HR & Management

Five reasons you should hire freelancers

5 min read

15 June 2016

For a SME with a small team and limited resources, every cog in the machine of the business counts. So why not consider freelancers to ease the stress of recruitment?

The process of recruiting new staff can be tense, long, draining on time and once someone is hired – there is the training, the process of fitting in and the ongoing need for performance. Freelancers therefore can offer a great alternative.

Here are five reasons why you should consider freelancers when you’re thinking of hiring:

(1) Ultimate professionals

Most freelancers have been at the sharp end of their trade for a long time and experienced more working environments than employees that have stayed in one company.

Surviving as a freelancer is hard to impossible if you are not professional. Freelancers can’t have many bad days or they’ll be ditched, so they tend not to waste time when they are commissioned. They get hired by the quality of their work samples and clients.

The difference between a freelancer and an employee is that freelancers know that if they don’t do work, they simply don’t get paid. Now that is motivation! They prove themselves with results, not talk – and they know if they fail they will not get rehired.

It is often a commission by commission arrangement and impressing the hell out of clients is something that freelancers try to do so they can secure the next gig.

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(2) Motivated to survive

Whilst some employers may be concerned that freelancers are at arm’s length and out of sight, wasting time perhaps, this perception could hardly be further from the truth. Freelancers work all hours and odd hours to get things done.

They don’t have the luxury of personal interactions to cosy up and feel comfortable with their feet under the table at work. There aren’t always water cooler jokes and pub outings that can sway opinion. They strive to meet the brief and often over-service clients to get the right results.

Continue on the next page for the three final reasons that freelancers could be a Godsend.

(3) Cost effective

This is a big plus and a major reason to hire freelancers. Whilst a day rate may be more than an employee day wage for a good freelancer – there are no recruitment fees, you pay when the job is done, there is no insurance, no holiday pay, no retirement fund, no pay rise demands, no office equipment to set up and, dependent on the arrangement – no expenses either. Freelancers are not only convenient but they are cost effective.

Women leading the way for the UK's independent professionals

(4) Plug-in workers for projects

The great thing about freelancers is that they can plug in and plug out of companies when required so there is no dead time, every day’s work is meaningful. There is rarely a month’s notice or gardening leave to consider – it’s a job-by-job, or ongoing month-by-month agreement and anything in-between.

Some clients try before they buy, by commissioning a freelancer for a small project before committing to an on-going arrangement. Could you do that with staff? Probably not.

(5) Fresh ideas

When you bring in “newbies” who have not been indoctrinated into a work culture and potentially smothered with the expected way of doing things or seeing things, then you can get surprisingly fresh ideas.

Sometimes freelancers see obvious flaws or opportunities that have been missed. As they are hired for their knowhow they are less afraid to have opinions if they prove helpful.

They come to the table with new eyes to see your company and what it needs to improve. This harks back to freelancers having multiple clients and broad experience. It is common for freelancers to cross-pollinate ideas from companies where the right way or a good methodology is identified.

They have seen what works and does not work in other companies and can bring that experience to the fore.

Richard Forsyth is the director of Find a Creative Pro – a free website for hiring creative freelancers.

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