More S’poreans Are Turning to Freelancing as a Career Option, Here’s Why

Singapore is getting more and more expensive to live in as the years goes by… especially when us mere mortals need to eke out a living. 

You leave school with a huge ass student loan to pay and you can’t settle down with your university sweetheart and start a family because of all the financial responsibilities.

If you need a second income because Money Not Enough, here’s one other alternative for you: become a freelancer.

Here are 8 good reasons why NOW is a good time to be a freelancer.

1. It’s a backup plan

There are a couple of sayings in life you need to know: ‘Hope for the best and plan for the worst’ and ‘Fail to plan and you plan to fail’.

Not only do you get to earn extra cash, you’ll also have a backup plan if you (Choy! Touch wood!) lose your job suddenly. At least you still have a source of income, right?

2. You have an additional skill

Most people are usually generalists or specialists. You are either trained to have a generic set of skills which may not be applicable to a niche market or you might have a specialised skill which is greatly valued but it’s not something you naturally enjoy doing.

Guess what? Making up your mind to be a freelancer forces you to develop a new skill and improve upon it because you’re looking to sell it to the highest bidder. And if you lose your full-time job? Refer to #1.

3. The Rise of the Freelancer Economy

According to Olivier Legrand, Managing Director and VP of LinkedIn (Asia Pac & Japan) said at the recent NTUC’s U Future Leaders Summit, that this is the era of the freelancer economy.

According to surveys and statistics provided by LinkedIn, 30% of all active workers are freelancers and 85% of total companies surveyed said they will increase the hiring of freelancers which means lesser jobs for employees.

4. NTUC is focusing on freelancers right now

Here’s the top tip of today: go where the wind blows. As more people are freelancing, the Labour Movement is focusing their efforts on the freelance community in Singapore. This means more benefits, more assistance and more resources.

Assistant Secretary General Ang Hin Kee has been calling for greater support for freelancers and advocating for freelance work to be “a viable and sustainable career option”.

Freelancers can join NTUC’s Freelancers and Self-Employed Unit (FSE) for a myriad of “pay-per-use” services and networking events. Freelancers would also be able to leverage on NTUC’s various networks like U Creative for business solutions.

Check out the article we’ve written about the rights of freelancers in Singapore which includes maternity leave!

5. It’s cheaper to cultivate a skill now

Like we said, go where the wind blows. Singapore is now focused on upskilling its workers because of the changing landscape and rate of disruption.


Other than SkillsFuture, did you know you can sign up for free courses at Udemy, Udacity and Coursera?

6. You are not constrained to jobs in Singapore

With the economy not looking too positive in Singapore and many jobs being displaced, it’s good to have options open.

Platforms like UpWork and Elance connect local freelancers to global companies or individuals that need business services. 

7. You will be more competitive and resourceful than your peers

Image: Kittisak Jirasittichai /

Freelancers might be known for a skill like photography, writing or designing but really, they are a business unto themselves.

They need to cultivate a good sense of business, monitor their industry and develop strategies to keep up with the competition.

That’s entrepreneurial spirit right there and this means they must apply themselves across a myriad of functions, develop creative thinking and be resourceful.

8. It could take off and be your full-time job

If your freelance career really takes off, you might be lucky enough to make it your full-time job. To do what you like and make money from it, what else could be better, right?

Read Also:

9 Freelancers Rights You Confirm-Plus-Chop Didn’t Know 
10 Valid Reasons Why A Freelancer’s Job Isn’t As Easy As You Think 
10 Habits of Highly Productive Workers That They Didn’t Tell You

Featured Image: Kittisak Jirasittichai /

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Boon Hun

Boon Hun

Armed with paper and pen, or rather keyboard and the internet, he wants to change the world one word at a time. I guess you could call him a keyboard warrior, except he doesn't troll, honest!
Boon Hun