How to Hire the Right Freelancer

Temporary and fluid work arrangements cannot match the productivity of a skilled and full-time salaried employee in so many ways

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
You're reading Entrepreneur Asia Pacific, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Every day, 10 out of 50 customers who contact us, complain. A lot of people have burned their money and their time with freelancers. Upwork is world's biggest freelancing site with millions of freelancers, selling crap. Have you not read their reviews yet?


Business News Daily cited a 2017 Manta study as to why businesses, especially startups, are shrinking away from the prospect of hiring freelancers. Temporary and fluid work arrangements cannot match the productivity of a skilled and full-time salaried employee in so many ways.

The US National Bureau of Economic Research estimates the gig economy grew by approximately 5% between 2010 and 2015, but Manta's research shows 75% of small business owners never hire freelancers. Additionally, 85% don't have future plans to hire gig economy workers, while 73% have stated that they have no plans to utilise online marketplaces like Upwork.

So why do people turn away from the prospects of freelancers? Why are businesses turning away from the gig economy? Slowly, but steadily, the realisation is setting in. Freelancers can chain you to your desk!

It's Not Their Problem, It's Your Problem

  • Quality comes with price and experience, then why would you decide on a cheap freak? If you pay peanuts, you will get monkeys.
  • Why you have not checked his/her past work?
  • Why you have not done proper diligence? Have you spoken to his/her past customer?
  • Have you tried freelancer in a relatively small project before outsourcing the complete work?

When You Should Hire a Freelancer

When you know what you are getting, you are a developer or have CTO; if you can't audit or advise, there's a good chance you will fail. Someone who is very successful in getting work done with a freelancer uses proper processes for code audit, backup, task assignment, effort calculation and runs the daily meeting.

Taste the Water, Before Wasting your Wine!

Try something small and of a fixed scope first, like writing a piece, logo design, proofreading, etc. If you lose them, you won't waste a lot of time and money. If you are planning to hire him for app development, give him a small assignment and see how it goes.

  • Common Problems With Freelancers

Sometimes they just don't Pick up your Call Many a time, freelancers take an advance payment and as a good connection is built, they just stop picking up the phone or answering emails. They even close down their Linkedin, Facebook and WhatsApp accounts!

Starting Price is Mostly Small But It Keeps Adding Up

Most of the freelancers make a mess when you ask for customization. In the beginning, to get the account, they won't charge much but as you go they keep demanding more. When you have your string attached, it really is a pain to find a new guy. After all, what's the guarantee the next one would be right?

Planning Is Guessing

70% of projects are not delivered on time because planning is guessing. Depending on the customer's urgency, freelancers give a time. In most cases, those get delayed and you lose opportunity cost.


So, consider the facts, rather than relying on credentials that may be fake. Freelancers don't offer the same commitment levels as full-time employees, quite simply because they don't have the time or value for your business growth goals. For them, time is simply money. They don't want to invest it in your business. Rather, their focus is on growing their clientele and building their portfolio. Work with employees who value your brand and steer clear of freelancers. If you do wish to hire a freelance worker, a thorough background check and fail-safe options are essential, as is a means to track their work and ensure accountability. That way, you get what you pay for and it's well worth the time!