Full-Time vs Freelance Engineer: Career Potential
When you are trying to decide between being a full-time or freelance engineer, there are a number of variables that you will need to take into consideration. Here are a few things to think about when it comes to deciding between a full-time position or a freelance career as an engineer.
If you are an engineer, there are more and more opportunities in today's market to get involved in freelance work. You can do practically anything that you would be able to do in a normal job through freelance opportunities. By doing this, you are going to be able to call your own shots. Instead of working for an engineering firm and sticking to a specific schedule, you will be able to choose the clients that you work with and work your own hours. You are not going to have a manager that is overseeing your work. You are going to be in charge of yourself, and you will be able to do what you want. If you get your work done in the morning, you can feel free to take the rest of the day off.
Another advantage of working as a freelance engineer is that you are going to have unlimited income potential. When you work for a firm, there is likely a cap on your earnings. Even if you work your way through the ranks and get promotions, you know that there is only so much money that you can make. You also know that the company is taking a good portion of what you actually earn in order to cover overhead and management salaries. When you work for yourself, you do not have to worry about any of this. You can charge a competitive rate and still make very good money. You can work as much or as little as you want.
You could also choose to pursue a career as a full-time, staff engineer. With this type of job, you are going to be working in a traditional office setting for an engineering firm. You are going to do the work that is assigned to you in this situation. Many engineers prefer this type of arrangement because they never have to worry about having plenty of work to do. You simply show up to work, and you are going to have projects to work on. You do not have to worry about going out and finding new clients or billing clients for the work that you have done. Instead, you can focus solely on engineering duties.
Another benefit of working in an office setting is that you are going to get a nice benefits package. Most staff engineers get access to a retirement plan, health insurance, and a host of other benefits.
Making the Decision
Every engineer is going to value different things when it comes to working as a freelancer or as a full-time employee. You will need to decide whether you value freedom or security before making your decision.