by Ray T. Lewis
Outsourcing is one of those things that you either love or hate. For many of us, outsourcing brings to mind lost jobs and dealing with English-challenged customer service representatives. For others, however, outsourcing brings to mind the ability to save time and money for their small business. Outsourcing can often pull a small business out of a death spiral; so don’t be afraid to exercise your choices when you need a project completed. Outsourcing lets you save money and time due to the fact that you don’t have to take on employees and their benefits and salaries.
Freelancers, Kind of Like Mini-Employees
Freelancing is essentially contracting. You’ve seen the guys in hard hats building office buildings and the like. Those guys are not employed by the business that will be housed within that building. They are contractors, skilled workers hired to do that specific job.
Freelancers work the same way. If you have a website for your business but lack the skill or time to build it properly, the best thing to do is to hire a freelancer(s) to do it for you. In this case specifically it is a very good idea. Can you afford to have a permanent webmaster on your payroll? Most small businesses obviously can’t, so they pay a freelancer on a case-by-case basis whenever they need them. Thankfully, there are a few reliable websites you can visit to find your freelancer.
Elance, Guru, and GetAFreelancer are the best freelancer websites out there. Elance is considered the best due to its skilled, deep talent pool, Guru is #2, and GetAFreelancer comes in at #3 because of its dearth of strong English-speaking freelancers. While strong English skills are not necessary for every project or provider, we are assuming that if you are reading this that this may be a concern for you. Either way, always remember that no matter what you get what you pay for. If a freelancer bids $50 on a project for which you have budgeted $500, chances are the end result will not be very pretty. Such bids are often made by freelancers living in cheap markets that allow them to work for such meager sums. In the end, you could end up paying even more to clean up the resulting mess.
Use freelancers to:
Save money — Freelancers are not like employees because you do not have to concern yourself with covering their insurance costs and salaries in the long term, allowing you to reinvest that money in your business.
Save time — Freelancers only work on what you pay them to do, so you can devote your time to more pressing matters. While your freelancer designs your website or next ad campaign, for example, you can focus on managing your business.
Covering All the Bases
Freelancers run the gamut, from data entry clerks to web designers. Though some freelancers meet the common concept of a home office worker, many are actual firms. Many writing teams and online data entry companies, to site some examples, actually do much of their business via one or more of the aforementioned websites. So don’t assume that your job is too big for a freelancer.
Ray T. Lewis lives just outside of Dallas, Texas with his wife and three children. He reads extensively, and he’s worked as an editor and writer for askdeb.com for a little over two years. His goal is to give you realistic advice when it comes to finding information about data entry jobs. Visitors to askdeb.com can expect to find extensive, detailed answers to reader-submitted questions.