If you need extra help in your business, then hiring a freelancer is a terrific idea. Freelancers allow you to hire experts in a field you may not be well-versed in or to complete tasks you don’t have time for. They can help you get your time back and even save money since you won’t have the overhead of a full-time employee. Additionally, hiring a freelancer creates a lower risk for your business. After all, if things don’t go right, you haven’t spent a massive chunk of time in paperwork, training, and orientation. Last but not least, freelancers can bring a fresh new perspective to your business. Before you take the plunge, it is crucial to have a plan for finding and hiring freelancers, so here are our top 5 tips:

1. Prioritize which type of freelancer your business needs.

You may be extremely busy or overwhelmed and think you just need general help. But hiring a freelancer without a clear strategy can prolong your results. Sit down by yourself, or with a team, and jot down all the areas you need help with. Then order them from high priority to low priority. Look at your list and think about your marketing calendar, season, and backlogs. If you feel stuck in this first step, then check out our blog post all about the top 5 freelancers that your small business needs.

2. Create a budget and consider the timeframe on how long you will want or need a freelancer

Yes, freelancers can help you save a lot of money but don’t think they will cost pennies. After all, you get what you pay for. Establish a budget so you can relay that to the freelancer and so everyone is on the same page. If you are clueless about what they may charge, then check out a blog post we did all about determining freelancer rates.

3. Use a trustworthy website to find your freelancer

Here at Muses, we are known for helping small businesses find great talent for creative services like photography, social media marketing, blogging, copywriting, videography and graphic design. Post a gig today for only $10, and you can sort through insanely talented potential candidates in various categories. Plus, it is super easy to communicate with them via our app. You can also ask around your local network and check  Facebook groups. Make sure to get recommendations and reviews.

Bonus tip: Write a clear job title and a clear description. If the job posting itself is confusing, then you are basically starting the relationship on the wrong foot.

4. Vet your freelancers

Once you have narrowed down a list of potential candidates, it is vital that you ask for work samples. This is easier than hiring someone in-house, but you still want an interview process after all. Ask questions so you get a feel for their personality and experience to see if they are a good fit for your business. Here is a mini checklist:

  • Check for work samples
  • Check availability
  • Check communication. Is the candidate available to discuss the project and provide timely responses?
  • Ask for references
  • Make sure you have ownership of the final work
  • Check reviews and past gigs

5. Create a contract/agreement for the project at hand

You want to be able to protect yourself, so there are no issues. Having an agreement is also a great way to establish clear expectations to eliminate any miscommunication.

Hiring a freelancer for the first time may feel like unfamiliar territory, but if you follow our tips above, you will have a set strategy and plan that you can use over and over again.

Are you ready to post your first gig? We are here to help.