Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Freelance vs Employed

Since March 2014 we've been looking for instructors to join our team here at The Pilates Pod. After all this time we were really excited to have finally found what we thought was our permanent team. And it so nearly was, until one of the two instructors who had signed the contract had a change of heart.  What made this particularly disappointing is that this is now the 6th time that this has happened.
Of course, it's an individual's decision to change their mind if they wish and like it or not, we accept that it's just part of business. But after so many disappointments, it's hard not to let paranoia set in. So I thought I would write this blog to try and explain why taking an employed position against Freelance work is a good idea. Just in case you were thinking about applying for the position.
But first, here's the bad news. The pay is not as high as a freelance position.
We currently pay between £18 and £25 per hour for freelance instructors, depending on skills and experience. If you're a freelance instructor based in London or the surrounds, you might expect this to be a bit higher still. It's a good rate in anyone's books. As an employed position the rate is quite a bit lower than a freelance rate, but there are good reasons why taking an employed position over freelance hours is the right choice. And here's why:
You get guaranteed pay every month.
With a freelance position, if your 1:1 doesn't show, or cancels at the last minute or the class you were due to be teaching has no-one on it, then you don't get paid. On the other hand, as an employee, it's our responsibility to look after the marketing, venue rent, and make sure the classes and 1:1 slots are filled by employing an administrator etc. We take that risk, and you, the employee, gets paid regardless of whether there is nobody on the class, or whether it's full.
You get paid even when you aren't working part of the year.
All of our team are entitled to holiday pay. So if you want to take time off, you still get paid.
You get on the job training.
It's in our best interests to make sure that all of our instructors receive continual training, be it in-house or elsewhere. We are proud of our reputation as an excellent Pilates studio. We have worked hard for our awards, and we're committed to retaining this reputation, so all of our instructors share knowledge and best-practice with one another. It's an inspiring, creative environment that means we're able to offer challenging, varied and rewarding sessions for client and instructor alike.
You get to work with a great team.
Freelancing can be a lonely business. We're a good bunch. We laugh, we go out together when we can and we've even had a night away together at a spa resort.
You don't have to worry about your tax, or paying an accountant
If you're operating within the law, as a freelancer you will be submitting tax returns, and probably using an accountant to help do this. As an employee, you are PAYE, which means you have none of those headaches (or expenses) to worry about as it's all taken care of.
Of course, there are benefits to being a freelancer, and being employed doesn't suit everyone. But if you are looking for a few hours teaching on a Saturday from 8:45pm - 2:15pm in beautiful Hitchin, at one of the UK's most recognisable and up-and-coming Pilates brands, you could do a lot worse than applying for this role.
So go on, what have you got to lose?
Ed Smith, Director - The Pilates Pod.