When we talk about why it’s advantageous for agencies to work with freelancers, we default to cost and internal bandwidth issues as the primary reasons. A larger freelance workforce means greater flexibility for management and that means money and time saved on the agency side. But those aren’t the only reason why you should always incorporate at least a few freelancers into your rotation. Here are three more reasons why you should consider adding them to your team and how to best manage them to make a positive impact on your team.
Updates, Updates, Updates
Technology has supplied many advantages for the modern creative agency. Unfortunately, it’s created a few disadvantages as well. It’s extremely difficult to ensure clients that you have top-notch talent in every new emerging technology, especially those that have frequent updates. Think about the Adobe suite. four years ago there was no cloud. There was no online collaboration tool. In fact, some of the more popular programs like Sketch weren’t even a serious tool back then. 3D animation? That was barely off the ground. Now think about the full-time creatives you hired four years ago. They are either behind the times or spend a substantial amount of time learning on the job. If they are supporting a large workload for your agency, taking the time to learn is often over-looked or near the back of their priority line.
Quality, handpicked freelancers work on a project-by-project basis and factor in the time they need in between projects to make sure they are up-to-date on the latest updates and trends. They also specialize in one technology and don’t need to be as versatile as your full-time team.
It’s a Project Based Business
Let’s face it – many of your clients today are asking for price quotes on a per project basis. Retainers are becoming less and less frequent, meaning it’s getting harder and harder for you to justify hiring more full-time employees for roles you might not need for several months out of the year.
Instead of dealing with a potentially idle full-time employee during down months, you can call in your elite freelancers when important projects arise. With platforms like Coworks, it’s easier than ever for project managers to assemble a team with all the right skills for a unique job.
Keeping Top-Tier Talent in-House is a Full-Time Job.
With platforms like LinkedIn, creative talent is now head-hunted just like top-level execs. Keeping them happy and in-house isn’t as easy as it used to be. Even with a generous benefits package and or equity, there is no guarantee they will stick around anymore. It takes constant time-consuming tweaks and perks to keep an in-house team from taking a peek at enticing offers from other agencies with more money. With freelancers, you don’t have to play the “can I keep my talent?” game. Instead, you just reach out when you need them.
Why is managing freelancers less-time consuming than dealing with my in-house talent issues?
Most agencies hesitate before hiring a freelancer because they aren’t sure how to balance them from a project management standpoint. It’s a legitimate challenge, but it’s not nearly as daunting as most people make it out to be. All you need is a quality Freelance Management System. With an FMS like Coworks, you can communicate, hire, share documents, set up meetings and develop long lasting relationships with freelancers that already understand your agency’s vision and style. Once you’ve established a steady roster of all-star talent, a Freelance Management System is like a Major League Baseball bullpen. When you need a new ace pitcher in the ballgame, all you have to do is look at your roster card, make a call down to the bullpen (or in this case a click of a mouse) and send them into the game to strike out the side. And if If you don’t like baseball analogies, just think on-demand talent with the ability to skip the headaches of back and forth communication, billing, file sharing, scheduling and more.