How to Hire a Freelancer: 10 Tips on Finding a Freelancer
January 4, 2016
January 4, 2016
The shared economy has created a buzz all around. With the market flooded with professionals, who are willing to let go off their stable jobs to grab a share of the freelance pie, it is time for freelancers to take charge. When it comes to finding a freelancer, you are looking for one in a million – someone who takes charge of things, makes quality submissions, and is reliable enough to be picked for both short-term and long-term assignments.
10 Tips on Finding a Freelancer
As more and more professionals are showing willingness to take their skills off the road and choosing to work from home, here are some tips to find a perfect solution to your freelancing needs:
Posting your job
When you are looking for the right fit for your vacant job position, you want to make sure that you do all things right at your end. Posting a job is one of the most crucial elements of finding a qualified candidate. Be as specific as possible about the vacancy requirements. Making things clear at your end before you sign up a freelancer is critical to a satisfactory client-contractor relationship and also to the future of your project.
Your work doesn’t end at posting the job. Find time to invite the most befitting candidates to submit their proposals.
Identify skill requirements
Are you looking for an industry expert? Do you seek solid English skills? Do you want someone with a marketing background? Are you willing to work with fresh talent or need an experienced hand to do the job for you? When you are clear with your skill requirements and know what exactly to get your hands on, you can easily wade through mediocrity in the freelance field so that you find only true talent.
Networking & hiring channels
There are a number of traditional hiring platforms that can lead you to some of the best candidates out there. When you are in search for real talent, it may help to spend some time in traditional job platforms. Social networks are a valuable resource when you seek talent. You might be lucky enough to locate a hidden gem. These networking platforms are a hub of professionals, and many are always looking for the right opportunity. When that opportunity knocks at their doors, they are willing to jump instantly! Who knows they might just be waiting for you!
On-demand platforms, such as Peer Hustle, are a hub of freelancers and independent professionals. These mobile talent marketplaces make it easy to find and connect with freelancers. By using such a resource, you can easily tap into a global pool of freelance talent and find the right fit. An increasing number of professionals use these platforms to share their unique skills and talent to make money. One advantage of using these freelance networks is that you get to find reliable & real talent. Using these platforms is as easy as searching for a specific skill set, short-listing a few candidates with relevant skills, getting in touch with them in real time, and agreeing on a price and job terms and ultimately hiring them for the job.
Previous connections or referrals
There are friends, relatives, and co-workers that you can trust. Drop an email to your connections, spreading the word about your requirement. If they have recently used a freelancer and found their services worthy enough of referring to others, they wouldn’t waste a second before recommending them to you. By asking connections about your specific requirement, you are saving valuable time. We all are aware that time saved is money! The more insights and information you can get from connections, the more quickly your business can grow.
Cheap isn’t the best always
When you are trying to find a freelancer, you want the best talent for your job. Try to avoid going the “cheap” route. Though you may feel tempted into hiring the freelancer willing to work for a meager price, it may not be the best decision. Remember, you get what you pay for! You may not get the right fit for your job at a lowly budget. Cost is a big motivation for workers, including freelancers. Offer them the best price and they would be willing to go an extra mile to provide you with the best value for your money. So it won’t hurt to be little flexible with your budget.
Match skills with requirements
You cannot compromise on the quality of work submitted by the freelancer. So in order to get the best quality submissions, you ought to look for the best talent. When it comes to finding a freelancer, make sure you check their portfolio, work experience, and samples of work done. You want to ensure that they have experience doing the same kind of work and have proven expertise in the industry. Who would want to waste time on a person that is new to the industry and can hardly move a foot without your guidance? Experience matters and it does count when it comes to choosing the right fit. The right person will be interested in spending some time to understand your business vision and goals.
Work samples are a kind of proof that they have handled similar tasks in the past. It gives you an idea about their style of work and commitment to their craft. Do not hesitate to ask for a small paid trial assignment if you aren’t sure about the candidate’s range of skills. It will help you determine whether they’re a good fit for your work.
Flexible payment options
Freelancers want flexible payment ways so that they can get paid without much hassle, whether you choose to pay by cash or check or wire transfer. While traditional banking involves too many intermediaries, freelancers may not be happy to work for a client that is not open to other payment options. After all, they are working for money and want to ensure that they do not end up paying extra to intermediaries. Make sure you work with platforms with flexible payment options.
It is natural for clients to be skeptical when freelancers ask for upfront payments. However, it is a common practice in the freelancing world and contractors want to ensure that they will get paid for their time & efforts. To be on the safer side, you could create short project milestones for bigger projects so that you don’t have to pay in lump sum upfront.
Determine workstation needs
Are you looking for a location-specific freelancer? Do you need the freelancer to report to your office regularly? Employing someone remotely gives you a greater choice, with a deeper pool of applicants.
If you expect an independent contractor to work onsite, it is your responsibility to provide them with necessary hardware and software. For offsite contractors, you may need to ensure that they get remote access to specialized software and network drives so that they can seamlessly carry on with your work.
Efficient & organized communication
When looking for a freelancer, you want to make sure you get a professional who communicates efficiently. You do not want someone who takes days to respond to your queries. Working with such professionals can be really frustrating. Simultaneously, it is important that you communicate your requirements and messages clearly. You must be responsive to their questions so that they are clear with what you want and can produce the desired quality of work.
Your email communications must be organized. Sending different emails with bits of information scattered all over will result in confusion and frustration for the freelancer. No person wants to work with a client who is unclear of their expectations and not organized.
Create documents to organize invoices, assignments, projects, and pricing models. Be clear about deadlines and work schedule. Staying organized will save both of you time and keep the freelancer motivated to make timely submissions. Make sure you understand that your freelancer works for other clients and may be under contract. Do not forget to ask how much time they can devote to your assignments.
It’s equally important for both sides to respect each other – while they respect your project goals and deadlines, you should respect their efforts and contribution.
Bottom Line on Hiring a Freelancer
Remember, great freelancers are like cherished commodities in the freelancer industry. So you want to get your hands on them. It is up to you to determine how you can convince them to work for you. What extra are you offering to make them work for you?
Last but not least, make sure you draw up a legal agreement with your expectations about important items, including confidentiality, deadlines, deliverables, reimbursement, termination, and compensation.
Finding the right talent requires time and effort. While you are looking for the best freelancer, they are also looking to work with a client that can promise a lasting relationship and respect their efforts. When you find one, treasure them like your most cherished asset so that you can keep them. Pay them on time and respect their prior commitments and you can enjoy a fruitful relationship with them.