Two thirds of European employees are thinking of becoming self-employed

We weren’t surprised to read that new research from Human Capital Management solutions firm ADP has found that 68% of Europeans are considering setting up their own businesses. In the UK alone, that figure is 63%, making it clear that traditional employment is no longer the ‘norm’ for a wide range of people.

Looking at the reasons why

The study covered almost 10,000 European workers and asked them for thoughts on the future of their careers. In addition to the headline stats relating to becoming self-employed, respondents also answered questions about the reasons for this decision – with 28% citing work/life balance as a key reason for considering a self-employed lifestyle.

This was reinforced by the survey answers from those who are already running their own businesses, with 81% of those stating that they felt their work/life balance was good. Likewise, 75% confirmed that they had high levels of job satisfaction, and 39% loved being able to work when and where they chose.

Flexibility is the key

Almost half of those involved in the survey (47%) stated that higher rates of pay were a huge motivator for considering a self-employed lifestyle – with the ability to choose their own hours and hence their own take home pay also being a key consideration. Flexibility was also a factor in relation to working location – particularly for more mature workers.

Commenting on the survey results, ADP UK Managing Director Jeff Phipps added a word of caution for those considering taking the plunge. “While the gig economy brings with it many benefits for both employers and workers, such as a varied and accessible talent pool and increased control over working hours, it can also be a challenging experience. People considering a gig economy job should think carefully before embarking on a freelance basis, ensuring they have carefully weighed up the positives and negatives associated with this working style.”

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SJD Accountancy are the UK's largest specialist provider of fixed fee, Limited company accountancy services to contractors; we've been acting for contractors across the UK since 1992 and have more than 15,000 clients.

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