There’s a fair share of lingo batted around in the freelancing world. And that can make it a bit confusing if you’re just starting out. Today, we’re shedding some light on the question of whether you can take on contract work and freelance work at the same time. (Spoiler alert: Yes!)
Similarities Between Contract Work & Freelance Work
There’s a reason these phrases are sometimes used interchangeably. They share a few characteristics. When you take on a role as either a freelancer or contractor, you’ll be agreeing to these basics:
- You will not be employed by the company for whom you’re working. In the U.S. we refer to employment as a W2 position. For freelancers and contractors, though, you’ll get a W9 instead.
- In order to get paid, you’ll send invoices to the company (or the recruiter who got you the work).
- You won’t be a member of the company’s staff. Your mutual relationship can be started and ended at the will of either party.
Differences Between Contract Work & Freelance Work
When you’re doing contract work, you’re typically working at an hourly rate for a set period of time. Sometimes the company will expect you to work from their office.
“I’m contracting with company XYZ from February through May. They’re really happy with my work!”
On the other hand, as a freelancer the length of time you spend working with the client is typically based on how long the project takes to complete. Furthermore, in general freelancers work from their own home with only an occasional meeting in the client’s office.
“I’m doing a freelance project with company ABC. They love what I’m coming up with!”
The Key Takeaways
These terms are kinda similar, but also different. The big thing to keep in mind is to make sure you and your client are 100% on the same page before you begin the work.
- Will you be doing contract work or freelance work for this company?
- What are their expectations for when, where, and how much work you’ll be doing?
- Will they expect to be billed by the hour, or by the project?
As long as both parties are aware of the expectations, the actual lingo used doesn’t matter that much.
A Final Thought About Contract Work and Freelance Work
Now that we have the terms cleared up, we can answer the question in the title of this post. Can you take on both contract and freelance work at the same time? Absolutely! You can relate to some of your clients as a freelancer, and others as a contractor. It’s your career, and the decision is refreshingly yours!
Your turn! Have you worked as a freelancer or a contractor? Which one do you prefer? Let us know in the comments below!