From self-employment to an employment relationship: 9 tips for a successful return


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Start your own business Manager Being in your own startup is considered chic and trendy. It is often forgotten that starting a business is fraught with uncertainty - and sometimes returning as an employee is the better way.

From self-employment to an employment relationship: 9 tips for a successful return

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Marco Ebeling is an online editor with a focus on careers and HR topics.

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From boss to employee: 9 tips for a successful return as an employee

There are numerous guides and tips on how to become self-employed as an employee. The reverse case is probably even more common, especially in times of crisis, but the topic is neglected in the media. Often the end of the business is seen more as failure and personal failure. Numerous hurdles can arise here, because the end of personal freedom can, above all, harbor psychological problems.

Admittedly, it all sounds so beautiful in theory: You are your own boss and enjoy a lot of freedom. However, when it comes to self-employment, not all that glitters is gold. Bureaucracy, poor order books, an unbalanced work-life balance or simply too many ambitions can quickly turn self-employment into hell. Then the step back into an employment relationship is obvious. However, this is often not that easy and you have to overcome a few hurdles first. At this point we have summarized everything you have to consider and how this step works for you.

1. Don't see it as failure

First you should switch from self-employment to salaried employment definitely not to be seen as a kind of regression. Rather, consider your time in freedom as a pool of experience that you can now bring to your new job.

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With this attitude and point of view, you can also impress HR staff who will sit across from you at the next interview. It is by no means a failure if you are better off with this decision. Rather, it only makes your life better.

2. Concentration on the essential tasks

Look forward to the tasks ahead. While you also had to take care of about a third of administrative tasks in your self-employment, such as the Buchhaltung, you have a lot more space in the employment relationship to concentrate on your actual tasks.

In addition, you will have more free time that you may not have had before. Even if the monthly salary may be a little lower than before.

3. Clarify the insurance situation

One of the most important points to keep in mind when stepping into employment is insurance. On the one hand, you can cancel your entire company insurance. This takes a huge financial burden off. At the same time, you should try to call your health insurance company.

There are a few things you should be aware of, especially if you have previously been privately insured due to your independence. You may have to switch back to the statutory health insurance fund, which is not that easy. You have to namely meet certain requirements. It is important to clarify this for you in advance, not that you will suffer financial disadvantages from changing jobs.

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4. References instead of job reference

For your Casting When you take on your next permanent position, it is of course clear that you cannot issue your own job reference. However, you should still include certain references in your application that can inform the HR staff about your workforce.

So ask your previous business partners, customers and clients whether they can write you letters of recommendation. You can also include work samples from successful assignments with your application to give an impression of your work.

5. Realistic salary demands

It is of course clear that you may earn less as an employee than you previously did as a self-employed person. If you have had a fairly high income up to now, however, you have to take into account that you have probably worked more and a large part has been spent on running costs and taxes. That no longer applies. In return, you will most likely have more free time, regular work processes with a lower salary that is still appropriate.

6. Take advantage of self-employment

During your time as self-employed, you were able to gain a multitude of experiences that employees will not. This is not necessarily just about technical competencies, but also about social skills, entrepreneurial thinking and organizational talent. Plus you will yourself built a network that can also be of use to you in your new job.

Especially if you have been very successful in self-employment, then you will also be in great demand with HR professionals on the normal job market. Make use of these skills in your application and personal interview.

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7. Openness and honest handling of the professional past

As already mentioned at the beginning, a change from self-employment to an employment relationship is not a shame and should by no means be viewed as a failure by you. So do not try to avoid or bypass the topic in your application.

Instead, be open and honest about your professional past. In this way you create trust and that more positively on HR than an exaggerated self-portrayal.

8. Take role changes seriously

It may be a bit strange for you, especially at the beginning, but as an employee you will have to say goodbye to being your own boss. You will again take on a role in a fixed hierarchy. Finding your new place can be difficult, especially after many years of independent activity.

Let the recruiter know that you can handle these structures. You automatically assume that you might have problems with such hierarchies, even if they are flat.

9. Combine self-employment with employees?

If you do not want to give up self-employment completely, at least in some industries there is the possibility of combining both, for example in freelance work. So you have the security of having a reasonably secure and regular income and at the same time you can be your own boss.

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