6 tips on how to manage periods of low work volume as a Freelancer.

6 tips on how to manage periods of low work volume as a Freelancer.

Many businesses, no matter how successful it might be, experience slow seasonal periods of low work volume and input. This slow season is usually characterized by a reduced number of business activities usually resulting from the low market demand for the business good or services. The same thing happens in the world of freelancing. There are days you will have low work volume.

What you do with this period will sometimes go a long way in deciding what the future holds for you and that is why we have taken time to write this article. This slow season might variably last for just a short period of time or might mark the beginning of the eventual demise of your career or business. So you must be careful and pay attention to this article.

According to recent surveys, during these slow seasonal periods and low work volume, workplace productivity usually experience a decline of up to 20%, resulting in undergone projects requiring an additional time of up to 15% of the initially proposed timeframe to complete. Many factors can attribute to this rather, unusual development, whether it might be the recent completion of a project or the overall off-season in your industrial sector affecting all underlying businesses in such sector.

This slow season which usually lasts for just short periods, is viewed by many businesses as a valuable opportunity to complete unfinished tasks that have been ignored due to lack of working time, maintaining your work volume at a substantial level. It also provides workers with enough time to work on their professional skills, with improvement of their overall skill development. This will be another productive way to optimize slow periods in the working space.

Though it is almost certain that there will be always be days that there will be less clients and fewer service requests from customers, the major challenge for business owners and freelancers is to be able to effectively manage its business, time, earnings and gigs during these slow seasons.

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In this article we would be discussing the various tips you can take to effectively manage periods of low work volume as a freelancer or as a business owner. The strategies include complex processes such as strategic planning, maintaining a proactive approach to business requirements and personal development. Listed below are the simplified strategies that you can employ.

How to manage periods of low work volume as a Freelancer – 6 Tips

1. Cleaning up and organizing your workspace

Low volume of work on slow workdays usually guarantees that there is enough time to clean and organize your workspace, for both physical and digital working environments. A clear and well organized working environment will help to improve your focus and overall work productivity. To reorganize your workspace you can start by deleting old redundant files, changing software updates and archiving important file documents. It might even be as simple as tidying up and rearranging your work desk that will boost your work motivation.

When rearranging your work desk, be intentional about the position of certain items, like for instance, the placement of awards, laurels and certificates right in front of your desk, where you can directly view it might be necessary incentive to feel motivated to work and if you are the type that gets easily distracted, you might place it elsewhere in the office.

Additionally, with a less hectic work schedule, you are provided with more time to organize your emails. The importance of email marketing in any organization is highly regarded hence during periods of low work volume, the mailbox should be properly organized. You should archive or delete unimportant messages to save space while crafting new responses to customer reviews in the inbox. This will improve the efficiency of the email system of the business.

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2. Review workflows and set goals

Since in the high seasons there are more clients patronizing the business, with much work to be done, there is usually little time for filing necessary paper works and performing the necessary audit of sales. The slow season provides enough time to carry out necessary tasks such as checking invoices and conducting surveys that can provide insightful information about the previous high season.

This is necessary as thorough analysis of business processes will serve to measure and optimize the profitability and effectiveness of business activities. This will surely have an impact in improving the workflow of businesses.

After reviewing necessary business activities, it is important to also review the organizational goals and make necessary changes when required. It is essential when evaluating goals to consider the criteria of productivity and performance you want that business to attain. To this end you should outline actionable steps that should be taken to actualize these goals like the integration of AI software and digital tools to facilitate certain work processes, or the attending of business seminars to boost sales.

3. Professional training and development

Making judicious use of the downtime of your business to retrain and upskill is highly beneficial to your professional development. You should leverage the slow work periods to improve your skillset, with much attention given to the improvement of technical expertise and interpersonal skills.

To do this, freelancers should take online courses, obtain necessary certifications and attend necessary seminars and webinars. They should also conduct research for materials related to their area of expertise in the industrial sector on digital libraries. This will help you to better comprehend other roles within different organizations, making you more versatile and adaptive to the evolving work landscape.

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4. Updating your resume.

Resume is a document that shows the portfolio of a particular worker, which is a basic tool that most businesses use to evaluate their workers.
After the retraining and upskilling process, you would have obtained new skills and certifications. It is essential that these are included in your resume, highlighting that you have gained new professional experience and skills. This factor is highly beneficial as it might lead to bigger projects, gigs, work promotions, bonuses and other work incentives.

If you have updated your resume after a long period, you might need to review your skills and trainings, ensuring they meet up with the latest requirements. You can also consider modifying the template or style so that the resume can adequately reflect your current experiences and skills.

5. Budget creation

It would be very easy to track expenses on future expenditure by creating budgets. It is to this end that budgets are reviewed and adjusted to accommodate for financial stability, particularly during periods of low work volume. During slow work seasons, there is need for one to critically examine and adjust one’s budget to minimize expenses and save more money. One should implement cost efficient measures into the budget that will offer the best value without compromising product quality.

In summary, this extra time (the slow work periods) will offer you the avenue to conduct adequate research on the expenditure specifics – where and how the organization intends to spend its money

6. Take necessary breaks

A saying goes thus, “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy”. Hence, it is important that as a freelancer, you utilize this slow seasonal periods to take breaks. This will allow you to recharge, relax and engage in desired recreational activity.

Taking breaks also helps to improve your mental health as it will prevent the risks of being fatigued or experiencing burnouts. You can focus on improving your mental and physical health by exercising your body through stress-relief techniques and appropriate meditation.

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How to transition from 9-5 jobs to freelancing.

Israel Otoijamun

Israel Otoijamun is the founder and CEO of GigHQ.xyz. With years of experience in the digital space, I have earned a lot from freelancing, both on Upwork and fiver, thanks to my digital skills. My goal for creating this platform is to help digitally skilled people earn a living through their skills online, irrespective of their location and background. Please feel free to reach out to me if you have enquiries. E-mail: israel@gighq.xyz. ✌️

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