Post-pandemic, there are roughly 1.2 billion freelancers worldwide, making up about one-third of the global workforce. More companies continue to build teams of remote workers because it saves money, boosts productivity, fosters diversity, and provides unparalleled flexibility.
That said, assembling and leading a strong freelance team is not without challenges. You must learn how to hire the best freelancers for your business and keep those workers happy and engaged. Here are a few fundamentals for getting started.
Take Care of Administration
Your first task is to take care of any necessary administrative responsibilities to put your business on a firm footing. Freelancers are eager to work for reliable clients and will want to know what your company is all about before joining the team. You can make a mark in the industry by showing that you run legally- and financially-sound operations.
For instance, if you still haven’t established the appropriate legal structure, now‘s the time to do it. By forming an LLC, you could enjoy more flexibility, less paperwork, pass-through taxation, and limited liability. But, every state has unique rules and regulations, so it’s crucial to understand what your state requires before moving forward. The easiest strategy is to hire a formation service, like Zen Business, to set up your LLC.
Also, you’ll likely deal with your fair share of paperwork when you start hiring freelancers. And since PDFs are among the best formats for business documents, you want to equip your team with top-notch PDF tools.
Use a converter tool to quickly turn PDFs into various Microsoft Word formats. You don’t have to worry about losing any formatting; simply drop the PDF into the converter, activate the tool, and download the file. Search “convert a PDF to Word“ to see your options.
Identify Your Needs
Some businesses work with an entirely remote team, while others have both remote and on-site employees. The key is to determine your organization’s specific needs.
You might not be able to run a brick-and-mortar shop without an in-house staff, but you are probably able to operate an ecommerce store from a distance. Fortunately, there is a simple method for finding out which jobs can be performed remotely. Ask yourself if the job takes place on a computer or other devices, and if it involves communication over the internet or phone. If so, a freelancer can probably handle it.
You can also research the projects and tasks other companies utilize freelancers for. If they’re successful, chances are you can hire remote workers for similar jobs.
Know Where to Look
Once you’ve determined which roles you need to fill with freelancers or with external contracted partners, it’s time to create your remote workforce. Start by asking your professional network for recommended referrals. Then, hit online job boards like Freelancer, Upwork, and Fiverr to connect with potential freelance candidates.
You can also find niche sites that cater to freelancers in content writing, web design, virtual assistance, accounting, and other specialties. Or, you can find culturally-diverse remote workers through platforms that serve a specific country.
Creating a diverse freelance team is a great way to increase the diversity of your network and increase the range of perspectives in your company. But remember: diversity means more than race and gender. Look for diverse freelancers that represent different cultures, ethnicities, religions, age groups, and more.
Communication is significantly different among a distributed team than an in-house staff. Do not allow distance to keep your team from communicating effectively. Make sure you have appropriate procedures and rules in place regarding when your freelancers should report to their superiors and be available for company meetings. In all cases, pay your freelance team members for the time they spend attending meetings.
Also, invest in communication tools to help your team stay connected and collaborate. Project management software can ensure everyone has the information necessary to complete projects while meeting deadlines. Team chat apps can simplify internal communication, while a video conferencing platform will facilitate more productive team meetings.
Prioritize Your Company Culture
Similar to communication, it can be more challenging to maintain a healthy company culture when your workers are distributed across the country or globe. But without a thriving culture, it’s next to impossible to keep your employees engaged and satisfied.
Discuss company values – like diversity, equity, and inclusion – with any freelancer you’re considering hiring to ensure they are aligned with your principles. Hold regular meetings and occasional special events online to give everyone a chance to build relationships and create a sense of belonging. And, consider meeting in a physical location at least once a year.
Building a diverse team of remote freelance workers can save your company time and money while providing access to a wide range of talent. But, you must approach it the right way to forge a strong team that stays productive and happy for the long term. Start with the advice above, and continue learning as much as possible about how to hire and communicate with diverse freelancers.
Ethel Lair understands that it’s easy to live the life of your dreams when you know what you want to leave behind for future generations. She created legacybasedliving.com to help her site visitors create financial plans that allow them to leave a legacy of support and love for their families and communities.