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May 4, 2021

7 Common Mistakes To Avoid When Hiring A Freelancer

COLLABORATIVE POST

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

With more workers leaving their daily grind, finding quality freelancers can be difficult.

Having a good hiring process in place will guarantee that you find the best candidates. If you treat them well, they will most likely stay and add a great deal of value to your business.

In this article, we highlight 7 common mistakes to avoid when hiring a freelancer and how to avoid them.

1. Not Having a Solid Freelance Contract In Place

You should have legal documents in place to protect all parties should things turn sour. Define the freelancer terms and conditions from the beginning. This will make for a better working experience.

It should include information like the scope of the project, terms of employment, and payment terms.

These points will help to create a sense of clarity and security for both of you. Be sure to include legal documents to protect your business interests. This includes an NDA, an IP agreement, and a no-compete agreement.

2. Hiring the First Freelancer that Comes Around

If an urgent project surfaces, don’t fall into the trap of hiring the first freelancer that pitches to you. You won’t have enough time to screen the freelancer and this could be harmful to the project. The chances are high that you won’t quite hit the mark with the very first freelancer that comes your way.

Your project might be out of their scope and you could receive poor quality work as a result. That’s a big gamble to take if your freelancer is designing your website or marketing your products. Hiring a great graphic designer can set your website apart from your competition.

Freelancers are assets so it’s worthwhile to treat them as such. Look into building a long-term relationship with them. You know that you’ll have a safe pair of hands to rely on in times of need.

3. Accepting Freelancer Fees at Face Value

When freelancers set their rates, they understand that it will probably be negotiated. There are many reasons why freelances set their rate at a certain point, mainly because they’re trying to make sure that they don’t get taken advantage of.

You must ask potential freelancers if their fee is flexible. A happy medium should be reached before onboarding the freelancer for ultimate success.

Consider whether hiring a freelancer makes sense in the long haul, or if you’d be better off having a remote team. Remote employees sign a contract with you and work full time for your business, saving you time and money, while getting consistent delivery.

4. Not Paying On Time

A surefire way to lose a freelancer is to withhold payment for work that has already been completed. If the work submitted for review is up to standard, you should make a point to pay them on time.

Don’t let poor payment structures impact your ability to work with amazing people.

If something comes up that prevents you from completing payment, communicate with them. As a show of good faith, consider processing partial payment in the meanwhile. This way, they know that you do intend on paying them for their services.

5. Hiring a Freelancer Based on Ratings Alone

Using websites like UpWork and Fiverr to hire a freelancer makes things easier. It is still your responsibility to vet a freelancer before onboarding them. This will guarantee that they are capable of working on the project.

Freelancers don’t usually make use of traditional resumes. They will have some form of a portfolio that will help you make your decision.

Ratings might not always be foolproof, so feel free to reach out to their past clients for a reference. This way, you can get a real understanding of how the person works.

6. Being Ill-Prepared to Onboard the Freelancer

It’s your job to ensure that the project is defined before you onboard a freelancer. Working with a client that doesn’t know the scope of their project is very frustrating.

Freelancers are there to complete a specific set of tasks. You should make sure that their deliverables are set out before they start the project. This will save both of you precious time and money.

7. Misunderstanding Cultural Differences

The beauty of working with freelancers is that you’re able to work with people from all over the world. You need to be sensitive to their cultural practices.

Nothing is set in stone, and this includes deadlines and communication styles. Some freelancers might consider certain tones as rude when you’re just trying to be clear.

Many businesses are hiring freelancers to meet their operational needs. There are also many more freelancers on the market today than ever before.

It’s easy to avoid these common mistakes to find the best freelancers for your business. You’ll gain exceptional value from their expertise and an eagerness to work with you.


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Maya Rotenberg is Vice President of Marketing at Stoke Talent, a software platform that helps companies get rid of the financial, admin, and legal headaches of working with independent contractors, freelancers, gig workers and consultants.

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