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WebBuzz Podcast

The Pros and Cons to Freelancers

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Freelance is a popular way of working in this current era of the gig economy. It provides a lot of opportunities for small and medium sized businesses to grow. Furthermore, it helps individuals have different streams of income. Everyone wins right? Well, yes and no, as we always say in the Digital Marketing industry “it depends.”

Freelance vs 9 to 5

Hiring freelancers as a business owner can have pros and cons compared to hiring a 9 to 5 employee. From a business owner perspective, there can be skepticism to hire a freelancer. This skepticism can branch off from hiring people who are overseas and there can be a language barrier and cultural differences. Are they going to be able to represent your company in the right manner? Is it going to be easy to give instructions of how to operate the business? Another factor that will influence your skepticism is the knowledge and skill set of the freelancer. You can ask them for a portfolio of their previous work to corroborate their field of expertise. Finally, time zone. You need to take into consideration if you are in different countries or the same country, how can you accommodate work hours so this factor doesn’t hinder collaboration.

Those are the disadvantages of working with freelancers, now, what are the advantages of freelancers? Indeed, there are many. Yes, there might be a time zone difference, but you can ask your Virtual Assistant (VA) or freelancer to adjust to your time zone, some of them are willing to do it. Another positive aspect is that you can grow your business really fast when you have a VA, you don’t have overhead costs of having an office space, computer, internet, and dedicated software for the freelancer’s work.

Business owner’s mistakes with freelancers

Too many business owners make the mistake of not training the VA at all. There is a similar correlation between hiring someone physically and doing some training. VAs and freelancers need to understand how your business operates, so they can do their role.

Roger’s tips through experience

1) Training: Identify what skill sets you are looking for and create a training for that task. That training is going to give you a job description.
2) Reliability: This aspect is more important than having a skill set. Sometimes you cannot get a hold of the VA’s because they are not in your physical office. The task can be done, but not with the specifications needed and that would create a lot of dissatisfaction from the clients.
3) Be slow to hire and quick to fire: If you don’t feel the vibe with that VA, you have to get rid of them because the business relationship won’t work. Move to the next VA.

What are some non-conventional places to hire a freelancer?

Facebook groups, interns, and recommendations.

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