The Gig Economy is growing every year and currently self-employed people represent almost 15% of the UK’s overall workforce. This has been a rapidly growing trend not only in the UK but globally too.
With freelancing becoming a fairly common occupation it comes as no surprise that businesses find ways to utilise this trend for their own advantage. Many successful businesses now use self-employed people for a variety of tasks instead of hiring an in-house team member. This often includes marketing activities, such as graphic design and content writing, programming, WEB development and many more.
This is undoubtedly a smart move for a lot of businesses and we will likely be seeing more and more of it in the future. This is because using freelancers has some great benefits, including saving you two of the most valuable things in business: time and money. Let’s find out how:
It’s more cost effective
Using freelancers can actually save your business a significant amount of money. The true costs of employing someone are much higher than you may realise. Besides the set hourly wage of your employee you also have other hidden costs, such as NI and pension payments, holiday and sick pay, payroll enrollments, licenses for softwares, work equipment, training time, non-productive work time and many other overheads.
When hiring a freelancer, you only need to pay the agreed rate for the job done. You will not need to deal with payroll or pay any employer contributions – you are just acquiring their service. This can be also considered a business expense, meaning that you can save tax on it.
It saves you time
As a business owner you know how valuable your time is. You are also aware of how time-consuming the recruitment process can be.. You have to write and publish job adverts, read through dozens of applications, interview the best candidates (sometimes multiple times) and make the right decision. This doesn’t stop with the recruitment process either – after you decided to hire someone, you need to enroll them onto your payroll, create their personal access to the system, train them for the role and make other preparations for their smooth onboarding..
Getting a freelancer is much quicker and simpler than that. Using online websites for freelancing, such as Upwork or Fiverr, you can easily filter out people based on your needs and specifications. You will be presented with hundreds of profiles with ready descriptions about them, examples of previous work and their rates. There is usually no need for interviews and they will not need any training either.
An employee on-demand
Not all business tasks require an employee working for you long-term. You may just need someone for a one-time task or for the length of a project. For example, you may need a new logo design or WEB copy for a new page. Or, perhaps, you sometimes need help from a WEB developer but not often enough to hire in-house.
Freelancers will generally charge you on a project-base or with an hourly rate (providing you with estimates). This allows you to only get one when you actually need it. Even if you have a long-term relationship with a freelancer, you will not have to pay them for the time they are not working for you. In fact, if you have an urgent one-time task that needs to be done quickly, you may be able to find someone who will do it within 48 hours..
A larger talent pool to choose from
Most freelancers work from home and so they can do that from anywhere in the world with a good internet connection. What this means for you though, is that you are not limited to your own location when looking for a new team member. Using freelancers offers your business a reach to the top talent from anywhere in the world.
There is a wide number of freelancers for almost any job role you can think of.. Whether you need a copywriter or a programmer, you can be sure to have hundreds to choose from, locally or from the other side of the world..
A great perk of working with people from all over the world is the diversity you get. Usually, when you look for employees within a specific area, you get very similar people, with similar educational backgrounds and similar ways of life. However, when you hire freelancers from the other side of the globe, you can meet people with different cultures and backgrounds.
Having a more diverse set of people working for your business can be very beneficial. Different people will bring you unique and fresh ideas or new approaches to old things. Therefore, diversity helps your business constantly progress and evolve, so you don’t get stuck in the same old ways and processes..
It can provide you with great recommendations
Most freelancers work for a number of different clients and therefore end up building a network of connections around them. What this means is that you could ask your freelancer for recommendations or contacts when you are in need of a different service. This way you may be able to get someone directly through recommendations, without even paying any service fees or using agencies. Likewise, you may also gather valuable resources and tool recommendations for certain business tasks from your freelancer, since they likely had researched and tried many of them in their past experience.
Better quality of work
Freelancers are professionals in their own area of work – they specialise in a single thing and get lots of experience working with various companies. They don’t get paid for anything else but getting the job right and on time. The quality of their work is directly related to how much money they can charge for it, how many positive reviews they get and how much work they will get in the future. You can, therefore, always expect a freelancer to provide you with top quality work.
Of course, be aware that the rates freelancers charge generally increase with their experience and the quality of their work. Someone who is starting as a self-employed person may charge you a very low rate just because they have no previous work to show you or no reviews on their profile
It’s easier to find the right person for the job
As mentioned before, freelancers usually have online profiles with portfolios of their previous work. This allows you to see what sort of work the person is capable of. You can then find an example of their work that is similar to what you need and be completely sure that the freelancer will know what you expect from them.
Additionally, freelancing websites allow people to leave reviews and testimonials under an individual’s profile. This is essentially like asking for employment references when hiring a new worker, just without the hassle of contacting other people. The reviews will tell you whether the person is professional and pleasant to work with.
Outsourcing certain business activities can be significantly beneficial to businesses. Not only can it save you time, money and other resources but it can also ensure a top quality, professional and efficient service at all times. There are many different business functions that you can outsource to freelancers or professional firms, including marketing activities, accounting and bookkeeping, payroll management, IT support or WEB development..