Business seasonality and an increasingly diversified set of skills requirements are driving a boom in freelancers being engaged by SMEs, a new report has found.
The latest MYOB SME Snapshot has found that 89 per cent of businesses that used a freelancer in the past six months are likely to do so again.
A need for flexibility is the chief reason for employing freelance workers, stated by just under half (47 per cent) of surveyed businesses. This is closely followed ( at 41 per cent) by a need to access different skill sets.
“The changing shape of Australia’s workforce and the widespread increase of shared economy websites across all industries like AirTasker and AirBnB has meant businesses have become more comfortable with a different approach to talent acquisition,” said MYOB CEO Tim Reed.
“Small businesses can tap into a global workforce available around the clock with a broad range of specialist skills that can help improve and develop their business no matter the length of tenure required.”
However the biggest detractor of hiring freelancers is ultimately the intimate nature of smaller businesses, with 26 per cent of business owners stating the biggest disadvantage of hiring freelancers is their perceived lack of understanding of the business.
A further 10 per cent complain that freelancer payment processes are overly complex.
“Ultimately, freelancers can be a great addition to your current employee base and can provide high-quality, specialised services when required,” said Mr Reed.
“Many also run their own business, relying on repeat business and referrals, which means it will be in their best interest to provide the best service possible for you and your business.”