Whether you’re hiring on-site staff or freelancers, it’s vital to ask the right questions during the interview process. You are an information seeker. Based on the answers you receive will let you determine if the freelancer lines up with your wants and needs. There have been many people who failed to do this and received disappointing results. It’s great to outsource jobs and tasks for freelancers to do but be prepared to take your time for the right one. The following will discuss what five important questions you should ask a potential freelancer before hiring them.
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Can I See Some Previous Work?
You have a right to ask the freelancer about their previous work and experience. Most freelancers will have a portfolio, pictures, or links to their past creations. It should reflect their best work to date. Once they send you the pertinent information about their prior work, make sure you look at them. It will give you a better feel for the person you are talking to. If you’re looking for something specific, ask the freelancer if they have other examples that fit your criteria.
What Do Others Say About You?
Asking about past clients is a great idea. You can take what they say, but also dive even deeper by looking at reviews. If they work off a freelancing site, there is usually a section of customer reviews, people who have worked with the freelancer before. They will rate their overall experience. If you notice a lot of low scores and troublesome comments, this could indicate that it would be best not to hire them.
How Do You Handle Constructive Criticism?
Many people can be sensitive about their work and not handle criticism very well. That’s why it’s best to criticize constructively. You don’t want to be apprehensive about hurting your freelancer’s feelings. You will want to be able to work with someone who makes you feel comfortable. You want to offer corrections (if applicable) and be honest about what you want.
Decent freelancers will understand constructive criticism and react accordingly. The response to feedback will sometimes vary depending on the freelancer’s experience and skill level. Those who are fresh on the job market might be more inclined to have hurt emotions over criticism than the more seasoned freelancers. Regardless, listen to what they have to say, how they act, and respond to your comments. This will be immeasurably helpful to you in the long run.
Do You Collaborate Well?
Working well with others seems like an obvious thing to have to do in the business world. It doesn’t matter the type of work you do because having to do collaborations is a given in most industries. The end goal is to have everyone on the same page about the project in question. This is where reviews will come in handy again.
In this digital time of ours, using collaboration tools also helps keep everyone in the loop. Things like Google Docs and other online tools help with that. If your freelancer is aware, and better yet, uses these tools, it will make collaborating run more smoothly. In other instances, the freelance website will have a place to communicate and attach documents and work to one another.
Are You Able to Deliver Quality Work?
Some people like to see a sample of work by the freelancer to see how they will handle jobs to come. It acts as a trial run for both you and the freelancer. Unfortunately, some freelancers are only in it for the money. This sometimes results in mistakes being made that could have been easily avoided. If you hire a freelancer with a keen eye for detail, you will thank yourself later. You will be confident that they will produce quality work every single time.
As stated already, asking for a sample job from the freelancer is a good idea if you want to see how you guys work together and if you want to look at the quality (or lack thereof) of work produced. It should be a paid sample (for an incentive). This allows both of you the opportunity to get a feel for things to come.
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There are many freelance websites online where you can hire freelancers: Freelancer, Upwork, LinkedIn, Fiverr, and Facebook (to name a few). Or you can do it the old-fashioned way and ask around for any recommendations. People in your industry won’t be hard-pressed to share their opinions about freelancers they’ve used (good or bad).
Don’t be afraid to ask these questions and others. You should be able to get what you want when it comes to your freelancer. Remember, good communication is key to a lasting work relationship. Be open and honest about what you expect from the job so there won’t be anything that gets misconstrued. This should also include a discussion about deadlines. These need to be very clearly outlined.
Lastly, as the employer, make sure to pay a fair wage to your freelancer and give credit and compliments when necessary. Don’t go overboard, however, you want to make sure your freelancer feels appreciated so they will be happy and continue to produce a quality job.