While there certainly are free-lancers who've got a good range of skills and are able to take a global view, there are also loads who talk the talk but are full of BS. Equally there are some employees who've got the experience and know how to take a global view.
I haven't seen much evidence to suggest that employment status makes a big difference in that.
On the other hand I have seen many occurrences of free-lancers coming in and repeating what the internal staff have been saying for years, only to be believed just because their free-lance.
I've been on both sides of that one!