The concept and practice of freelance work is growing in popularity for both companies that employ and the freelancers these companies seek. Freelance work is attractive to employees because it often allows them to work remotely, set their own hours, and still receive compensation. For companies, it is often cheaper and more convenient to hire a freelance worker. However, with the growing demand for freelance workers increasing, there is a question that has been vexing companies and their HR departments: How do you find, recruit, and manage the top freelancers?
Check Portfolio Sites
The tool most instrumental in making your decision about which freelancer to hire will more-than-likely be their portfolio. By checking portfolio sites like Elance and oDesk or even Carbonmade and Behance for creative types, you maximize your exposure to potential freelance candidates. LinkedIn is another useful tool for recruiting freelancers, as several have examples of their work on SlideShare, LinkedIn’s site for portfolios. By familiarizing yourself with the portfolios of different freelancers, you’ll be able to best gauge which candidate will be best for the job in question.
Once you’ve identified which candidate will best suit your company’s needs, you’ll need to decide what payment will be. When offering payment to a freelancer, it is helpful to evaluate their skill level and professional experience, which you should be able to discern from their portfolio site. Don’t automatically choose someone who you know will be the cheapest because their skill level might not match with your companies needs. Compensation should reflect how much time you believe a freelancer would put into your project, and this figure should be realistic and mutually agreed upon.
The key to managing a freelancer effectively is communication. By choosing to implement a schedule for communication that includes regular meetings (either on-site or off-site), status reports on the freelancer’s progress, and timely feedback on projects and deliverables can make all the difference in building a successful relationship with your chosen freelancer. Make sure you propose deadlines that are realistic, and always encourage your freelancer to contact you if needed.
Finding the right freelancer for your company’s project is always essential, and now it’s easier than you might have previously thought. By checking portfolio sites and social networking sites, offering realistic compensation that shows your freelancer that you value their work, and facilitating open professional communication, you should find yourself with a great reputation that freelancers will respond eagerly to.
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