Welcome to the first ever Australian Freelance Awards!

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Freelancing in Australia is tough.

We do what we do without many of the safety nets afforded freelancers in other countries. We’re often self-starters that bootstrap our way into the industry. We do so for the mix of challenge and opportunity, for the opportunity to balance family, life and what it means to be living.

Generous and ready to help our fellow freelancer, we’re also a community orientated bunch. Many of us have swapped work politics and toxic work environments and are leading by example through giving, supporting and mentoring our fellow freelancer.


Isn’t it about time we gave ourselves a heartfelt pat on the back for a job well done?

Unlike other awards, these joint Freelance Australia and Freelance Jungle awards are congratulating freelancers on their values and highlighting the great work you do for client and community alike.

We’re shining a light on the freelancers that help making the freelance journey easier.

Days until nominations open

The categories for freelance awards nomination include:

Best newcomer

While you’ve only been on the freelance scene for 24 months or less, you’re already making waves. Your client work is strong, your marketing presence is positive, and you’ve seemingly taken to this whole freelance gig like a duck to water. You want to show that you are strong, independent and up to the task ­– and so do we!

*To qualify for this entry, you need to have proof you are in the first 2 years of business (e.g. ABN registration, business registration etc) and a developing portfolio and presence.

Agency love child

Agencies around Australia put out the bat signal and you come running to help. Always reliable, you’ve made working with agencies an art form. Working regularly with a variety of different agencies on projects small and large, you’ve proven yourself a reliable go-to asset for all kinds of agencies. If they need the extra hand, you’re the one they call.

*To qualify for this award, you must have an agency nominate you via personal reference and/or 3 proven agency projects in the past 12 months

Regional Excellence

Regional freelancing is the next wave of employment for many of the remote, regional, coastal and rural parts of Australia. In recognition of the commitment of regional freelancers to the growing movement of sea and tree changers, we have the Regional Excellence award. This award recognises the contribution of a regional freelancer that is not letting geography get in the way of good business.

*To qualify for the award, you must be living outside a capital city for 12 months or more and sharing the word of the regional freelance movement via your marketing, projects or presentation.

Self-care award

In a world where long nights, ridiculous deadlines and myths about bravery abound, we need positive role models. Role models that understand stress has a productivity cost, work-life balance doesn’t have to be a myth and can champion a new era of self-care in self-employment. We’re seeking someone that is mixing business with pleasure and making a success of it.

*To qualify for this award, your presentation and ideals will need to be in evidence in your marketing and self-promotion. We will also be looking for an absence of “go hard or go home” mythology.

Best Collective

Not all freelancers go it alone. We’re looking for the army of freelancers that come together on a regular basis to perform projects. You can be a loose collective of 2 or more individuals regularly working together or a specialist until that has come together to do some amazing projects.

*To qualify for this award, you need a demonstrated Australian team for two or more projects.

Best and fairest

Playing nice does get a reward – well, it does in freelance life. That’s why we’re looking for the person that places ethics above ego and fairness above fandom. If you’re the sort of freelancer that believe that treating clients and your fellow freelancers with respect, kindness and honesty is how you win the freelance race, this is the award for you.

*Nomination for this award will be by peers only (no self-nomination).

The Sage Award

Every industry needs their wise men and women and freelancing is no exception. We’re looking for the Yoda of freelancing. That person has to have a demonstrated background of 5 years or more continuous freelancing, high knowledge level within their field, and the patience and willingness to share and impart that knowledge for the good of their fellow business person.

*To qualify for this award, you need a working demonstration of 5 or more years in business and proven track record in mentoring style roles (e.g. running groups, teaching, coaching, board membership to business organisations etc)

Top Practitioner

What defines a top practitioner in freelancing? You have an unmistakably great portfolio that others admire. You have the perfect marriage between personal style and work that clients absolutely love. And you work hard to maintain and hone your craft. The top practitioner can be from any field and will be judged on the basis of outstanding client results and a powerful body of work.

*Judgement of this award will be based on portfolio and client testimonial

Main Stage award

Here you are – out on that spotlight, marketing yourself into high visibility, putting freelancing on the map and unashamedly beating the drum for freelance lifestyle. Your efforts make you inescapable. You are known throughout freelance and business circles alike. And you are not afraid to self-promote and proliferate a freelance empire.

*To qualify for this award, you must be a visible freelance icon in the Australian scene with a proven track record of participation in events and projects.

Social Justice Award | The Yvonne A Lee Memorial Prize

In 2016, Australian business and the freelance scene lost one of our own, Yvonne A Lee. Yvonne was defined by compassion, creativity and an eye for social justice. As co-founder of Wildwon, she championed projects that involved community, social justice and worked to help grow the Australian B Corporation scene. Her loss was felt keenly throughout the agency, freelance and conscious capital scene. We’re honouring Yvonne’s contribution with a prize for freelancers that choose to embody the same compassion, creativity and conscious approach to business.

*If you choose to work with B corps, NFPs on pro bono projects and/or make social justice and conscious capitalism as part of your business, you are eligible to enter.

We’re by Australian freelancers for Australian freelancers because we believe as a community, we know our challenges and needs better than anyone else. 

Our aim is not to sell you a new way of doing freelancing. It’s to help you find how to put your best foot forward.


Mailing Address:
The Freelance Jungle
PO Box 68
NSW 2528