Freelancers vs. permanent employees

Freelancers vs. permanent employees: Which model suits your company? Discover benefits, risks, and trends in our educational guide!

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The world of work is constantly changing and companies are faced with the choice of what type of employment they want to offer their employees: permanent employment or freelancing? Both models offer specific benefits and challenges that need to be considered. In permanent employment, employees enjoy a high level of security and stability, while freelancers benefit from flexibility and independence. In this guide, we compare the costs, flexibility and risks of both models in detail and carry out a comprehensive analysis. In addition, we look at future trends and developments in the labor market and examine which model suits which company. This work should therefore serve as an orientation for you as to which form of employment is the most suitable for your company. It is a journey through the multi-faceted world of modern working relationships. Let's start this exciting journey of discovery together.

1. Introduction: Freelancers and permanent employees — fundamental differences and characteristics

Flexibility and interdisciplinarity are required in the constantly changing world of work. This also includes various models for employing workers, with two of the most frequently mentioned models being permanent employment and freelancing, also known as freelancing. Both have their own advantages and challenges that need to be considered.

Permanent employees are employees who are employed by a company for an indefinite or fixed-term period. They usually work fixed hours, receive a regular salary and are entitled to various social benefits such as health insurance, pension insurance and paid vacation. Your work is regulated by an employment contract, and the company pays social security contributions and income tax.

Freelancers, on the other hand, are self-employed people who offer their services on a contract basis. They often work on a project-by-project basis and can arrange their working hours and place of work flexibly. Freelancers are responsible for their own social security contributions and taxes. They enjoy greater flexibility and independence, but are also exposed to greater financial risks and must provide their own social security.

In the following chapters, we will take a closer look at the benefits and challenges of both permanent employment and freelancing and compare them in detail. Our goal is to help you understand which model best suits your company's needs and how you can benefit from each of the benefits. Finally, we take a look at future trends and developments in the labor market and look at how they could influence the relationship between freelancers and permanent employees.

2. The benefits and challenges of permanent employment

The tradition of permanent employment is still very present in the working world. Companies offer their employees salaries and often numerous additional benefits on a long-term basis. But while the permanent employment model has some clear advantages, it also includes potential challenges.

Benefits of permanent employment

One of the biggest benefits of permanent employment is security. As a permanent employee, you can count on regular income and are usually entitled to various social benefits, such as health and pension insurance as well as vacation and Christmas benefits. Occupational retirement plans or workplace health promotion offers can also attract.

Another advantage is the opportunity for long-term career development. In a company with fixed employment contracts, employees often have internal development and promotion opportunities available. Close contact with colleagues and supervisors also promotes exchange and teamwork.

Challenges of permanent employment

However, permanent employment also poses challenges. The lack of flexibility in terms of location and time is often considered a disadvantage. Although flexible working models such as home office are becoming increasingly popular and offered by many companies, fixed structures with clearly defined working hours and locations are still the rule in many professions.

In addition, permanent employment can offer less room for entrepreneurial freedom and self-determination than freelancing. Employees are bound by corporate structures and rules that leave little room for individual design.

In addition, permanent employment means a commitment to the employer, both in terms of work performance and time, as well as in loyalty to the company.

In conclusion, permanent employment offers several advantages, but there are also challenges. Each employee must therefore individually consider which working model best suits their personal requirements and living conditions.

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3. The benefits and challenges of freelancing

There has been a major change in the epicenter of the working world in recent years: Away from the traditional paths of permanent employment, more and more people have discovered the benefits of freelancing. The path to self-employment not only opens doors to professional flexibility and freedom, but also poses a variety of challenges.

Benefits of freelancing

One of the main advantages of being a freelancer is extensive flexibility. You are not bound to fixed working hours or a central place of work, which gives you an optimal work-life balance. You're in control of your workload and can focus on projects that match your skills and interests.

The self-determination available as a freelancer gives you the opportunity to set your own path, style, and goals. Your income isn't limited by a fixed salary, so your financial reward is directly proportional to your commitment and abilities.

Challenges of freelancing

However, the freedom and flexibility of being a freelancer also comes with challenges. Searching for jobs can take time and energy, and an unforeseen slump in the order situation can create financial pressure. You'll also need to take care of all aspects of your business yourself, including marketing, contract negotiations, and accounting tasks.

