There was a time when even the most talented freelancers had to scramble to find enough work to stay afloat.
Small and large companies alike are coming around to the idea that freelancers are a great option for many reasons.
First and foremost, hiring a freelancer eliminates much of the overhead and cost associated with a full-time team member. Freelancers do not require benefits such as health insurance and vacation time, which can add significant expense for an employer. They do not require office space or equipment, as many of them work directly from their homes or home offices and own the devices and programs required to perform the tasks in which they specialize.
It also eliminates the pressure of hiring a full-time team member. Using a consultant allows companies the freedom to easily end a contract and move on should the relationship not work out. Some freelancers are happy to work without complicated contracts and the ability for either party to end the working relationship without the hassle that can be involved in eliminating a full-time employee. It is much costlier to go through the hiring process for a full-time employee, only to find out that person is not a good fit and must be let go.
Freelancers are ideal for providing extra assistance for small projects or for tackling a one-time task or assignment that would not make financial sense hiring an additional team member to complete. Employers have even begun to see the value in building teams of dedicated freelancers whom they can call on in a pinch to assign additional work as needed. By having skilled consultants at the ready, many companies have found the ideal balance between pleasing their clients and improving their bottom line.
Quick turnaround for projects also is more likely for consultants to achieve because they are not under the same pressures as team members or regular employees. Because they set their own schedules and choose the projects they wish to work on, they often are able to complete projects at a quicker pace with the exact same skill and expertise a team member possesses.
Consultants also are highly committed to providing a quality product or service, because future work depends on pleasing current clients, who can then provide an excellent reference or repeat business when the need arises.
Finding qualified consultants also is easier than ever thanks to services such as LinkedIn, Guru and FlexJobs. Many freelancers also have their own websites. Our next blog posting will focus on how to choose a consultant that is right for the task at hand.
Do you have any experiences you would like to share about working with freelancers? Please feel free to share them in the comments section. Feedback is both welcomed and appreciated.
Shari L. Berg is the owner/operator of The Write Reflection, and a writing professional for over 20 years.