In this digital age, it is important for a business to stay profitable and productive by exploring different unconventional strategies. One is being open to hiring freelancers.
I know many Fortune 500 companies have to hire freelancers or contractors to fill in a certain line of work. Freelancers can help to save thousands of money since they do not need to occupy an office space, they do not need to use the company’s assets and the company does not need to commit to their hours – you only billed for hours or work that is done for you.
While there are pros and cons hiring a freelancer, if you do hire one, the below are ways you can effectively manage your pool of freelancers so they will produce great work for you.
As a boss, you need to trust your employees. This is even more evident when you hire freelancers because you don’t get to see them ‘working’ for you. If you micromanage, you can’t have freelancers working for you. This arrangement can only work if you have an abundance of trust in your workers. Trust that when they clock in the hours are the hours they are working. Trust that when they said they will meet the deadlines, they will submit when the date arrived.
If you want to avoid being played out, trust me I’ve been there before, try to have your freelancers submit their work to you much earlier than your required deadlines. That way you’ll still have enough time to check their work and give back to them for a revision.
Set Up A Schedule
Instead of allowing freelancers to clock in on their own, you can retain a little control by having them to work at a certain length of hours during the day. This can only work if you and your freelancing team are in similar time zones. Having a schedule work hour has many benefits and one good thing is that you can reach them during these periods and expect that the response pretty quick. The downside is that you’ll be limiting yourself only to freelancers around your region, that might mean limiting yourself to a wide range of talents as well.
Have At Least A Meeting Once A Week
Even just to touch base with one another. Whether it is to update the freelancers of the project progress or to brainstorm ideas, certain software like Slack provides a friendly and conducive platform for a good team meeting. It is also good to find out more about your freelancers’ life especially if they have been working with you for more than a few months to draw the bond closer.
Try To Work On Their Timezone On Some Days Of The Week
Even when your freelancers are scattered around the world, try to adjust your time to match theirs on some days of the week. I have worked for clients that I never am able to have a two way conversation with because we live in very different time zones, however, sometimes I manage to catch them when I worked late at night and when they worked early in the mornings. It’s great when you asked a question and you don’t have to wait 12 hours for an answer.
Be Clear On Directions And Expectations
Nothing irks more to a freelancer is when a client keeps changing their minds on what they want. If you don’t want to be disappointed, be as detailed and as meticulous about your expectations. Constantly aligned with the freelancer on what you are looking for, give positive feedback and be open-minded with their suggestions as well.
And of course, if you do change your mind (you have the right to), please extend the deadline as well.
Give Them Some Leeway
Freelancers, like hired staff, do make mistakes as well. Nobody’s perfect so cut them some slack if they make minor mistakes. A lot of the freelancers are fresh graduates who are just about getting their feet wet in the business world, your guidance will go a long way in building up their profiles.
Granted that you are not here to teach but you cannot expect a freshman to be an expert in engineering or web designs. If you need that kind of expertise, you are better off hiring top talents that come with top dollars.
Be Brutal On The Cuts
After the above tips, if a freelancer really can’t meet your expectations, be ready to cut them off your team. There are bad freelancers, just like there are bad employees in the world. They turned up late for your assignments, ignore crystal clear instructions or even gone missing. If it impacted your business, just hire another person. It takes trial and errors to hire the right freelancers.
Have you tried hiring freelancers or work with freelancers? Come and share your experience with us in the comments below.
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