In addition, insurance in the event of illness and in old age is another major challenge. As a self-employed person, you are often left to your own devices and have to build up appropriate reserves or take out private insurance.


Working as a freelancer can be both beneficial and challenging. It gives you the opportunity to design your professional life according to your own wishes. At the same time, however, it also requires a high level of personal responsibility and discipline. In order to be successful as a freelancer, it is therefore essential to consciously prepare for both the benefits and the challenges.

4. Comparative analysis: Costs, flexibility and risks of freelancers compared to permanent employees

While both permanent employment and freelancing offer their own advantages and disadvantages, these vary particularly in the areas of costs, flexibility and risks. A close comparison of these aspects can be crucial for companies to choose the model that best suits their needs and goals.


When comparing costs, it is of great importance to look at the total costs of the employment model. In addition to salary, social security contributions and possibly additional benefits such as company pension provision represent an important expenditure for permanent employees. Freelancers, on the other hand, often charge a higher hourly rate for their work, but there are no social security contributions and additional benefits. For companies, freelancers could be more economical in terms of recruitment costs, as they can be hired more quickly and fired if necessary.


Flexibility is another important factor in comparison. Freelancers are much more flexible in this area, as they work on a project-based basis and can be independent of time and location. This can be an advantage for companies that temporarily need additional manpower or specialized knowledge. Permanent employees, on the other hand, offer planning security because they are bound to regular working hours and contracts that ensure stability.


In terms of risks, a distinction is often made between the risk of an employment relationship and the risk of doing business. Companies bear an employment risk vis-à-vis permanent employees, including the risk of illness or dismissal. On the other hand, business risk is a challenge for freelancers. For example, if a freelancer has several clients, there is a risk that they will not fulfill their obligations due to heavy workload or illness.

Ultimately, the choice between permanent employment and freelancing depends heavily on the individual requirements and goals of the company. A detailed analysis and evaluation of costs, flexibility and risks can help to make the right decision.

Nachhaltigkeit trifft Mitarbeiterzufriedenheit. Entdecke die Regional Hero Card.

Vereine regionales Engagement mit steuerfreien Arbeitgeberzuschüssen und schaffe einzigartige Mitarbeiter-Benefits.

5. Combining the results: Which model suits which company?

Choosing between permanent jobs and freelancer collaborations for your company depends on many factors, including the industry you're in, the type of work that needs to be done, and the flexibility you need.

Permanent positions for stable, recurring tasks

Permanent employees have their place in companies that need a stable, permanent workforce. They often have certain skills that are essential to the company's core business. They are also an advantage when continuous, long-term projects need to be carried out, as they bring a constant presence and a deep understanding of the company and its goals.

Freelancers for innovative and flexible projects

Freelancers, on the other hand, offer you an excellent opportunity to use specialized expertise without making long-term commitments. They're ideal for projects with a clear start and end, such as software development, graphic design, or content creation. They're also ideal if you need to respond quickly to your company's changing needs, as they're often more flexible and can be hired more quickly as permanent employees.

The art of the hybrid model

In some cases, a hybrid model involving a combination of permanent employees and freelancers may be the right choice. The core business can be taken over by permanent employees, while innovative projects or short-term tasks are outsourced to freelance specialists. Through this model, companies can utilize both stable and flexible workers.

The decision is yours

Ultimately, the decision as to whether your company should hire permanent employees or freelancers depends on your specific needs and goals. It is important to be aware of the pros and cons of each option and to weigh them carefully before making a decision. Regardless of which path you choose, always remember that both permanent employees and freelancers can make a significant contribution to the success of your company.

6th conclusion: Future trends and developments in the labor market - freelancers vs. permanent employees

The world of work is constantly changing and trends are already emerging that will determine how we will work in the future. In particular, the question of the form of employment: freelancer or permanent employment, will play an increasingly important role.

Development and forecasting of freelancing

An increasing number of professionals are choosing to work as freelancers. The reasons for this are manifold: flexibility in terms of working hours and location, the opportunity to specialize in specific projects or niches, and the opportunity to operate independently on the market. In addition, advancing digitalization and the ever-increasing trend towards working from home are favoring this development.

