For the new age, anyone can start a business as long as you offer a marketable product or service. But the high employee and overhead costs might keep most of you from thriving into new heights. But then, the rise of freelancers bridged this gap. It eliminated most of these costs (such as office space and other employment incidentals) with even increasing productivity. We can even find at least state 5 reasons why you should hire remote workers and freelancers. Neat right? So you just need to hire freelancers and you will be worry free, right? WRONG! Finding the perfect freelancer in this global pool of talents might be daunting. In fact, you might even encounter your worst nightmare. Even just one bad apple can ruin the whole bunch. What to do then? We can't be 100% lucky to get the right people right away. Here are 8 red flags you should watch out for when hiring your freelancer.
Emails that Are Not Personalized If you read an application straight from a template, how can you ensure the value they are providing? I mean, the applicant didn't even tailor fit some parts with the person they are talking too. This is a red flag. You want someone who has the intention to provide a solution. If they don't have the time to at least put some effort in their email, it's an early sign to say next.
Grammar Errors and Typos in the Email No one is perfect. I understand that we all make mistakes. And if English is not their native tongue, they might have difficulty expressing in it. But with all the grammar checking apps (like Grammarly), how can you make simple errors? And if ever it's unintentional, it says a lot about their character. Did you even bother checking again? This carelessness might be normal in passing their work.
Painfully Late Responses Communication is certainly a problem for freelancing. With employees outside your country and time zones, asking for that urgent output is more difficult than in an office setup. If you have an aspiring remote worker, response time should be considerably prompt. I mean, 24 hours might be a good timeline. But if they take like 5 days or more before they reply, is it even worth it to follow up? Do they even want this? Or better yet, can they still accommodate your tasks with their "busyness"? With this kind of lead-time, it surely spells a resounding NO.
Late in the Initial Call or Interview It's not all about their credentials. The person gets a foot in the door with stellar job completions. But if they are late in your initial interview, what does it say about them? Will they also be late in passing the required output? Will you have a hard time following up your requirements? Will you be buried with excuses with your working relationship with them? You should be wary.
No Sample Portfolio In hiring, you should at least get an idea if the person can do what you want them to do. I'm not saying you require them to do the whole job in their application. I'm saying at least get a grasp of their capabilities. At the very least, a snippet of what they can do. If they can't provide you with sample work related to what you require, better not be the guinea pig and look for someone else.
Not Receptive to Feedback There are multiple ways to finish a task. Every freelancer has his/her own workflow and creative input. But it doesn't mean that it’s infallible. I mean, they need to tailor fit the output with what you like because you are paying them anyway. This is assuming though that you understand their output (you hired for their expertise), and just want it tweaked in your liking. If there are signs that your prospective freelancer is not receptive to feedback, this inflexibility might have problems moving forward.
Increases Fees of the Project Without a Logical Reason After giving the project to your chosen freelancer, some might increase the fees because of a larger scope or a new estimate due to your additional requirements. But if they increased the fees without any logical reason and after giving out a very clear project brief, there should not be a glaring difference in prices. A red flag again. They might have not put enough time before spouting a price estimate. And this can only be done if they put the time and diligence to assess the requirements of your project.
Attitude Problems This is the most important thing to check. What's the use of their spotless record if you feel negative spots in their attitude? Do they have the enthusiasm to work with you? Are they arrogant and thinks they are up a pedestal? Yes, you need the best talents. But they should be able to adapt to your culture. You must remember, you are working WITH them. If they have flaws in their attitude that you can't tolerate, better look for someone (that may be less competent) but will fit your team just fine. These are just some of the red flags. Ultimately, follow your gut. Hire the ones who you think can help you. And I hope you flourish with them in your endeavors.