Types of Self-Employment


man working with machineryThe rapid growth of self-employment has been a pronounced feature of the UK labour market in recent years. According to the latest reports from the Office for National Statistics, the number of self-employed increased from 3.3 million people (12.0% of the labour force) in 2001 to 4.8 million (15.1% of the labour force) in 2017.

If you have thought about working for yourself, you will need to decide how you will work and how you will source opportunities whilst effectively managing your brand.

Once you have decided self-employment is for you, you will need to consider the way you wish to work and the type of work you are looking for.

Types of Self Employment

Interim management – An interim Manager is an individual who works within an organisation for a period of time. They are not a permanent employee of the organisation, they are either registered as self-employed or paid through the company’s payroll for a fixed period. An Interim Manager may be required to assist an organisation through a period of change or transformation, or provide a highly specialised skill set which a business may not have internally for a period of time.

Consultancy - A Consultant is an individual who provides professional or expert advice in a particular field to either an organisation or individual.  This advice may be ad-hoc and not required for a fixed period of time. Consultants are self-employed can be more cost effective to appoint than making a permanent hire.

Portfolio Careers - A portfolio career is working multiple part time jobs simultaneously. This may include a combination of an interim contract, consultancy or freelance support. This would include working for different employers that when combined may be the equivalent of a full-time position.

Preparing for Self-Employment

Once you have decided how you will work, you will need to conduct market research to identify your target market and the most effective way in which to sell your services. You will need to think about:

  • Who will be your potential customers?
  • Where are these customers based?
  • What services do they need and when?
  • Where do they advertise their requirements?
  • What is your USP and how will you market this to your potential customers?
  • What competition will you face, what do your competitors offer and how much do they charge?
Brand Management

It is important to remain consistent in your image and how you present yourself to your existing and potential clients. Before you start to develop your brand it can be useful to consider your Unique Selling Point (USP)

  • What makes you different from everyone else?
  • How will your customers find your services and why should they buy from you?
  • How visible are you LinkedIn?

It’s this message you need to convey when promoting your services, whether this be through your LinkedIn profile, your CV or through your website. For employers looking to source freelancers or interim managers, a website or LinkedIn is often the first place they go.


Networking with new and existing contacts is essential if you are working for yourself.  You can use your network to get advice, provide you with referrals or possibly to secure leads or work.

  • How could you utilise your current network?
  • Have you developed an elevator pitch?
  • How can you look to expand your network?

Renovo is one of the UK’s leading providers of outplacement and career transition support. We work with both organisations and individuals to support all their career transition requirements. If you would like to understand how Renovo can help you, please call 0800 612 2011 or email info@renovo.co.uk

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