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Why become a freelance account handler in healthcare comms?

A growing number of account handling professionals within healthcare communications are working on a freelance or contract basis. Find out the three main reasons why, and what the benefits are of working on contact.

  • Are you becoming a bit jaded by the politics in your agency?
  • Do you want better control over your work-life balance?
  • Do you want a bit more variety in your career?
  • Do you want to increase your take-home pay?
  • Are you fed up with working long hours and not getting any extra pay?

If you’ve answered yes to all (or most) of the above, you may want to consider working as a freelance (or contract) account manager/director.   Freelancing has been a common working method within the writing side of the industry but there are now an increasing number of professionals within account management that are now working on a freelance or contract basis.

In our 2018 healthcare communications workforce insight report, we had responses from nearly 100 professionals working freelance within the healthcare communications sector.  They were clear about the benefits of working on a contract:

Flexibility – Contracting provides far more flexibility for professionals to work the hours that suit them – rather than their employer.  Contracts can be arranged to have more time off over school holidays or work three or four days per week.

Earnings – Freelance senior account handlers are usually contracted for 3 to 6 month periods for day rates averaging just under £400 per day.  Overtime and extra time are chargeable and most freelancers will set up their own companies and offset reasonable expenses against tax.

Independence – one response to our survey was that benefit of contracting was “escaping the corporate environment”.  Once you’ve worked as a permanent member of staff within an agency for a number of years, the corporate politics and pressures can be wearing, and contracting provides a wonderful feeling of freedom and independence.

Richard Maxwell, Senior Principal Consultant for Paramount Recruitment explained,

“I have a growing richard-maxwell-photonumber of senior account handlers now working on contract at a variety of London based agencies.  All of them are very positive about the flexibility, independence and financial benefits of working as a freelance contractor.  Agencies are also very supportive of the contracting model, as it provides them with a level of expertise that they need to manage and develop their clients, while fulfilling short term needs to cover maternity leave or a short-term vacancy. While most contracts start as a 3 or a 6 month arrangement, I have several that have been extended several times by mutual agreement.”

Any experienced account handlers considering a freelance career should give Richard a call on +44 (0) 7494 326286.  Also, have a look at the live roles available for freelance account handlers and managers.

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