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NUMBER OF ‘INDEPENDENT WORKERS’ JUMPS 34% IN 2021: MBO PARTNERS REPORT


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FROM SIA, reporting on MBO Partners' report.

(For the SIA article published on Aug 31, click here.)

The number of independent workers in America rose by 34% in 2021 to 51.1 million with this year’s economic recovery and better management of the pandemic fueling the surge, according to a preview MBO Partners’ 11th annual “State of Independence in America.” This year’s increase comes after the number of independent workers fell by 7% last year.

MBO Partners defines independent workers as consultants, freelancers, contractors, solopreneurs, microbusiness owners, temporary and on-call workers.

The number of full-time independent workers grew by 25% while the number of part-time independent workers rose 39%. In addition, the number of independent workers who work occasionally (regularly, but without set hours per week) rose by 51%.

In addition, 73% of those who started working as part-time independents in the last year did so to supplement their income, according to the report. And 40% of those who became independent workers in the prior year said they use an online platform to find new customers, up from 27% in 2020.

The report is based on a July survey of 6,240 residents of the US ages 18 and up. Of those, 928 were independent workers.

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