9 simple tips for managing freelancers

Keeping track of your hired freelancers can seem impossible. Make it easier by following these 9 simple tips for managing freelancers.

9 simple tips for managing freelancers

Are you experiencing more demand than ever for your services as a freelancer? If so, you might want to look into hiring other freelancers to collaborate with you on projects.

Alternatively, perhaps you're an employer or business owner who needs to hire a team of freelancer workers?

Managing freelancers comes with quite a bit of responsibility. If you don't plan correctly and handle the details right, you could run into various issues. Such as miscommunication, billing complexities, missed deadlines, and subpar work.

However, the good news is that with the right approach and tools, you can successfully manage a team of freelancers with a minimum of hiccups.

1. Plan your needs ahead of time

One of the first tips for managing freelancers effectively is to plan for your needs ahead of time. There's nothing worse than scrambling around last minute trying to find the right freelancers for the job.

Unless you get lucky and happen to find just the right people in time, you run the risk of sabotaging the quality of your project. Instead, try to predict your needs, and scout out the right freelancers ahead of time.

2. Develop a freelancer network

Besides anticipating your freelancer needs, you should also try to build up a network of freelancers you trust and whose work you like.

If you yourself are a freelancer, it can be hard to map out when exactly you will need help. You might land a big project from a client that you didn't expect, and suddenly you find you need help.

This is the time when having an existing network of freelancers can really help.

3. Tell your client that you have a team

If you're planning to bring on other freelancers to help you with a project, it's essential that you inform your client. Telling them ahead of time that you have a team will set their mind at ease if they spot something in the project that looks a little different.

If you let a client assume that you're doing all the work, and parts of it look like it was handled by someone else, this can come across as sloppy, unprofessional, or even scammy.

On the other hand, if you make it clear from the get-go that you have a team on hand of trusted freelancers who are working with you, most clients won't have a problem with this.

4. Brief freelancers with a project outline

When it comes time to begin collaborations, one of the most important things to start with for managing freelancers effectively is clear project outlines.

Presenting potential freelancers with clear, comprehensive project outlines is essential for avoiding misunderstandings down the line and ensuring that the collaboration will be a success.

A good project outline should let potential freelancers know exactly what the scope of work is, how much they will be paid, what the deliverables are, the timeframes for them, and so on.

From this, they can then make an informed decision on whether or not they wish to take on the project.

5. Create comprehensive contracts

Once a freelancer has reviewed your project outline and accepted the job, the next important step is to create a comprehensive contract for the project.

A thorough contract will detail the responsibilities of both you and the freelancer. Having this in place is essential not only for managing freelancers but also for protecting yourself legally.

However, creating a binding contract from scratch can take time and effort. Is the mere idea of this making you want to lay your head on your keyboard?

If so, we have good news. With Hectic's proposal and contract builder, you can create proposals and project outlines which you can then easily turn these into professional contracts for your projects, complete with vetted legal terminology and e-signatures.

Using freelance management tools like this can save you time, expense, and protect you from issues around confidentiality and intellectual rights.

6. Automate collaboration, time tracking, and invoicing with the right tools

Keeping track of projects and deliverables can get tricky. Keeping track of freelancers who are helping you with these projects can be even trickier.

To save time and minimize complications, it's essential that you invest in systems and freelance management tools to automate your collaborations. Things like time tracking features and invoicing that integrates with workflows and project management can reduce your workload considerably.

For instance, with Hectic, you can give freelancers controlled access to your projects within the app. From here, they can complete deliverables, and invoice you. You can then combine all billable hours per project and roll it into one big invoice for your client.

Besides these benefits, Hectic also makes it easy for freelancers under you to work with each other. Through the project management feature, they can see what tasks and deliverables have been completed, and how theirs fits into the overall workflow.

Instead of having to email your freelancers to find out the status of deliverables, you can simply log into your Hectic account, and instantly see where your projects are at. With real-time editing and task update notifications, you never have to be in the dark on the status of your deliverables.

To learn more about how Hectic can help you in managing freelancers, check our collaboration and team features here.

7. Communicate clearly and frequently

Besides leveraging the right freelance management tools, you also need to focus on communication.

Collaboration tools can go a long way in keeping you and your freelancers on the same page. However, it's still critical that you make a point of communicating clearly and frequently.

Research has shown that virtual teams face some definite challenges and barriers to communication. However, good communication is essential for collaboration success.

Therefore, concentrate on being as clear and specific as possible in all your communications when managing freelancers. If you feel that a freelancer might not have understood you 100%, reach back out and see if they need extra clarification. If you're not entirely sure what a freelancer meant in one of their communications with you, make a point of always double-checking their meaning.

In short, if you are wondering how to manage freelancers, the answer is: with lots of good communication!

8. Don't hire the cheapest freelancers

According to statistics, in most countries, freelancers earn more than average workers. That said, there are still a lot of freelancers charging cheap rates out there.

When it comes to managing freelancers, the tips above won't be of much help if you bring on the wrong collaborators. For the collaboration to be a success, you invariably need the right people with the right skills and experience.

Usually, you get what you pay for, so avoid hiring the cheapest freelancers you find. Sometimes you might get lucky and find someone who is capable but still building their portfolio. However, usually, to get good quality work done you need to offer good quality pay.

9. Show appreciation

Lastly, one of our final tips for managing freelancers is to show appreciation. Research shows that appreciation motivates employees to work harder, and the same holds true for freelancers.

If a freelancer does good work for you, don't forget to thank them, and let them how much it's helped you. Not only might this make them even more motivated on future projects with you, but it also fosters an amicable and flowing relationship.

Make managing freelancers made easy with Hectic's collaborative features

If you're starting to see bigger projects rolling in, hiring a small team of freelancers can be the ingredient you need to nail those deliverables on time. However, if you're not managing these freelancers effectively, hiring on help can turn into a nightmare.

Fortunately, with the tips and tools up your sleeve, you can manage your freelance team like a boss.

Hectic is the ultimate one-stop platform for freelancers like you. Whether you are working on your own or managing freelancers on a bigger project, Hectic puts you in charge.

With Hectic, you can easily track hours worked, the status of deliverables, get a birds-eye view of your entire project, and much more.

Instead of spending all your time handling unnecessary admin related to managing freelancers on your projects, sign up today to enjoy all these features, plus gain your first client for free forever.

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