Hiring Upwork freelancers is one of the best business decisions you can make if you know how to do it quickly and effectively. The automated hiring process makes it easy to search for and find what you need for your remote team. But as with anything done for the first time, it is understandable to have many unknowns before you start and that you want to avoid as many risks as possible.
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Master Freelance Platforms
It is not simple to find top talent or simply a person that will do a job well, do it fast, and do it better than everyone else. The choice of freelance platforms and talent marketplaces is overwhelming.
Almost 30 million employees, in the U.S. only, have ventured into freelance in the last five years and created profiles to showcase skils, look for better job opportunities, and get in touch with clients that are looking for their expertise specifically. And as with any marketplace, the quality of the provided services is various, sometimes questionable.
But if you take the necessary precaution and apply the tips we will share, you will see that Upwork is not the recruitment Leviathan many believe it to be.
You can not only connect with quality employees on Upwork but take the process a step further and use your new hiring skills to grow your business by flexibly and gradually expanding or shrinking your remote workforce.
Such a maneuvering scope is essential in the uncertainty of the gig economy. So, where do you start?
How to Find Top Talent: Look for Experienced Upwork Freelancers
The process of creating an account and starting hiring on Upwork is pretty straightforward. There are occasional changes, which are mostly technical and structural. But you need to acquaint yourself with their Terms and Conditions, just in case, so that you don’t skip a major important step or break the rules. Local regulations for hiring freelancers may vary so it’s recommended that you take a look into them depending on your location.
It takes several minutes to create a client account, set up a payment method, and explore the freelancer marketplace.
It is important to make a difference between the basic Upwork account which is free, and the business and Upwork enterprise accounts, which require paid subscriptions with extra perks such as reporting, help with onboarding, project management, and work protection.
However, you can get quotes from expert Upwork freelancers even without paying for the service.
The Art of Posting a Job on Upwork
Upwork is one of the best freelance platforms because it simplifies and shortens the hiring process. The process is intuitive but there are crucial components you need to pay attention to, such as:
- Creating a representative job description
- Verifying freelancer identity, and
- Selecting the best candidate from all proposals.
The first step is to create a job posting.
To post a job, you need to explain what your project is about and write a job description. Don’t just skim through this section.
The best Upwork freelancers know how to recognize a great client. A great client is serious, which means they don’t want to waste time on flaky job descriptions that prolong the recruitment process. Simply put, they know what they want and clearly state it in their job post. Use this space to explain what you need and shortlist candidates by asking relevant questions.
Upwork Interviews for Freelancers
Upwork has a set of readymade questions you can use but you can always make your own.
One great question you can ask without taking much of your time is: “Please describe or explain the process you will use to complete the job.”
It looks like a basic question, but from it, you can find out additional details about how the freelancer thinks and approaches their jobs so that you manage expectations on time.
This is a vitally important step in the hiring process. Therefore, get as clear on the project requirements upfront. You will get a list of quality quotes and proposals that’s proportionate to your efforts.
Job Description Clarity
A good job description that elaborates what you need in detail will connect you with the right freelancers. You don’t need to be overly specific as sometimes you won’t be able to, simply because you are not an expert for the job you are posting.
The right freelancers will match you with the answers and clarify some of the unknowns you have been wondering about. Those are the freelancers that you will most probably hire in the end.
Upwork Freelancer Identity Verification
You cannot undertake the role of a government agency and check profiles. But you can verify that the person that has posted a profile has some sort of a backup for the claims on their stellar profile.
For starters, use client feedback or testimonials from previously completed projects. Feedback serves a double purpose:
- To learn more about the project
- To learn more about the person you will potentially be working with
That’s one way to assure the credibility of the freelancer. Additionally, search the freelancer portfolio to look for similar projects, as well as other freelance platforms or social media accounts. Since you can do all this from the freelancer’s profile, it pays off as it can be done quickly.
Arrange a video call to chat with the freelancer. And don’t forget that Upwork has a pre-verification process for every profile, which ensures that the persons applying to work as Upwork freelancers are genuine by identity and skills. If you want to protect your work, aks for an NDA agreement prior to starting work.
For more tips about browsing and selecting freelancer profiles, check this video:
Candidate Selection: How to Search Freelancer Profiles and Proposals
Once you have posted the job description, you will get qualified proposals with project descriptions, quotes, and timelines.
Both too many or too few proposals means that you may have missed an important step in the job posting.
Weed out profiles by checking the attached skillset, which is visible on the profile. Upwork data-science-based algorithms are getting better at this by identifying the most sought skills on the market and creating relevant boxes to be used by clients.
Moreover, the job description stage would have completed a part of the skill verification and weeding the best profiles.
The next thing you can do is set a paid test job. This can be a small project part or task that will help you see the quality of the work.
Finally, make yourself available for the freelancer to improve collaboration and answer questions that they may have. One way to do this is to include the “Do you have any questions about the job description?” in the job posting.
In a way, finding expert Upwork freelancers is like using the agile methodology. You do two or three iterations of the hiring process and collect insights that serve as feedback in order to truly select top, best-matching talent from one of the busiest global talent marketplaces.
How to Scale Your Business with Upwork Talent
Once you become confident in this process, you can use your client skills to manage employee resources. You can hire people in just one day, sometimes even in a matter of hours, but also find employees for long-term contracts similar to conventional employment. That’s the core beauty of using Upwork freelancers and other freelance platforms. Upwork client fees are applicable as a fraction of the completed and paid work so the hiring process via the standard account is virtually cost-free.
Human capital is the trickiest to manage but you can guard your resources and take reasonable risks by creating on-demand remote teams.
The already established hiring process by Upwork, strengthened by the flash team structure we use at Flash Hub will cement your efforts for flexible workforce management.
Even in the direst of circumstances, such as a major team canceling their services, freelancers can save the day.
Learn to grow and scale your business with virtual teams and global freelancers with our FREE Virtual Team Starter Pack!