Work defines a man, they say. However, over the years, as office ergonomics have changed from cubicles to open floor plans and standing desks, so has the definition of work or “job” to be more precise. Up until a decade ago, a ‘full-time, office-going’ job was considered – by both employers and job seekers – as a benchmark of a serious professional.
In the last few years, especially with the advent of startups and the atypical ‘startup culture’, an increasing number of the global workforce is now opting for flexible employment options, including work from home and remote working. All part of the larger umbrella of freelancing, these progressive work options have now given rise to what is famously known as the “GIG economy”.
Today, India is the largest freelancing market comprising over 10 Mn freelancers, according to a recent survey by PayPal.
Here are some facts that attest to the growth of freelancers in India:
- 41% of freelancers have witnessed a noticeable growth over the past 12 months.
- 80% of the freelancers are working with international as well as domestic clients.
- Most Indian freelancers earn an average of around INR 20 lakh ($30,000) per year.
While these numbers show a promising picture for freelancing, one of the main concerns of the freelancer is receiving payments in a safe and secure manner. This is where digital payments like PayPal are playing a key role in enabling and empowering freelancers. The company, with a global user base of 228 Mn active accounts has been bullish about the rise of freelancers in India and the opportunity it offers.
To serve this growing freelance market in India, the company has and continues to offer innovative solutions tailored for this segment- a URL payment option PayPal.me, Invoicing solutions, Seller Protection for intangibles amongst others. In order to offer enhanced convenience, PayPal recently simplified the FIRC application & payment process. These features and PayPal’s focus on risk and security makes it a preferred payment option with close to 74% of freelancers in India using it.
With the growing trend of outsourcing which began with startups, today, even large conglomerates are allowing freelancers to be part of their employee network as the millennial or Gen-Y is continually moving towards a flexible work environment.
So what does the Future of Freelancing in India look like?
To answer this and more, Inc42 and PayPal are starting ‘The Rising Freelance Economy’- a webinar series on Inc42. The objective of the webinar series is to engage with the freelance community online, through incisive and thought-provoking interviews with PayPal experts and a discussion with the participants, all in real-time. The webinars will serve as a platform for freelancers to address their questions and understand the payments ecosystem.
The first Webinar: ‘The Freelancer opportunity in India; simplifying FIRC’ is slated for April 17, 2018, at 16:00 Hours. Register here to participate! In the coming days, we will keep you updated on the activities around the webinars, if you have any thoughts on the subject, please write to us at [email protected]