By Claire West

Fed up with pay freezes and cuts and desperately need a pay rise to keep up with the cost of living? The answer is to work for yourself according to report findings from leading chartered tax advisors and accountants, SJD Accountancy.

Over 88% of those surveyed in the new report which looks at attitudes of those working as contractors in long or short term positions voted ‘higher rates of pay’ as the most enjoyable factor of being a self employed freelancer.

Contractors, freelancers and interim managers appear to be commanding higher rates of pay with 34% earning between £500 - £700 a day — a 13% increase compared to 2012.

Better to work for yourself

As well as better pay rates, it comes as no surprise to see that freelancers and contractors state flexibility (63%), freedom (54%) and a better work/life balance (53%) as reasons why they prefer to work for themselves than someone else.

However, other advantages to being self-employed included not having to get involved in office politics (61%), being challenged with a variety of different work (47%) and being viewed as an industry expert (35%) within their field.

Contracting post retirement

Only 10% said they would go back to permanent employment if offered, with a mere 13% choosing contracting due to a lack of permanent roles. And interestingly enough more mature professionals - in their 50s and 60s are coming into contracting — increasing from 16% to 20% over the last year, with some opting to start contracting after retirement.

Claire Johnson, Managing Director at SJD Accountancy comments, “Working for yourself as a freelancer or contractor is becoming more and more popular. Many who used freelancing to bridge the gap between permanent positions are now looking at contracting as their career as it is financially, emotionally and professionally more satisfying.”

The survey is based on over 1,000 of SJD Accountancy’s client base of Limited companies and is undertaken every six months into the attitudes and statistics for those working for themselves in freelance positions. As well as finding key trends across the contractor market, the survey highlights that many small businesses need to ensure is they have the right network of professional advisors, such as SJD Accountancy, to help them with their financial, legal and recruitment issues.