In today’s digital era, everything feels very fast and practical. It is not surprising that many then decide to become freelancers instead of permanent employees or civil servants (PNS). The reason is simple, people who choose to be freelancers want more freedom.
As freelancers, freelancers can complete their work without having to set 9 to 5 working hours. However, being a freelancer also has the potential to not get any protection from the company or the government. Therefore, freelancers need to form an association for this job option to be more promising for anyone.
Why are Freelancers Popular Now?
Before understanding why freelancers need to associate, first understand why this job is so popular with many people. One of the important reasons this is a favorite job is freelancers don’t present a work culture that upholds a hierarchy between employees and bosses.
The reason is freelancers are independent workers who handle projects on request and are always adjusted to their abilities. If there is no request from the client, the freelancer will not work. Being a freelancer also means you can refuse client requests when you have other, more important activities.
According to a survey, freelancers are such a popular job because of the flexibility of the hours and the place of work. In addition, another reason is that freelancers tend to be able to channel their talents and interests into work, for example, by becoming designers, writers, architects, and so on.
The Phenomenon of Exploitation of Freelancers
Of the many reasons freelancers are called favorite jobs, and there are many phenomena of exploitation of these freelancers. A few cases say freelancers often get cheated or paid too little. In addition, they also need to get social security and a clear career path.
Many freelancers are unpaid with the lure of improving their portfolio. Even though he was given a salary, his wages were only around Rp. 2.45 million per month. With minimal pay, they do not get social security in the form of BPJS (Social Security Administering Body) because they are considered PBPU (Non-Wage Recipient Workers).
What is a Labor Union?
To overcome the exploitation problem that occurs among freelancers, these freelancers need to form a union. The aim, among others, is to show freelancers’ existence so that they can increase collective actions to improve their fate and rights considered inadequate.
One of the freelance unions that should be followed is the Freelancers Union, which has been around since 1995 and has more than 50 million members. The members consist of United States freelancers. By association, they have succeeded in setting a payment rule for freelancers, which is a maximum of 30 days after the project is completed.
This differs from Bectu in the UK, a union of freelancers and workers in the media and entertainment industry. With the existence of Bectu, these workers have legal advocacy and a standard tariff list for various jobs that freelancers commonly occupy. So, they, too, can use this rate list as a standard benchmark when negotiating with clients.
The Importance of Unionized Freelancers
The fate of freelancers in Indonesia still needs to be fought for. This is because there is no standard of pay for freelancers, allowing them to set the lowest possible price at the beginning to get the project. This is undoubtedly good news for employers.
However, this uncertainty causes welfare guarantees for freelancers to be very low. Armed with a minimal salary, no social security, and a tendency to have overtime working hours, freelancers are not rewarded according to their abilities and energy. Therefore, freelancers in Indonesia need to form associations to set boundaries regarding their work system.
Talking about these issues that cause freelancers to need to join forces, working as a freelancer is certainly fun, especially for millennials and Gen Z.
At Skha, a supportive, safe and comfortable work environment is essential for talent to develop themselves. We fulfill this need by opening up opportunities for those interested in the world of consultants.