Sometimes, 24 hours in a day doesn’t seem enough when you’re starting a business. Most small business owners wear several hats throughout the day. They take care of everything from product shoots and content writing to marketing and social media promotions.
But if you don’t have the time (or skill) to do all these things, there’s a better option.
Most small business owners see remote workers as a godsend, and with good reason. For one, they’re most cost-efficient. You don’t need to hire full-time staff if you can just get project-based remote workers as needed. Also, outsourcing gives you a bigger talent pool for hiring experts who can take tedious yet crucial tasks like bookkeeping out of your hands.
If you’ve already tried outsourcing (e.g., hiring a VA), you know what I’m talking about. Otherwise, now’s your chance to learn how to find and hire the best freelancers for your small business:
Know what you need.
Before hiring a remote worker, identify which tasks you can delegate -and which ones you can’t (or shouldn’t). It also helps to list down the job responsibilities you expect your remote staff to handle from the get go.
For example, if you’ve got stellar writing skills and rely on it to drive your business growth, you can just outsource other functions like accounting or bookkeeping. In short, stick to what you’re good at or enjoy and delegate the less enjoyable tasks (or the ones you aren’t good at).
Assess your budget.
You might have heard of freelancers who charge $5 or less for a 500-word article. Yes, they do exist. However, always remember that you get what you pay for and that cheap options might cost you more later on.
Instead, find a balance between what you can afford and a potential remote worker’s rate. Don’t be shy to negotiate as well, even if the candidates you’re eyeing have higher rates. For instance, you can offer a salary increase sometime down the line if their work matches a certain level of output.
Check your network.
It’s always a good idea to ask around before you post openings on remote work platforms. Your colleagues, friends, or family members might be able to recommend someone they’ve already worked with and can vouch for.
You can also use your social media accounts to cast a wider net. After all, you never know which of your acquaintances might be just the person for the job.
Post on job boards.
Online job boards can give you a vast pool of options, especially if you’re looking for writers, virtual assistants, or graphic designers. Plenty of candidates frequent these sites, so they’ll definitely notice your job posts.
Keep in mind that you have to be specific with your requirements, though. Always indicate your project’s duration, number of working hours, and the actual job responsibilities. You may also specify the starting salary for the position or invite applicants to provide their asking rates when they apply.
The goal is to be as specific as possible so you can find your ideal candidates faster.
Narrow down your applicants.
Expect to receive many applications once you post on online platforms. While it’s good to have many options, weeding through them can also be a headache.
Check portfolios and screen applications to sort out the applicants. Once you’re done with that, you can reach out to a handful and give them short assignments as a test. (Be sure to compensate them properly for such, however.) This way, you can accurately gauge their skills and see how they work with actual deadlines.
There’s a tendency to rush the hiring process when you’re short on staff. Here’s an important reminder: DON’T. The last thing you’d want is being stuck with a mediocre worker just because you didn’t hold out for the right person.
Don’t be so quick to shrug off certain quirks and red flags either. For example, applicants who don’t submit assignments on time might not work well with your internal deadlines and thus jeopardise ongoing projects.
Finding and hiring the right freelancers for your business can be challenging. This is especially true when you are completely new to outsourcing and have yet to figure out its ins and outs. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone.
Remote Staff has been the go-to provider for many Aussie SMEs and entrepreneurs when it comes to skilled remote workers from the Philippines. If you’re looking for VAs, graphic artists, writers, or sales reps to help you build your business, chances are we already have them in our talent pool.