As a small business owner, whether new or experienced, daily you’re faced with the challenges of reducing overhead and staying relevant in a world that accounts for more than 50% of the US working population. Most of your attention is divided between cutting cost and improving time management. And while hiring employees or a fancy agency sounds ideal, employees come with unwarranted expenses and regulations, while large firms arrive with a towering price tag. Have you ever considered hiring within the freelance sector?
According to software giant Intuit, 40% of the United States workforce will be either part-time workers or full-time freelancers by 2020; that’s more than 60 million people. Below are a few areas that make hiring freelance workers over large firms the better choice.
Cost Efficiency (with the same quality of work)
I believe it’s safe to say we all love to receive the greatest level of services at reasonable prices. That’s the benefit of hiring freelance workers - as the old saying goes ‘you get more bang for your buck.’ Firms and agencies incur a substantial level of overhead costs compared to freelancers. Not only does the agency have to cover the salary of your project’s account manager, they also have to keep the lights on. Fewer overhead expenses allow freelancers to offer competitive rates for a variety of services with the same quality of work. Freelancers also possess the ability to provide flexibility in terms of services to precisely meet your needs.
Freelance workers operate on an extremely flexible schedule and are available during non-traditional hours compared to your 9 to 5 - Monday through Friday agencies. The ability to work around the clock leverages the company’s ability to frequently establish new goals and accomplish them at quicker rates. According to the online employment service, Elance, 83% of their employer clients agree that hiring freelance has sped up turnaround times for their project.
Peace of Mind
When a company seeks assistance for a particular project, two qualities they’re in search of are stability and assurance. The company wants to hire someone that will see the project through (from start to finish). Hiring a freelance worker provides peace of mind because it cuts out the middleman. Within an agency, the account manager of your project can change at any given moment due to various employment matters. This issue alone can cause anxiety and mental stress especially if you’re approaching a deadline. With freelancing, there’s only one person attached to the contract, so the negotiation phase is free range. Also, the possibility of having your account rep replaced is completely in your control.
Desire to Prove and Impress
This is the last benefit, but probably the most significant of the four. Do you realize freelancers need your account just as much as you need their services, if not more? With ‘uncertainty of income’ being a freelancers greatest concern, acquiring an account comes with an immense desire to prove and impress. Freelancers aren’t sure when their next opportunity will arise so for the length of the partnership, their focus is to provide not only the service(s) you’ve requested, but also go above and beyond in hopes to renew or extend the contract. On average, a freelancer takes on one to three projects at a time. However, in some cases, it could be months before acquiring a new opportunity. The thought of losing your account is fear provoking and keeps them feeling the need to continually deliver the highest quality of communication, creativity and service.
Do you agree with the four benefits mentioned above or do you prefer large firms? Contribute to the conversation now by placing your thoughts in the comments section below.