Experts predict that this development will continue. An increase in freelancer jobs is expected, particularly in IT professions and creative fields of activity. But more and more freelancers could also be employed in other areas, such as in consulting or in healthcare.

Development and forecast of permanent employment

Permanent employment still offers many advantages: planning security, regular working hours and social benefits such as vacation and sickness benefits. This is often accompanied by a sense of belonging and security. However, some experts see changes on the horizon. Permanent employees could demand more freedom and flexibility in the future, similar to what freelancers already enjoy today.

Younger generations in particular are less striving for a “job for life” and value variety, development and flexibility. Some companies have already recognized this change and are offering new working models that are more oriented towards freelancing in terms of flexibility and personal responsibility.

Freelancers and permanent employees: a future together?

The job market of the future will probably consist of a mix of freelancers and permanent employees. Companies could increasingly rely on a combination of permanent core employees and freelance specialists in order to be able to react flexibly to market requirements.

It remains exciting to see how freelancing and permanent employment will develop. It is certain that both forms of work will play important roles in the labor market of the future and it is up to companies to make optimal use of the advantages of both models. Companies should therefore be open to change and consider new working models in order to remain competitive in the dynamic labour market.

Any more questions?

Everything you want to know — simply explained.

What is a cash benefit card?

A benefit card in kind is a tool with which companies can provide their employees with tax-free benefits in kind. The Regional Hero Card is a special benefit card that aims to promote the local economy. The card works like a prepaid credit card and can be used at all acceptance points that accept Mastercard. Employers can conveniently top up the cards with tax-free benefits in kind, which employees can then use in shops and services in their region. The Regional Hero Card provides a convenient way to provide employees with tax-free benefits while supporting and strengthening the local economy. It promotes employee loyalty to the company and contributes to the attractiveness of the workplace. The card can be used both online and offline and is supported by a user-friendly app that helps employees discover local offers and keep an eye on their available amount.

How do companies and employees benefit from a benefits card?

Companies and employees benefit from a benefit card in kind, such as the Regional Hero Card, in various ways. Companies can pass on tax-free benefits in kind to their employees and thus increase employee motivation and retention. By supporting the local economy, they also improve their corporate image and contribute to the sustainable development of the region. Employees benefit from tax-free benefits that increase their disposable income and have the opportunity to support local businesses and services. The Regional Hero Card helps them discover the diversity of their region and promotes awareness of the importance of the local economy. Overall, the card therefore creates added value for everyone involved.

What tax-free benefits in kind can companies offer with a benefits card?

With a benefit card such as the Regional Hero Card, companies can offer their employees various tax-free benefits in kind. In Germany, for example, benefits in kind of up to 600€ per year and employee are tax-free, in addition, 180€ per year and employee can be granted for personal events such as birthdays or anniversaries. The tax-free benefits in kind include meal vouchers, vouchers for local shops, leisure facilities or cultural events. The Regional Hero Card allows companies to easily and conveniently pass on these tax-free benefits to their employees while supporting the local economy.

How can I order and activate the Regional Hero Card?

To order the Regional Hero Card for your company, please use the contact field on our website to make an appointment with us. In an online meeting, we will discuss the requirements and the desired number of cards for your employees. As soon as the cards have been ordered, your employees will receive the physical card by post or the digital card via email. The Regional Hero Card is activated via the corresponding app. Your employees must download the app on their smartphone and log in with their personal details. They then enter the activation code that they received with the card. After successful activation, the card is ready for use and the credit can be used at participating stores and service providers. The app also provides an overview of the current balance and the option to view transactions.

How does the Regional Hero Card contribute to sustainability and strengthening the local economy?

The Regional Hero Card contributes to the sustainability and strengthening of the local economy by allowing employees to spend their tax-free credit with regional businesses and service providers. In this way, the money flows directly into the local economy, which helps to secure jobs, support local companies and strengthen purchasing power in the region. By specifically promoting the local economy, sustainability is improved as transport routes are shorter and local resources are used. This results in a reduction in the ecological footprint. In addition, the Regional Hero Card promotes awareness of the importance of the local economy and the benefits of shopping with regional suppliers. By combining tax-free benefits for employees and supporting regional companies, the Regional Hero Card helps create a sustainable and economically strong community.

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