The freelance is here to stay. In the near future, it is expected that the number of independent workers will surpass traditional employees. Whether this happens or not, it is important to know the best way to make use of independent professionals.
Yes, I help run an independent market and that gives me a certain perspective, but more importantly, over the years I have hired hundreds of independent professionals and perfected my skills for the success of hiring independent professionals.
1. You have what you pay for. We all want the big bargain and we hope to find the diamond in the rough. It is true that workers who live in an economy different from ours can often work for less than someone locally. But, there is a limit to this bargain. In general, the less someone applies for their job, the less likely it is that they will be able to work completely without supervision. One suggestion when hiring staff at the lower end of the salary scale is hiring agency workers. Agencies usually maintain a higher level of quality control over the work they administer.
2. Keep your eyes on the ball. Giving someone or a group of people a task and expecting you to get exactly what is swimming in your brain with very little guidance or supervision is less likely to happen than you imagine. Even if you do not have the technical ability to know how to perform your task, you have a pretty clear idea of what the final product should look like. This is true for almost every type of task. Make sure the reports look correct, the 3D representation looks like the real offer, the data entry has all the correct data in all the right places, the programs work correctly or the sales quotas are met. It only takes a few moments of your time. If you do it correctly, you can drastically reduce your workload and still end up with what you expected.
My first experience in hiring independent professionals was to hire an agency to create a promotional application for me. It was a lottery application. When everything was “ready”, they showed me the truly wonderful administrative interface and all the great features. Then I asked the obvious question, “How does someone enter the draw?” The answer, “You never told us you needed that.” Point made.
3. Keep your expectations real. It is easy to get caught in the trap of hiring people online and never feel that they are human. They may look more like a computer program, and we expect computer programs to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Set realistic expectations for your workers, treat them with respect and dignity and they will love to work with you and continue. Keep hiring people who do a good job and will improve even more. Bouncing from freelancer to freelancer can have unpredictable results.
4. Have patience. Many times I have been quick to pull the trigger and I am ready to move on to someone who could be faster in capturing. Over time I have calmed my finger on the trigger and taken more time to make sure I am communicating my wishes well. I have to remember that some of the people they hire do not speak English as a first language. Who knows what Google Translate tells them to do! Write your goal and the steps to achieve it in simple, short and understandable terms. The creation of a complex design document may seem detailed enough to you, but it can be completely overwhelming and alien to the person who has to follow the design, plan or instructions.
5. Be awesome When someone works hard for you, pay, reward them and be a great employer. Most freelancers work long hours and work very hard to make you happy. Let them know you appreciate them and treat them fairly, and they will continue to provide excellent service.
Freelance often and intelligent freelance. We are all learning to create a completely new way of working.