It is understandable to be apprehensive when it comes to hiring outside help, especially if the outsourcing solution or freelancer works hundreds or more miles away from your office.But get the basics right and it should be plain sailing from the outset.
- Ask relevant questions to make sure the freelancer understands your needs and up to the job in hand.
- Check references. Be leery of any freelancer who can’t supply any positive client feedback (unless they are starting out, of course. But even then err on the side of caution).
- Make sure both you and the freelancer are aware and understand one another’s expectations and responsibilities.
- Check all terms and conditions. Are you happy with them? Is there room for flexibility?
- Start with a small project. This way you won’t be risking too much while you suss out how reliable the freelancer is.
- Check in from time to time to see how things are going. Most good freelancers will do this as a matter of course if the project is likely to extend beyond a few weeks.
- Don’t panic if you don’t hear from the freelancer – he or she may be busy working on your project, and will get back to you on a second ‘nudge’. After all, good communication is vital to long-distance business relationships.
- Reliability can be hard to come by in any situation. If you find a freelancer that you can count on, it makes sound business sense to hire that person again. But don’t leave it to the last minute: many good freelancers are booked up weeks or even months in advance.
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