Using freelancers can be a really big help for businesses, but especially for SMEs and start-ups where funds are likely to be tight and resources in limited supply.
Contracting out work has become commonplace in most modern industries, and there are very sound reasons why this should be. Because although the freelance worker will not always command a lower fee than an in-house member of staff would have done in the form of a wage, there are so many other factors involved that bringing in outside help will almost always result in significant financial savings.
Rare Skills for Rare Projects
Freelancers fulfil specialist roles, sometimes over a strictly limited term. Unlike employees they are not on the payroll and the employer is not responsible for them in any way beyond the terms of the specific contract in hand. Business owners do not pay employer contributions on their behalf, nor sick or holiday pay. They do not have the industrial rights enjoyed by employees and can be replaced, just as a trader who performs unsatisfactory work for a customer can be replaced. Provided the contract has not been broken, there is scope for neither recourse nor recrimination.
All employers will be mindful to keep the workforce as streamlined as they possibly can, but whereas a large corporation can still afford to employ an army of people with a multitude of different specialities and areas of expertise the SME, which in the United States is considered to be any business with fewer than 500 employees and in the European Union any less than 250, by definition will be light on manpower, cannot realistically expect to take on employees who each specialise in one very small area of the company’s operation. Where specialist services are required therefore, it makes sense to bring in outside help which can be remunerated according to the hours spent. This is especially the case in areas of work which may be unconventional and unlikely to require permanent attention. Rare skills for rare projects, as it is sometimes put.
A Larger Talent Pool
When freelancers are used to undertake specific tasks for set periods there is almost no limit to the areas of expertise which they can bring to the company. They can be deployed for accounting, building the company website, conducting company surveys and market research, content provision and SEO, secretarial services – or even tasks of a more manual nature.
They can be used to take on the work of existing staff who are sick or on leave, to plug temporary gaps in the workforce or to perform occasional tasks for which it would not be viable to take on a permanent employee. Whatever the job, there will be a freelancer who majors in that particular area because the talent pool from which you will be recruiting will be effectively infinite.
You don’t even have to find them a desk.