Checklist for going freelance

If you are starting to think that being a freelancer may be the right choice for you and your family, it may be time to really consider the practicalities and considerations it entails.

There’s lots of think about – from how you find clients and how much you charge, to whether you should set up as a Ltd company or sole trader, and if a Facebook page is right for your freelance business. To help you think about all the considerations and practicalities of going freelance and make the rights decision for you, we’ve complied a useful checklist of questions.

Going freelance

  • Why do you want to be a freelancer?
  • What’s your vision for your career as a freelancer?
  • How realistic is your plan?
  • What’s your USP as a freelancer?
  • What skills and experience do you have to offer?
  • How will you keep them up to date?

Researching your idea

  • How much research have you conducted into your market?
  • Is there anyone you can talk to for advice or insights?
  • How much competition is already out there?
  • How can you be better, different or cheaper than the competition?
  • Is there anyone who can help you set up as a freelancer?
  • Do you need to register with any professional body?
  • Do you need any specialist qualifications or certificates?

Thinking about money

  • How much money do you need to set up as a freelancer?
  • Do you already have the equipment you need?
  • Will you need to invest in marketing materials?
  • Will you need any professional help to do your work?
  • Do you have the funds you need to set up as a freelancer?
  • If not, where can you find them?
  • Is there enough need for your products or services?
  • Can you charge enough for your products or services?
  • How will you support yourself while you’re establishing your freelance business?

Identifying your market

  • Who will your clients be?
  • What type of businesses or people are they?
  • What are their budgets?
  • What are their needs?
  • How do they currently meet those needs?
  • How will you meet those needs?
  • Where do they look for freelancers?
  • What makes you better than other businesses (price, speed, quality of work)?

Finding freelance work

  • How do you plan to find clients?
  • Are there any resources you can use, for example online jobs boards?
  • Where can you network to find work?
  • Do you have any existing contacts that can help you?
  • How much are you planning to charge for your services?
  • Who are your competitors?
  • How do they find work?

Marketing yourself as a freelancer

  • Have you chosen a name for your freelance business?
  • Do you need a logo?
  • Do you need a website?
  • Can Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn help you?
  • What promotional methods will be best for you?

Practical considerations

  • How will you set up your business (Ltd company or sole trader)?
  • How will you pay tax?
  • Do you need an accountant?
  • Do you need professional insurance?
  • Are there any regulations you need to follow?
  • Where will you work?
  • When will you work?