Do you have an idea , are you thinking of starting up?
All my advices revolve around cautions an entrepreneur should take. It is usually a common stage that in the beginning with low budgets and absence of technical co-founding team or required expertise we choose to hire freelancers.
If you have thought of hiring a freelancer or a team of such and at a later stage hire them full-time, you are not thinking anything new and it might not turn out to be so everytime - please beware. Out of my experience of working with the freelancers for my Mobile App for Android and iOS as well as web to setting up my in-house team for IT Solution services, here are few tips.
1. Technical Expertise
Let’s admit no one knows it all. In technical domain especially there might be a numerous technologies you might not even be aware of. When you are hiring a freelancer, you are relying on that individual persons knowledge and capacity.
Rather if you choose a small team/organization you increase your scope of expertise you are looking for. Give it to a team of talented pool than to a single one unless you know all the technology.
2. Project Management
Usually when you work on a complete product idea, it involves many verticals and in-sync amongst them for a efficient progress is also important. When you hire multiple freelancers who don’t know each other or even if you have to provide some inputs/resource, all that happens is blame game and excuses. Things will never be on track unless you are on their head on daily basis.
Instead either you possess and implement some perfect project management skills or outsource it to an organization who itself takes care of the project progress - but here also make sure you ask them to share their project plan and keep a tap.
3. Responsibility and Accountability
A usual freelancer would take your instructions on progressing with the project, he will rarely take the onus for your deliverables and expectations. There are often disputes with freelancers based on this, and trust me after hiring over dozens of freelancers I say this- “They hardly understand your concern”.
An organization still takes a greater effort to deliver with best efforts, take responsibility and might iterate with resources anywhere needed during the project.
I have often heard, people hiring a freelancer and then worried because the freelancer left the project in between. You can never know when the person might lose interest, get some other opportunity and put your project on a back burner. You will definitely don’t want this to happen and loose your time.
While you can be strict on this but caution again - “Do not think the freelancer is equally motivated and has same vision”.
Usual freelancers are either working on multiple projects simultaneously or doing part-time work. Let's admit that there is also a limit to how much a human can work. If you assume that your freelancer is working completely with you and not looking for any other opportunity or project or anything in life you are mistaken.
Usually what I have observed that projects with freelancers hired are most likely to be delayed. It is a fact and in today's era where innovation and startups are springing up everyday you should not risk on that.
An outsource organization still might manage its resources and deploy more to reach your deadline. Make sure you set your terms strongly with them.
Hiring a freelancer does save you few bucks and helps you keep your project execution under your control but, rethink does that really at the end of the day pay good to you in long run. It is not that the outsource to a team or organization is safest, but it definitely is safer - “Tried and Tested”.