If your business is growing at a rapid rate, then you might reach a point where you face a skills shortage. At that point, you may have to move to a bigger office. However, what if your present location works perfectly for your business and you don’t want to increase your overheads with a larger office?
One solution to this dilemma of rapid growth is to hire freelancers to fill in the missing skill gaps. This is not only a good strategic move because you won’t have to move to a new location, and also a good fiscal move because you won’t have to pay as much as if you hired more full-time staff. When it comes to hiring freelancers, you are also hiring remote workers—and because of this fact, location doesn’t matter. Freelancers could be living in the same city or in any city across the world. All their work can be delivered digitally across the Internet.
You can use collaboration software to manage your freelance workers and send money through a financial service that handles money transfers and manages foreign exchange rates.
Advantages of Hiring Freelancers
There are numerous advantages to hiring freelancers, and here are 3 big advantages:
- · It’s easy to scale your business. As your workload increases, you can hire more freelancers.
- · It’s a flexible arrangement. If you have a seasonal business, where demand drops to a low ebb during slow months of the year and then rises to a frenetic pace during, say, the holiday season toward the end of the year, then you can decrease or increase the number of freelancers.
- · It’s cost effective. You can hire highly-educated and skilled individuals without paying them a large salary and benefits. Instead, you would pay on a project basis.
How to Hire Freelancers
You may be concerned that the quality of the work may not be as good since these remote workers are unsupervised. How can you ensure that you hire the best people for high quality, timely, accurate work?
Here are two ways to make sure you hire the right freelancers:
- Use a reliable hiring process:
Research the freelancers available to do the work. For instance, there are many job sites that connect employers with freelancers. You might also be able to ask others in your industry for recommendations.
Choose a fee rate that you feel is fair. While you might be tempted to choose people who charge the least amount, they might not be able to deliver the quality of work you need to impress your clients. For the best freelancers, expect to pay top dollar.
Ask for any testimonials from past clients. This will not only tell you if the freelancer is as good as they claim, but you will also get a good idea about the quality of their work and their work ethic. Also, ask for any samples of previous work.
Interview the freelancer via Skype to get a feel for their personality and communication skills.
Finally, set up a trial for a few projects or for a short amount of time to see if both of you are able to work well together.
- Build a good relationship with your freelancers.
Assuming you have hired the right people, then the quality of their work will really depend on how well you treat your new team.
Here are some tips on how to create a great relationship with your freelance staff:
- Give them clear instructions and offer immediate feedback if they don’t give you what they want. Avoid criticizing them; instead, stay positive. If you treat them well, they will understand your process better after a few attempts.
- Make sure you explain all your computer security policies.
- Treat them as if they were part of the team, not outsiders. This could range from onboarding them as if they were regular employees, to inviting them to company meetings and outings. In other words, create an atmosphere of inclusion.
- Understand that you are not their only client, so make allowances when you’re scheduling work. Don’t hamper them with strict deadlines that they might not always be able to meet.
Respect their Independence
The reason highly-skilled professionals sometimes become freelancers is not because they can’t get a job, but because they prefer the independent lifestyle. This is something you must respect when working with them.