that has caused closures and forced many employees to work entirely remotely.
As a result, freelance work has grown in popularity among both professionals and companies in the past year.
However, what is driving professionals in the Middle East to turn to entrepreneurship? Do companies use freelance workers? What about the most important skills these professionals should have?
A survey entitled “Self-employment in the Middle East and North Africa 2021” reveals the opinions of the increasing number of professionals who are turning to self-employment. The most important factors that drive them in this direction are achieving additional earnings (55%) and learning new skills (24%), Doing the tasks they prefer (11%) and being able to control their work schedule (7%).
The best aspects of freelancing
Professionals in the region are moving towards a more flexible lifestyle, with greater independence and new job opportunities. According to respondents, the best aspects of self-employment are exploring more career opportunities (50%), enhancing resilience (23%), improving professional-personal life balance (22%), reducing stress levels and improving health (5%).
Do companies deal with self-employed people?
As technology continues to advance, companies around the world are rapidly adapting to the way they work online, which ultimately attracts more remote talent. The majority of respondents in the survey stated that their companies deal with self-employed to a large extent (47%) and to some extent (19%), while only 17% said that their company does not use these professionals.
Self-employed people provide multiple benefits to companies, as these competencies excel at accomplishing urgent tasks within a short period of time (52%) and hiring freelance workers is more cost-effective (17%). On the other hand, companies can hire freelancers to complete tasks up to finding a full-time employee (16%) and to provide additional assistance to teams or small departments (15%).
The survey shows that self-employment is witnessing an increasing demand by professionals and companies, with 60% of respondents largely agreeing and 20% somewhat agreeing that the demand for freelancers has increased in the past year. And 88% of respondents plan to do more entrepreneurship this year.
What skills should I have?
According to respondents, the most important skills that freelancers should possess included: time management (43%), communication skills (21%), the ability to market themselves (19%), leadership skills (10%) and attention to detail (7%). .
Ways to search for self-employment
Professionals are increasingly moving to adopt a more flexible lifestyle according to their interests and preferences. Today, they have more opportunities than ever before. The survey revealed that freelancers are looking for jobs on online job sites and career platforms (72%), social media sites (12%), company websites (8%), and their network of contacts (4%).
Interestingly, finding freelance work online does not take long, as 40% of professionals find work in less than a week, 13% in less than a month, 10% within 2 to 3 months, and 20% within a period of more than 3 months. Months.
The challenges posed by self-employment
Companies in many sectors face multiple challenges in the digital world, which forces them to adapt and develop rapidly, and here comes the importance of recruiting talent from self-employed. But freelancing is not without its challenges, which include job insecurity (68%), lower salary than full-time jobs (13%), fewer opportunities to get a promotion (11%) and no fringe benefits (8%).