There’s lots of freelance help available on the internet, from writers, editors, proofreaders and other professionals in the writing industry to software developers, graphic designers, web designers and all manner of other technical and business specialists.
Now quite easy to find and hire the right contractor for your job at the ideal price. If you require assistance with a technical project, such as software development or web programming, then you will find exchanges such as RentACoder.com that specialize in such areas and arrange their participants according to their unique skills.
Employing an outsourcing exchange is fast and effortless. You only post a description of your job requirements (in sufficient detail to permit a contractor to estimate its price ) and within hours you will get proposals from a range of freelance experts, each one eager to win your company.
You can also use an outsourcing exchange for a research tool, to get an idea of the probable cost of a development project which you might be considering. But you need to beware of posting without awarding a contract, since this will earn you the reputation of a time-waster and might adversely impact the response you get to future postings. As a purchaser of freelance services, posting your needs is usually free. It’s the builder who pays for access to this service, either as a monthly subscription or as a percent commission on the value of contracts awarded.
If you opt to award a contract in response to a posting, you can protect yourself (and the contractor) using escrow payments. You merely pre-pay the contract value into an escrow account (an interim bank accounts given by the exchange operator) knowing it will only be released to the contractor when you affirm the job has been completed to your satisfaction. Likewise, the builder gains from the reassurance which funds are allowed to pay for his services. For complex projects, it’s even feasible to administer phased payments through the escrow accounts and, in case of a dispute, make the most of an arbitration services.
One of the advantages of online outsourcing exchanges is that they offer access to builders from all around the world. Several countries (including India and parts of Eastern Europe) have very low labor rates but a highly skilled and professional workforce, which makes it feasible to purchase high-quality services very efficiently. The majority of these professionals talk and write English to a very high standard, which makes proper communication no more difficult that using a local contractor. The instantaneous nature of online communication means it is no longer required to collaborate face-to-face.
Clearly, using freelance contractors isn’t without its dangers. To Ensure Your project delivers the results you’re expecting, you need to follow a few simple guidelines:
Create a budget for your whole project so you understand how much each facet should cost. This will let you assess the general feasibility before you begin spending money on builders.
Write a detailed specification for all your freelancer requirements.
When appropriate, use a non-disclosure arrangement before sending the specification out to bidders. If so, it’ll be required to post a job overview from the freelancer exchange and to run a closed bidding procedure.
Get a fixed price quote before assigning work to any freelancer. If a freelancer is not able to supply a fixed-price quote, it might be an indication your requirement specification isn’t sufficiently detailed or clear – a warning sign of trouble ahead.
Administer your freelance mission working with a written legal contract that clearly specifies time limits, fees, dispute procedures, confidentiality, ownership and other contractual conditions.
If at all you can, use the market’s escrow payment service to protect yourself and the builder.
If you choose the freelance route, it’s important to make certain that all rights to gain from the last item, or any substances produced in its production, remain yours. If you don’t, it’s likely that a contractor used to donate to your job could claim the result as his very own and use or sell it independently when it’s completed.
You should keep a paper trail linking to anybody with whom you discuss your project, such as emails, letters, faxes, and even written records of phone conversations. This will establish the connection between you and your contractors, and will demonstrate the origin of any confidential specifics. Though this paper course may never be required, if problems arise you will be glad you made that little additional effort.