As Industry 4.0 continues to cut jobs, more and more people join the ever-growing gig economy. Some undertake freelance jobs from time to time to add extra income while others see freelancing as their primary source of income.
However, there are still more freelancers than freelance jobs and this is seen as an advantage by many recruiters. At the same time, quality work and relevant experience are not so easy to find. Some freelancers tend to sell themselves well but fail to deliver once assigned a freelance job. Others grab as many freelance gigs as they can fearing that there may be no stable flow of work in the next months. Inevitably, juggling with many clients at the same time leads to missed deadlines and moderate quality of work.
To add complexity, in most cases, freelancers are needed to address temporary but urgent hiring needs.
In the past, event management and digital marketing agencies enjoyed retainers and predictable cash flow. Nowadays, many industries have shifted to project basis to address clients’ preferences. Having full-time employees on payroll all the time is no longer a viable option as it is hard to utilize their time. Instead, a small number of key employees are kept as full-time employees on payroll, the rest are freelancers who are hired ad-hock to deliver on a new project.
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So, what can help fill in Freelance Jobs faster?
Looks for HR Tools and Technologies that are trusted by recruiters! Tools like our Transformify Freelance Platform helped fill freelance jobs by monitoring the time to fill-of various freelance jobs. We found that there were several factors impacting the time to fill and the quality of the applicants.
The Job Description
It comes at no surprise that well-written job descriptions providing clear information about the length of the engagement, the scope of work, the size of the team the freelancer will be working with, the working hours and the company itself, attracted lots of quality candidates. In addition, candidates tend to flip through very long job descriptions searching for the pieces of information that are important to them. A good job description is less than 300 words and provides all necessary information about the project and the perks if any.
The Job Title
Fancy job titles attract fewer quality applicants. The reason is simple – the freelancers want to immediately understand what is required from them, what is the desired level of experience and expertise and if the job is right for them. An experienced Java Developer is unlikely to search for ‘’ Java Guru’’ or to click on such a title even if s/he sees it on the list of available jobs. As most job sites list both full-time and freelance jobs, adding ‘’Freelance Job’’ to the title is likely to attract more candidates as they immediately see that this is a freelance job and not a full-time in-office role. A good example of a highly attractive job title would be ‘’ Java Developer – Freelance Job’’.
Work from home freelance jobs are much more attractive than in-office jobs. Quality candidates enjoy the flexibility and no daily commute. Looking at Transformify Freelance Platform stats, all freelance jobs flagged as ‘’Remote Jobs’’ have attracted 300% more candidates than traditional in-office jobs. However, there is an exception – highly-skilled consultants like SAP and Oracle experts are required to work from an office due to privacy, security and other business-related reasons. As these highly skilled experts normally work as independent contractors and are highly paid, such roles attract many qualified applicants even though they are required to work in-office.
In all cases, adding a flag that highlights if this is a work from home freelance job or the candidate is expected to commute to the office of the company or even to relocate to another city or country. A good example of contract jobs requiring relocation is oil & gas engineering jobs in the UAE and Dubai in particular. Mostly, these are 6-month to 1-year contracts that require the candidates to relocate to the Middle East to deliver the job.
Most freelance jobs can be divided into three categories:
- Freelance gigs per hour;
- Milestone projects;
- Long-term freelance jobs.
Some freelance platforms like PeoplePerHour, Upwork, Fiverr, etc. are mostly focused on freelance gigs per hour, while others like Transformify, help offer long-term freelance jobs. Knowing your hiring needs and the likelihood for the freelance project to be extended, helps a lot. Most recruiters don’t state that the freelance job is initially a 10-hour project, but it is likely to be extended due to business needs. An experienced freelancer is likely to be attracted to a long-term project as it will secure stable cash flow in the long run.
Recruiters are strongly advised to clearly state the project duration and to provide information about any possible extensions. This can increase the number of quality candidates by 200%.
Test Freelance Jobs
Paid tests are strongly recommended as there are industry specifics and a candidate who has experience with the FinTech industry may not be capable of delivering a project in the e-commerce industry even if both projects are using the same technology stack. In the past, we had a PHP developer who had excellent references and a number of successful e-commerce projects but was not able to address the needs of a marketplace as it is a completely different business model. Asking freelancers to complete paid test projects also reveals their communications style and if they fit in the team. Excellent communication skills are required if the candidate will be assigned to a work from home freelance job. Inefficient communication can lead to poor quality overall, bottlenecks and frustration even if freelancers are true experts in their field.
Apps or tools like Transformify’s Freelance Platform allows projects to be easily copied to create 10-hour paid test freelance jobs.
It is considered as a bad practice to ask freelancers to complete unpaid test freelance jobs. Even if they are not a good fit, their time is still to be paid as it has been spent on the job.
What skills are needed to deliver a particular freelance job? What skills are “must-have” and what skills are “nice to have”?
Many recruiters tend to mix skills that are absolutely necessary to complete a freelance job with skills that may add value but have no significant impact on the quality of work overall. As skills are actually keywords used by freelancers when searching for freelance jobs online, recruiters are encouraged to list the “must-have” skills to ensure that the job listing will attract the right candidates.
Sourcing freelancers and filing in freelance jobs quickly can be a breeze if recruiters step in the shoes of freelancers, include enough information in the job description and use clear job titles identifying if it is a remote freelance job, in-office freelance job or a regular full-time job that offers some level of work flexibility.
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