Best 'gig economy' side jobs for 2017

Published Mar. 15, 2017

In the past, holding a permanent, full-time job was the main way to earn a living. But times are changing. If you're craving increased career flexibility, you're in luck; the "gig economy" is on the rise.

CareerCast has released a new report detailing the top freelance, part-time and contractual jobs for 2017. Whether you're in the market for a side job or a full-time freelance career, there are plenty of ways you can work on your own terms.

"In this digital age, the workforce is increasingly mobile and work can be done from anywhere, resulting in a rise in short-term job opportunities," said Kyle Kensing, CareerCast online editor. "Opportunities to work on a contract or freelance basis and make a great career of it are growing across a variety of occupations and sectors."

Learn more about 2017's best jobs that make the best side hustle.


If you're good with numbers, taking on a side job or even going full-time freelance as an accountant will definitely help you pay the bills. The median hourly wage is $32.30 and the field is expected to see 11 percent growth through 2024.

Of course, you can't just decide to be an accountant. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most employers will require you to have at least a bachelor's degree. Obtaining additional certifications — such as becoming a certified public accountant — will make you a more competitive candidate.

Broadcast and sound engineering technician

Radio programs, television broadcasts, concerts, sound recordings and movies need broadcast and sound engineering technicians to make sure everything sounds and looks great. Put your skills to work setting up, operating and maintaining electrical equipment to earn a median hourly rate of $20.09.

If you're not already in the field, you'll likely need to pursue an associate's degree or at least enroll in a training program where you can learn the basics. Job growth is expected to rise by 7 percent through 2024.

Working evenings, weekends and holidays is par for the course with broadcast and sound engineering technician jobs. This makes the gig a great side hustle, as it might not interfere with a daytime job.


Many people aren't great at making repairs and additions to their property, so your carpentry skills can make for an excellent side job. Expect to earn a median hourly rate of $20.24, doing everything from hanging drywall to installing doors.

The only formal education you'll need to become a carpenter is a high school diploma, as training is done on-the-job. Demand for carpenters is expected to increase by 6 percent through 2024, partially due to an expected rise in new home construction and the need to repair and replace roadway infrastructure, according to the BLS.

Delivery truck driver

Working as a delivery truck driver is a side hustle that will put a median hourly rate of $13.34 in your pocket. Some employers will require you to have a high school diploma or equivalent, but all will expect a driver's license in your state of employment and a clean driving record.

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Demand for this job is expected to increase by 5 percent through 2024 due to a continued need for package delivery services. It's worth noting the growth rate falls below the 7 percent hike expected for all occupations, as innovative GPS technology is expected to help drivers work faster.


Bilingual abilities can earn you a median hourly rate of $21.24 as an interpreter or translator. This field is expected to surge 29 percent through 2024 — more than four times the rate predicted for all occupations — so take advantage of being in demand.

To land a side job as an interpreter or translator, you'll likely need at least a bachelor's degree. However, fluency in English and at least one other language is a top priority for employers, so you might be able to get hired without formal training. is a leading portal for personal finance news and features, offering visitors the latest information on everything from interest rates to strategies on saving money, managing a budget and getting out of debt.