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As a business owner, it’s important to recognize when you can use a hand. Whether you need a quick worker who can take on some of your repetitive daily tasks, or an expert to take your business to the next level, hiring a freelancer may be the way to go. Outsourcing work to freelancers is a cost-effective way to capitalize on some amazing talent. Sadly, hiring remote workers can be hit or miss. Ensure great results from your new hire by following some of these tips.
Solve the Communication Problem
Before you start hiring freelancers, develop a solid communication system. Lack of communication is a common problem among remote teams that can lead to higher turnover rates, reduced productivity, and fewer innovative strategies. One way to keep your freelancers in the loop is to have all company meetings transcribed and dispersed amongst your team. Transcribing can be a lengthy process, however, which presents its own barriers if done in-house. It may make more sense to utilize an automated text-to-speech transcription service, which is generally both faster and more affordable (generally ~$0.10 cents per minute). By utilizing a service, you can get your team meeting minutes in a matter of minutes.
While one-on-one calls and live meetings have their place, emails and live chat may be better for communicating complex ideas and specifics. Be open to different forms of communication. SitePoint also stresses the importance of developing communication rules. For example, everyone must be on the same page when it comes to availability. Your freelancers may be in different time zones, so you can’t expect them to always be available during your business hours.
Know Where to Look
There are several ways to find remote workers online. Many people have good luck with classified websites and freelance job boards, such as Indeed. Reach out to candidates yourself, or post a job ad and wait for the applications to roll in. You can even find remote workers on social media or professional networking sites like LinkedIn. Business owners also have the option to hire workers through freelancing platforms. While these platforms aren’t free, they make it super easy for business owners to find freelancers based on their skills, rates, reviews, and work experience.
If you don’t have time to sift through freelance applications and screen candidates, consider turning to a temp agency to fill your temporary roles. A great temp agency will match you with qualified candidates who have the skills that you need. According to Wonolo, temp agencies handle everything from screening candidates to skills training, so their workers are ready to go. You won’t have to do any work reviewing employment history, conducting background checks, or interviewing candidates.
Learn How to Write Effective Job Ads
Whether you’re posting job ads or sending invites to freelancers, include plenty of information so you can uncover the best talent. List the skills you’re looking for and describe your project in detail. Medium recommends leaving any cliched terms out of your job ad, such as “rock star” or “ninja.” Simply describe the work you need done in a tone that reflects your company’s culture.
Don’t forget to include some great questions to weed out the really good freelancers. Not only will these questions help you assess the expertise of your candidates, but they’ll reveal how well each person read your job ad. At this point, avoid asking freelancers for anything that will take them a lot of time, like a project estimate or test assignment. You can, however, ask for existing work samples!
Outline Your Project
Make sure you can describe exactly what you need before hiring a freelancer. If you need website content, create a short outline for each web page. If your e-commerce site has a few bugs, detail the exact problems that need fixing. Even better, provide examples of what you’re looking for. The more information you can give your freelancers, the better. Learn how to write a great brief for your freelancers so they’re better equipped to meet and exceed your expectations.
Hiring freelancers can be stressful, especially if you’re used to working with people face-to-face. Just remember that managing a remote team takes some getting used to. Take it slow and consider just hiring one person at a time until you can get the hang of it.