If you’re getting to the point with your business where you need an extra pair of hands but aren’t quite ready to add your first employee, you might want to hire a freelancer.
Freelancers are different to employees in a few significant ways, and there can be advantages to having freelancers working for you.
What is a freelancer?
Freelancers are self-employed workers who usually work from home or their own premises, and tend to work for a number of different clients on different projects, often at the same time.
Where to find freelancers
If you’ve done a Google search, you’ve probably found a number of sites offering to match you with a freelancer - PeoplePerHour, Guru, Upwork, and, unsurprisingly, Freelancer.com often appear near the top.
Frankly, often the best way to find a great freelancer is to call on your own professional network, then you’ll be able to get a better insight into whether they’ll be a good fit for your needs.
How much do I pay a freelancer
It can be hard to know how much to pay a freelancer when rates vary so much. Some will charge as little as £10 per hour, while others expect well into the hundreds. On average for a Virtual Assistant, you could expect to pay between £20 and £30 per hour.
How to pick the right freelancer
Much like hiring a permanent employee, you may want to interview your prospective freelancer before deciding whether or not to hire them.
The interview process may be slightly different to what you’d use for a permanent employee, though - you’re more likely to be finding out whether you could work well together and checking if the type of work that freelancer does is appropriate for your project.
The legalities of hiring a freelancer
Once you’ve found the right person, it’s important that you get the right paperwork in place. Having a contract means that both you and the freelancer you hire are legally protected should things go south at any point.
What is a contractor?
Contractors are also self-employed workers, so like freelancers they complete self assessment tax returns and are responsible for sorting out their own tax bills and National Insurance contributions. From a tax point of view, there’s really no difference between a freelancer and a contractor.
But in practice, contractors work a little differently to freelancers: usually a contractor will work for one client full-time for a set period, often in the client’s office.
If you’re engaging a freelancer or a contractor, be sure to check they have professional indemnity insurance in case they make an expensive mistake whilst working for you.
Interested in finding out more?
If you need any advice on this, in particular relating to the legal side and are needing a short contract to protect both sides or for anything else HR, please contact Julie McGovern firstname.lastname@example.org. Preventing People Problems