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Freelance vs full-time developer

Do you remember the time freelancing was something that only photographers and musicians did? Not anymore. With remote work becoming the norm, everyone and their mother call themselves freelancers.

But is it a solution for you?

Freelance vs full-time developer: Free(dom)lance or not? 🦅

A freelance developer is an independently (read: self) employed programmer who works with one or more different clients on various projects. Freelancers choose which projects to work on, as well as choosing the number of hours they work and their payment rates. Freelancers usually work on one-off projects, which can sometimes turn into long-term relationships.

On the other hand, a full-time developer works for an employer to create, maintain or test products, analyse user needs, write code, etc. Typically, it is a well-defined and structured role. Considering that technology advances daily and impacts every part of our lives, developers may work in any industry, including engineering, financial services, education, media or gaming, telecommunications, healthcare and many others.

Even though there are many similarities between a freelancer and a full-time developer, there are also some notable differences. For example:

Duties and responsibilities

Freelancers and full-time developers will probably work on various projects simultaneously, but being a freelancer often requires additional skills, such as attracting new clients using marketing knowledge, negotiating with them, and even completing administrative and financial work. You must issue invoices and convince people to pay them in time. The struggle is real.

Work environment

Freelancers can choose any location from which they want to work, usually from their homes or coworking spaces. These shared spaces and offices are becoming quite popular nowadays, allowing users to work from anywhere in the world, experience new cultures and meet new people. Full-time developers typically work in offices, and even as more and more companies today offer remote or hybrid options for their employees, they still don't have the same freedom as a freelancer.

Lifestyle or life-quality

As mentioned before, freelancers primarily practice remote work. In addition to that, they can also choose their schedule or even parts of the year when they want to work and when they want to rest. Having all this freedom is great, but it can sometimes be hard to work alone, constantly motivate yourself or lack the security of a full-time employee. And there is no water-cooler chat, like it or not. So if you are a social animal, you could sometimes feel isolated.


Most people think freelancers make more money, which can be true sometimes, but getting to that point is hard and takes time. This can take a lot of nerves and induce stress, and when freelancers get there, they need to put money aside for retirement, healthcare or something else equally important. On the other hand, full-time employees receive a guaranteed paycheck, benefits, time off, maternal or paternal leaves, etc. On the upside, as a freelancer, you can milk the total value of your work, especially if you have serious sales skills.

Which one is better?

It depends. There is no correct answer to this question, but it does depend on the type of person, their needs, strengths and capabilities. So if you want more freedom, better structured time with your family/friends, or maybe you want to try working in another country, freelancing could be an exciting option. However, if you appreciate stability and certainty (whatever that means these days) or don't want to spend time on administration, sales and what-not. Then a full-time job will probably suit you better.

If you are interested in freelancing but you are a full-time developer, there is a possibility to start part-time freelancing. Alternatively, if you're a freelance developer who wants to find a full-time job, try looking for companies that offer part-time work so that you can continue working on your freelance projects. In some cases, freelancing leads to interesting jobs as it gives you insight into the company.

Not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur, and that is okay. Maybe having a stable career with a 9 to 5 job, with a side gig now and then, could be perfect for you.

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Git Concepts I Wish I Knew Years Ago

The most used technology by developers is not Javascript.

It's not Python or HTML.

It hardly even gets mentioned in interviews or listed as a pre-requisite for jobs.

I'm talking about Git and version control of course.

One does not simply learn git