We have recently carried out a detailed survey of the impact of Covid-19 on Freelance PR professionals, with market researchers Intuit Research
The results are very sobering:
- Half have already lost over 60% of their income
- Two thirds of freelancers do not quality for support
- Six in 10 freelancers are the main household earner
- Almost half have limited companies so get no support
- Half are considering leaving freelancing altogether
- Until Covid-19 half were forecasting income growth of over 20% this year
The survey of PR freelancers reveals that most will receive no help from the Covid-19 measures announced by the Chancellor, despite the immediate and huge impact on their incomes.
The impact of Covid-19 on freelancer incomes is already dramatic - 31% of respondents have already seen over 80% of income vanish and a further 18% have seen income fall by between 60 and 80%.
Almost 60% of respondents are the main breadwinner in their household.
“The Chancellor’s measures fall very short of addressing what is happening to incomes today and will continue to affect thousands of PR professionals for months” says founder of The PR Cavalry Nigel Sarbutts.
Not only has income collapsed, the support package excludes two thirds of freelancers, mainly because around half have incorporated, often at the request of public sector clients or on the advice of accountants.
Around one third of those excluded miss out because they have not yet filed a tax return.
Ironically until Covid-19, most freelancers were forecasting a good year with 61% having predicted growth, in some cases of over 20% of income.
“The speed of impact is bewildering and the hope has to be that the recovery will not be as slow as it was after the credit crunch” says Stephen Yap of Intuit Research
The research on the impact of Covid-19 on PR Freelancers has been shared with the CIPR to inform the industry’s response, not only to Corvid-19 itself but also lobby the Chancellor to re-think his support for the freelancer sector.
Dominic Ridley-Moy, CIPR MCIPR, Dip CIPR, CIPR Independent Practitioners Network commented:
“I want to thank The PR Cavalry and Intuit Research for their efforts. Their research provides a worrying snapshot of hard-working professionals fearing for their livelihoods and without the financial support the Chancellor committed to in his budget when he promised he would do “whatever it takes”. Too many are falling between the gaps in the package of support that has been announced. We wrote to the Chancellor last week with these concerns and we will continue to lobby on behalf of our freelance community with this research.”
Survey of PR professionals following Chancellor’s announcement
Welcome to our survey of PR professionals following the Chancellor's announcement of income support for the self-employed.