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Ten Things You Should Know About Being Self-Employed


There are benefits to getting yourself self-employed. For one thing, you would no longer have to report to a boss and pretend you like him or her. You no longer have to attend those grueling long meetings where talking in circles becomes a norm. Perhaps you’ve realized that your dream was to be your own boss and wake up and create a scheduled that works better for you.


If you’d thought about it for a while and are seriously considering the move, here are 10 things you ought to know before making the transition.


1. Cash Flow

Several start-ups end up with a bunch of debts because of having to rely a lot on credit. Before you even start your venture, make sure you’ve saved enough to get you through the first three months to a year of being self-employed. Do your research and find out the costs you will need to cover while establishing your brand. Develop a business plan. Regardless of how small or grand you envision your business to be, a business plan is a must! Successful companies are what they are now by always planning ahead.


2. Unstable Income

Most especially during the first few months of launch, you won’t be earning as much as you used to. You should think about how comfortable you’d be with the idea that your earnings won’t be consistent. Working at a full-time job guarantees that you receive a fixed amount every payroll unless you’re absent or went on vacation leave. Once you go self-employed, the revenue you generate will depend on varying factors - the number of clients you have, expenses, and taxes to name some. Not everything is within your control and it boils down to guts and grit to make it. As you’re starting out, don’t expect funds or clients to start flowing in right away. There are businesses who take a while before they saw a real lift in revenue.


3. Taxes

You will start processing taxes on your own once you become self-employed. Know when the cycle begins and what type of forms you will need to fill out. If you’ve followed Step 1 accordingly this is no longer a surprise. If you find it difficult to take in, you will need to decide if you have to hire someone like an accountant to get this done.


4. Work Place

Where do you get to work? Depending on the industry you’re venturing into, decide whether you would prefer to work within the comforts of your home or if you’d rent out an office. Make sure that you are equipped with the right tools. A basic setup includes an internet connection, computer, and phone. When making your choice, consider if the area is conducive to work. Is the place quiet enough for you to think or take in calls? Whichever you choose will have an impact on cost and revenue (insurance and marketability wise which will be explained later on). Many will think they can get work done at the local coffee shop, but this will not be a great place to make and receive calls. Sure, you can step outside to take that call, but if you live in a wintery climate, the cold may give you second thoughts.


5. Insurance

Majority of people (58%) who are self-employed get to work from home according to Office of National Statistics. If you’re opting to do the same, do a quick check on your insurance coverage. Home insurance usually does not cover business equipments. If you opt to hire employees, additional fees may be involved. Educate yourself, make sure you’re protected and make sure it’s the right choice.


6. Filing system

You will soon realize that there is a lot of paperwork involved in running a business. Stay organized. Keep similar documents together. Come up with a system that would allow you to easily find and store documents. Invest in tools that could assist you in keeping your files secure.

7. Marketability

Whether you opted to go self-employed or set up a limited company, it is still a business! And for any kind of business, it’s important to get it out there. Befriend Social Media and create accounts on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. If you have a retail space and or work out of a building, make sure to register your business with Google as well!


8. Website

You might be thinking why isn’t the website listed under Marketability? Having a website is not just for attracting clients but is your business card in the virtual world. It has more weight in terms of how you’d like to grow or expand your scope. When someone thinks about hiring you or your company, the first thing that they will do is to search in Google. It is absolutely necessary to have a website which represents you! Have your portfolio for everyone to see. Get your contact information included. All information you have here should be updated. I can’t emphasize this enough. What you have on the website represents what you can do. Not having it updated is more or less saying goodbye to making it on your own.


9. Lifestyle Impact

Sadly, it’s not all fun being self-employed. What you earn is directly influenced by your efforts and how your business stands out against other similar companies. Self-discipline is vital in being successful. Set a daily routine. How long should you set your working hours? When you are on holiday, who takes over for you? It requires a certain level of sacrifice. If you want to make it big, you need to get the approval and help of your family and friends. If they’re not supportive of where you’d like to be, it may damage not only your social life but shake up your foundation as well. Are you ready for this kind of change?


10. Risk

Yes, being self-employed carries a risk for your career and lifestyle. It’s important that throughout the journey you also consider what makes you happy. Will you be happier if you go self-employed? Are you up for this challenge? If you answered Yes then go ahead and make the move. Only consider getting self-employed if you believe it is something you are passionate about and absolutely believe in. Don’t make it as an excuse to run away from responsibility.


If you’d like to know more about working from home and getting the guide to self-employment, you might want to read on to this article - Working From Home – The Self-Employed Guide. Feel free to explore our website for more tips and tricks on Self-Employment.


If you have a question about self-employment and what the self-employment program through Vocational Rehabilitation is all about, please contact us! At Portals LLC, we endeavor to empower our clients to reach their employment and independent living goals.

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