In this paper we present our study of the role of freelancers in the modern labour market, especially during times of economic downturns. Using an autoethnographic research approach, it presents the personal journey of Fathullah working as a consultant in the oil and gas industry in Malaysia. The study focuses on the impact of the 2014 oil price crash and his subsequent plight in taking his career forward during times of uncertainty. Based on the autoethnographic account, it explores various aspects of life as a freelancer such as the issues of job security and job satisfaction. Fathullah found that he enjoyed a different form of job security compared to the time when he was in regular employment, for he has direct market access and wider reach to organizations that require his skills. It follows that he also experienced better job satisfaction as a freelancer. This paper provides insights to aspiring job seekers, businesses in need of human capital and policy-makers aiming to modernize the labour market.
Freelance, Autoethnography, Employment, Oil and Gas Industry, Economic Uncertainties
We wish to acknowledge that the research is funded by a grant from the University of Malaya (Project No GPF011I-2018) and thank the reviewers and editors of The Qualitative Report for their constructive comments which have helped us to improve the paper.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.
Recommended APA Citation
Khalid, F. A., Chan, W. M., & Abdul Jalil, A. (2019). An Autoethnographic Report on Freelance Employment in the Malaysian Oil and Gas Industry During Uncertain Economic Conditions. The Qualitative Report, 24(10), 2592-2607. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2019.3949