Most jobs in TV are now freelance. The word itself can be confusing. It can mean anything from being temporarily on a company pay-roll to being self-employed or having your own limited company. Ultimately a freelancer is a temporary worker on a short-term contract.
Working freelance means that you can control your own career. You may have opportunities to change roles, develop new skills and decide when and how you want to work. But this flexibility often comes at the expense of traditional job security.
"There will be times when you will ask for work and you won't get it." – David Thomas
As a freelancer you have to be organised. You need to plan ahead so there is another job to go to when the current contract ends. This requires playing the long game, networking and building up contacts as you go along. Then, when you are offered a job, you need to artfully negotiate pay rates and holidays.
If you are a freelancer who is self-employed, you will also have to keep your paperwork under control, manage cash flow and file a tax return at the end of each year.
On top of all that, it is essential to plan your social calendar so you have a life outside of work.
With Simon Smith to unravel the secrets to a successful freelancing career are Barney Newman, a freelance TV producer and David Thomas, a media business owner offering training in communication, broadcast and business skills. We also welcome back to the CoP Show Jude Winstanley, freelance production manager and creator of online jobs site The Unit List.