For many organizations, the question of whether to hire a freelancer is driven by organizational necessity. As projects ebb and flow, you’ll probably encounter a situation when you need additional hands on deck — to add support to your team’s existing operations. You may ask your HR team for guidance — perhaps, to open a job req for a permanent hire — and they may tell you “no” for the following reasons: there’s no budget, no long-term need, and no business justification to bringing another employee on board. You and your team may decide that your next best option is to venture out and hire a freelancer.
You may be at a position within your organization where there is no immediate use case for a freelancer. Perhaps you have a full-fledged creative team with a strong portfolio of writers, marketers, designers, illustrators. Being fully staffed, however, does not necessarily mean that the freelance ecosystem is irrelevant to your business. You may be able to find some creative use cases for hiring freelancers that directly enhance your operations. Here are 7 less-than-obvious reasons use cases to guide you:
1. When you need to get something done, really fast
When you’re working on a new product release — or you’re looking to launch a blogging program at scale, you’ll generally organize an ‘all-hands-on deck’ effort for your organization. The problem with ‘fast,’ however, is that it’s rarely fast enough. That’s where freelance talent comes in, to quickly and cost effectively supplement your team’s efforts when everybody is super busy trying to get something out the door.
2. When you need a fresh perspective
Freelancers are your business’s eyes and ears into the greater marketplace. While your team might be limited to the context of your own organizations, freelancers live and die by their ability to cast their net wide. Top freelancers, in addition to helping you execute projects, will bring additional expertise and educational opportunities to your organization.
3. When you need a subject matter expert
Creative disciplines are filled with experts. You may have a team member who’s great at creating B2B content and infographics for instance, but who may not be the right fit for a consumer-facing project. A cost effective and impactful alternative to bringing on an additional team member would be to hire a freelancer. This type of subject matter expert will help free your team’s time so that you can focus on the areas in which you already excel — all the while, expanding your capabilities to ‘rock’ new initiatives.
4. When you’re running an experiment or launching an MVP
Companies rely on experiments and tests to venture into new areas and move initiatives forward. What’s challenging, however, is your team’s ability to commit existing resources towards anything other than the status quo. If you’re running an experiment or testing a new product, you can consider hiring a team of freelancers to avoid diverting your team’s attention away from the everyday.
5. When you meet someone awesome
Every so often, you’ll come across a consultant who is awesome, cares about your brand, and wants to add value to your organization. While you may want to hire this person full-time, it may not be possible (after all, this person has chosen to become a freelancer). An alternative would be to work with this person on a contract basis. He or she can still add value and be a core part of your team, outside of a traditional employment relationship. There’s no need to let an awesome person pass you by.
6. When you need a project done on-demand
Companies need to be careful about how they’re managing resources — especially when it comes to top talent in areas of design, engineering, UX, and content. If you need to get something done quickly, you can’t necessarily afford to wait your ‘turn’ in a long queue. Instead, tap into the freelance economy to find someone awesome on-demand.
7. When you need to focus on your core skills
Long story short: you’re better at certain things than you are at others. The more time you chase your weaknesses, the less empowered you will be to make the most out of what you already have and bring to the table. Freelancers can help you focus on your strengths — because they’re good at what you are not. Delegation will allow you to amplify your results.