Want to make your freelancers cry? Of course you don’t. You want to ensure your freelancers are happy working with you, so much so that you become their favorite client.
(Quick side note: becoming their favorite client benefits you because they will work hard to deliver their best work for you.)
But if you’re so successful that you believe that you don’t need to treat your external workforce as well as they deserve, if you believe that finding terrific freelancers is quite easy and you’ll be able to snap your fingers and find replacements for unhappy freelancers who leave you (hint: you won’t!), keep reading and perform the following three steps. You’ll have your freelancers (not so) silently cursing your name in no time! However, if you want grow your freelancer and vendor relationship, then do the exact opposite of these steps.
1. Don’t treat them like the highly talented professionals they are.
Too many businesses think members of a freelance workforce work as contractors because they can’t get a “real” job. That is, they can’t find an employer who wants to hire them full-time, with benefits and other perks.
Wrong! So. Many. Highly. Talented. Professionals. WANT to work as freelancers! Especially those with hard-to-find, in-demand skills, such as coders, web developers, programmers, internet marketers, security specialists, etc.
So go ahead: treat your highly skilled external workforce as “less than.” See how long they stick around.
2. Forget that you’re not their only client.
Yes, as we said above, treat your external workforce extremely well and they’ll treat you well in return. But you need to remember that as much as they love you, they may have a few to a few dozen additional clients. Clients that have deadlines and needs, and which sometimes may take precedence over your deadlines and needs.
After all, chances are great you aren’t paying them a full-time contract fee and, well, baby needs new shoes (and a college fund). So your contractors are providing top-notch services for you as well as other businesses. They will want to get that project done for you, but they just can’t drop everything when you come calling.
Remember, if your employees are on a tight deadline for other managers, could you expect them to drop everything for you project? Probably not.
So it’s best to provide a good lead time and be flexible in your deadline expectations with your contractors.
3. Be a flake.
Yes, too many freelancers have given the profession a bad name: they disappear without warning – in mid-project. They don’t have the skills they said they did. They’re late in project delivery and then they balk when it comes time to make changes (“How DARE you question my work!?”)
But businesses can be flaky, too. So if you want to be the not-go-to-client make sure to:
– Provide unclear expectations.
– Expect five major project changes without offering to pay for the additional time it takes the contractor to do so (if it’s considerable).
– Pay 90 days out or, if you really want to peeve a freelancer, tell them you’ll pay 30 days out, but only pay six months out and only after your remote worker has emailed you politely several times inquiring as to payment.
So How Do You Thrill Your Freelance Workforce?
Use Aysling, our Vendor Management module is a great tool to help you with your freelancer management (as well as with vendor management):
– Your remote workforce can invoice you directly within the system… and you can pay them directly into their checking account. Talk about happy, quickly paid contractors!
– You can onboard them pretty much exactly as you do any full-time employee, helping freelancers feel that they are a true and important part of your team.
– Your contractors can list their skills, especially those hard-to-find skills that they alone have, thus helping you choose the best freelancer for a particular project.
– They also can list when they are – and aren’t – available for a project. This helps both of you plan ahead – or helps you find another contractor.
– And more.
Whether you want to keep your freelance workforce happy or your vendors, the Aysling VMS platform helps you do so easily and – yes we’ll say it – effortlessly! Clients, vendors, employees, contractors: you’ll manage their needs efficiently and easily.
Click here to learn more about Aysling today!