Concept of work from home and home family education. Mom and son are sitting at the desk. Business woman works on the Internet in a laptop, a child writes in a notebook.

More of the U.S. workforce turned to freelance opportunities in 2022. According to Upwork’s 2022 Freelance Forward survey, almost 4 in 10 (39%) workers performed freelance work in the past year. This percentage is up 3% from 2021 and has reached an all-time high since tracking began in 2014. 

During the past year, freelancers contributed $1.35 trillion in annual earnings to the U.S. economy, which is $50 billion more than in 2021. Rising from 68% in 2021, almost three-quarters (73%) of freelancers say that perceptions of freelancing as a career are becoming more positive.

The top motivators for freelancing include:

  1. To earn extra money (83%)
  2. To have scheduling flexibility (73%)
  3. To have financial control (72%)

Caregivers, in particular, see freelancing as an attractive option. More than half (52%) of caregivers surveyed are freelancers. Among these respondents, the majority (80%) say freelancing gives them the flexibility to be more available as a caregiver for their family.

Additionally, most (57%) freelancers are satisfied with the amount of money they make for the work they do. This compares to only 42% of non-freelancers.