You don’t need a humongous budget when you begin outsourcing, but what you do need is the knowledge of HOW to get the best online workers possible. After all, no matter how much work you outsource, it’s still your business and your reputation on the line. Not to mention the fact that better work equates into better profits, both short and long term. Doesn’t it just make sense to find the very best people possible to work in your business?
Whether you are a seasoned pro at outsourcing or you’ve never hired anyone to do anything before, here are some proven tips to get you moving with the least amount of hassle and the highest return for your money.
1. Be absolutely clear on what you want done. Whether you are posting a job or giving instructions to someone you’ve already hired, tell them step by step exactly what you want them to do. This will save you time, aggravation, and usually get the job done faster. Plus the bids you receive will tend to be lower, since the people doing the bidding can easily envision exactly what they’re doing and how long it will take. Lastly, if you are paying by the hour then this will save you money, as your worker doesn’t need to take the time to figure out how to accomplish what you want done.
2. In being clear, consider either writing out what needs to be done in a step by step fashion, or make a video showing them exactly what to do. This way you are not only showing your present worker what to do, you’re also creating a blueprint for future workers to follow. In addition, if there is a hole in your plan it will become quite clear when you’re going through the steps necessary to achieve your goal.
3. Have an agreement or contract between you and the worker. Things you might include are:
Work to be done (Detailed description of what is expected)
Deadline for the work to be done
Payment arrangement (Amount to be paid, terms, method of payment, etc.)
Copyright (You’ll want it to be crystal clear that you own all copyrights)
Non-disclosure (Your worker is not to reveal anything that goes on inside your business, etc.)
4. Check out your worker prior to hiring them. Check their portfolio, references, feedback, etc. You might also Google them. Try to get an idea of the kind of work this person does and whether or not they meet deadlines. Also important: How well they communicate with you.
5. Start with something small and work up from there. If you’ve never hired someone before, choose a small job first. It makes it easier for you to get your feet wet, minimizes your risk, and allows you to experience how wonderful it is to have someone else handling that small chore that you don’t enjoy doing anyway.
6. Find the workers who do well with the small jobs and then give them bigger tasks to do. Rather than hiring someone for a large project, let them show you what they can do with a small one first. They’re testing the waters with you, finding that you do indeed pay on time and you’re someone they can work with. And you’re finding out what kind of work they do, if they meet deadlines and if their style meshes with yours. If it’s a good fit, offer them more work and bigger jobs. If not, move on.
7. For any big job, don’t pay all at once. For example, rather than paying all up front or all when the job is done, you might pay 25% up front, 25% when the job is half done, and 50% when the job is finished. This provides them with plenty of incentive to keep working, since they know you pay and there is more money to come. Plus, if the work isn’t to your satisfaction, you can stop the work before you’ve shelled out too much money.
8. Let them know to contact you if they have questions they can’t find the answer to. It’s important that they and your project not get stalled simply because they’re missing a key piece of information.
9. Have them keep in touch daily. You might ask them to send you a report at the end of the day detailing what they accomplished on the project, any challenges they’re facing and of course any questions they might have.
10. Keep your relationships professional. That is, don’t hire your best buddy because he needs the work – you’ll only end up with problems. Also, if someone you hire is really nice but not performing, you’ve got to set aside your feelings and deal with the situation from a business standpoint. This is, after all, your livelihood.
11. Let your workers know exactly what you expect and give lots of feedback. Don’t make them wonder if they’re doing a good job, tell them. Don’t just pick out the one mistake they made in the 100 articles they wrote for you, also tell them what they did right and let them know you appreciate their work. The more positive feedback you can give, the harder they will work for you, and the easier it will be for them to take constructive criticism as well.
12. If you think you might change your mind, let them know ahead of time. For example, you decide to take a project in a certain direction, all the while wondering if you shouldn’t be doing it differently. Let them know you might be changing things halfway through, and if it comes to pass they’ll be ready for it.
13. Always treat your workers with the utmost respect. It goes without saying, but I will anyway: Just because they’re working for you doesn’t mean they are less than you. Being respectful of your workers will yield you 10 – fold in goodwill and hard work. Think back to when you had a boss – who did you go the extra mile for? The boss who yelled and screamed and put you down? Or the boss who was positive, treated you with respect and brought out the best in you? Be the good boss and you will have workers who are loyal and ready to set aside their other work to get yours done faster and better.