All the outsourcing pros and cons may have left you in so much doubt about hiring freelancers that you just can’t make up your mind. Is it safe to hire freelancers? Can I get the talent I need? Will I be able to maintain control? Am I really going to save?
I have right here 5 of the major outsourcing pros and cons so you can see it all laid out nice and neat. Then you can make your own list and finally settle the question once and for all.
(1) No Office Space
When you outsource most of your business tasks, there’s no need to rent or otherwise provide office space. Freelancers, because they work remotely, maintain their own work locations, whether this be at home, at co-working stations, or anywhere with internet. In connection, you therefore also don’t need to provide internet service, office furniture, or equipment like laptops. This in itself already equates to huge savings and a big load of your shoulders in terms of maintenance.
(2) Specialized Talent
Outsourcing allows you to hire more specialized talent. Freelancers are more focused in the skills that they acquire and develop. The gig economy allows them to become more highly specialized because they can access short-term projects rather than having to develop the more broad ranging skillsets that are usually required for regular office positions.
(3) Greater Access
You can pick from a wider pool than is available in your immediate area. Via the internet, you can access talent from any place in the world that has a connection. This means you have better chances of finding better people than you would if you sourced locally. It’s a simple matter of statistics and probability.
(4) Greater Savings
More than not having to maintain an office, you also save on benefits. Freelancers are not entitled to the healthcare or retirement or other benefits that regular workers are guaranteed. And you don’t have to contract to cover their full 40 hours every week. All you pay for is the hours that they actually worked on your projects. There are no minimums, especially if you hire though a platform like FreeeUp. You hire and pay as needed, without worrying about what they’ll do next.
(5) Leverage Passion
Freelancers are passionate business owners, just like you. They have left the security of the corporate world because they want to do what they love and enjoy the freedom of not being tied down. You can leverage this passion for your business. Freelancers work harder because they don’t have companies backing them up. Freelancers get their work done because no work means no pay, and a bad reputation means no future work. They are independent contractors with confidence in what they can do, meaning that they are more highly skilled than the average in-office worker.
(1) No Face to Face
Hiring a freelancer often means hiring someone you’ve never seen before. You might have the chance to do a video interview, but after that short 15 minutes, that’s basically it apart from their profile photo. It can be a real challenge to develop good rapport and a solid working relationship with someone you are not likely to ever have the chance of simply shaking hands with. If you work, however, at developing your verbal cues to compensate for the lack of body language, you can very well make that connection that you need to foster positive collaboration.
(2) Communication Gaps
Keeping tabs on freelancers is harder than with office-based workers. Even simply communicating with freelancers can be harder because of the distance. They are likely in different time zones, and most will even have different cultures and norms. You need to work at developing a system for tracking progress and getting updates so you aren’t left in the dark. Most freelancers are used to communicating over the internet, so you just have to make sure that they understand how important it is to stay in touch.
(3) Less Control
When you hire freelancers, they are probably going to be working from hundreds and thousands of miles away. This distance means a loss of control over what they are doing and when they are doing it. This can be very bad if you don’t have the right systems and processes in place to provide healthy checks and balances. It’s not like you can just pop over to their desk to see what’s up. They’re probably asleep when you’re at your peak and vice versa.
(4) No Commitments
Freelancers have less of a reason than regular workers to stay on long term. Primarily, there are no benefits, particularly retirement or even social security. There is nothing tying them to want to stay with you other than how much they love working with you. If they grow unhappy with the work – or are unhappy from the start – they are likely only going to stick around for as long as it takes them to find a better offer.
(5) No Challenge
Freelancers like to be challenged because they are entrepreneurs at heart. They are not the type of people who just want to learn one thing and be comfortable doing that for the rest of their lives. Freelancers want to grow and enjoy work life. If you can’t provide them with the challenges they need to thrive, you can lose the best talent to more interesting projects.
It’s Up To You
Out of all the outsourcing pros and cons, which ones stand out the most? Do the benefits outweigh the disadvantages? Do the positives make outsourcing worth trying? Can you realistically compensate for the negatives to turn outsourcing into a highly beneficial solution for your business?
We think so – it’s why we’re here. And we’re here to help. Schedule a call at any time with Nathan or Connor to talk about your hiring concerns. They can help you work them out and put your mind at ease. Remember – they’ve been through it all and they really know what they’re doing.
Julia Valdez is a professional teacher and decades-long lover of the art of words on paper, the stage and the big screen. She spends most of her time doing freelance eCommerce content and project management, adventuring with the Greenhouse Christian Fellowship, volunteering with the Philippine Advocates for Resilient Communities, and sharing lots of laughs over little crazy things.