Things To Keep In Mind When Hiring Freelancers
Team Management

Things To Keep In Mind When Hiring Freelancers

By
Derek Abram
|
CEO of Prio
|
5 min read

Hiring freelancers to work on specific tasks or projects is definitely a trend that a lot of businesses seem keen to take advantage of. By doing so, businesses get to build a talent pool of some of the top-tier resources from over the world without having to worry about the costs that come with employing them full-time.

With that being said, freelance hiring is something that needs a different approach than what one would use while hiring an employee. If you’re looking at engaging with freelance contractors for your business needs, here’s a helpful guide on how to hire a freelancer.

What to look for when hiring freelancers

When you’re looking at hiring freelancers, the first place to begin would be websites like Fiverr or Upwork, where freelancers from around the world offer their services. However, here are some factors for you to consider when shortlisting freelance resources.

They have a strong portfolio and referrals

A freelancer’s portfolio is the equivalent of a full-time employee’s resume. Any active freelancer ought to be able to furnish a portfolio with plenty of samples of their work without much ado. If a freelancer does not have a readily available portfolio to share with you, it may be a sign that the resource in question is either inexperienced or disorganized.

Similarly, always make sure that the freelancers you shortlist are able to provide you with valid referrals from clients they have worked with in the recent past. A referral dating back a year or more could be an indicator that the resource has either been dormant for a while or has not had positive engagements with recent clients.

They’re proactive

The right freelancer should be proactive in the manner they interact with you during the interview process and while working with your team. Anyone that does not have questions about the project and the way they are expected to function is not likely to deliver quality results.

They have good reviews

While looking for freelancers on websites like Upwork, Freelancer, or Fiverr, it would be prudent to pay as much attention, if not more, to the ratings and reviews section as you would to the pricing section.

The ratings and reviews freelancers get on these sites are a testimony to the quality of the work they have been putting out. Ideally, look for a resource who has at least 10 reviews, and rates at least 4.5 or more. 

They look to understand more about your company

To begin with, it is always ideal to hire freelancers with relevant industry experience. However, the best freelance resources would go a step further, and be eager to understand what your brand values are and what your company actually does to ensure that those aspects reflect in whatever work they do. 

They’re open to constructive criticism

While freelancers may come with loads of experience and be the best at what they do, it all counts for naught if they cannot understand or accept your perspective as a business owner. This makes it important for you to hire freelancers who are willing to have open discussions and accept constructive criticism, even if it is about something within their area of expertise. 

They are willing to work closely with your team

This is something that is crucial, especially if the freelancer’s role overlaps with what your internal team is working on. Look for a freelancer who is willing to work closely with your team to ensure that there is no disconnect between both parties. 

They have experience with collaboration tools

When freelancers need to work with internal teams, it is necessary for them to know their way around commonly used collaboration tools such as Slack, Google Docs, Zoom, and Google Meet. This makes communication and collaboration easier, especially considering that the freelancers you’re hiring may be located in a different geographical location. 

They adhere to high-quality standards

One of the biggest advantages of working with freelancers is that you do not need to constantly monitor them to get work done. However, a freelancer who takes pride in the quality of their work is an added benefit.

This makes it important that when you’re hiring freelancers, you look for those that have an eye for detail, are eager to ask the right questions, and are willing to go that extra mile to ensure top-notch quality on their projects. 

They pay attention to details

Very often, freelancers tend to simply rush through briefs and often miss out on the fine print. An eye for detail is crucial to ensure the overall quality of the output.  

To see if the freelancer you’re hiring does actually pay attention to details, a good trick is to add a one-liner in the job description, such as, “Title your application, “I read the job description for xx post.” You’d be surprised how many people miss out on these small details.

They provide and stick to timelines

It is not uncommon for freelancers to work on more than one project at a time. This makes it essential that you either communicate project deadlines with them before you hire them, or ask them how long they’d need to work on your project. 

Ideally, you’d want to hire a resource that has a proven track record of delivering projects on time and commit to doing so before they come on board. The last thing you want is a freelancer who has too much on their plate and cannot commit to the timelines your project requires.

Are you hiring for short-term or long-term engagements?

Freelancers move from one client to another as soon as their projects are completed, so if you want a long-term engagement with your freelance resources, it is best to keep them informed in advance. That way, they know when to expect work from you and can plan their schedules to accommodate your requirements as well.

It also helps to stay in touch with freelancers you’ve had a good experience with even during downtimes. Otherwise, if you stay silent after they’re done working on your project, they’re likely to assume that you are no longer interested in working with them in the future. 

Do they have repeat clients?

If the freelancer you’re hiring seems to have previous clients calling them repeatedly to work on their projects, it speaks volumes about the quality of their work and the rapport they have built with their clients. That is a much better review than anything you could look for online. 

Use Prio to create a seamless experience with freelancers

We, at Prio, have tools specifically designed to enhance the experience of working with freelancers. 

Our time tracker can help you ensure that the hourly rate you’re paying the freelancer, the time the freelancer spends working on your project, and the rate you’re charging your customers for the project are all justified.

Our invoice generator can save productive time for your freelancers by automatically creating invoices for them to send you periodically, a perfect solution for long-term freelancer engagements. Learn more about these and other Prio tools by visiting our website today.

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