I have read thousands of job posts. Many are not adequate scripted to help the freelancer submit a proper bid. Let’s make up an example. Let’s say I want to hire a web page designer for my new business. I rush right out to my favorite freelancing website and post:
WEB DESIGNER FOR NEW BUSINESS NEEDED.
And that’s it. Now, I’m sure you’re thinking “oh, nobody does that.” Yes. Yes, they do. Quite often. This does not tell the web designers who might be interested ANYTHING about the job. Freelancers, (however awesome we might be!), are not mind readers. In order for us to properly bid on a project, we need to have as much information as possible. Here’s another example of a bad post:
NEED FIVE PAGE WEBSITE SET UP. ORIGINAL DESIGN. FLASH. INCORPORATE A STORE, VIDEOS, SOUND. $150 MAX.
Again, these posts happen, and happen frequently. Before you post, make sure you have a good idea of the general rate of pay a freelancer might make on your job. In the case of the example above, you would be insulting any good designer. I know you want to save money – but do not…. DO NOT save it at the expense of your business. The old adage “you get what you pay for” rings loud and clear when you’re dealing with freelancing. Don’t cheap out where your business is concerned. I have been hired to clean up after a “cheap” freelancer, in effect, costing the employer more money than if I had just been hired directly.
So, let’s get back to our example. I know I need a website, but I’m not website/techie savvy. My business is all about birdhouses. I can still post a good job description that will help me key in on the right freelancer.
NEW BUSINESS OWNER WANTS TO EXPAND TO THE INTERNET AND ISN’T SURE WHERE TO START. I HAVE OVER 500 PRODUCTS THAT I WOULD LIKE TO START SELLING ONLINE SO I WILL NEED A STORE SET UP. (CONSIDERING VOLUSION SOFTWARE, BUT WILL LISTEN TO YOUR RECOMMENDATIONS.) I ALSO WANT TO HAVE A BLOG ONSITE, A CONTACT PAGE, A FAQ PAGE, AND PERHAPS A SALES/CONTESTS/COUPON PAGE.
I NEED SOMEONE WITH EXCELLENT COMMUNICATION SKILLS (EASTERN TIME ZONE, PLEASE) IN ENGLISH WHO CAN LISTEN TO MY IDEAS AND MAKE THEM HAPPEN ONLINE. AN INTEREST IN BIRDS AND THE OUTDOORS IS GREAT, BUT NOT NECESSARY. LOCAL CANDIDATES TO TOLEDO WOULD BE GREAT SO WE COULD MEET UP TO DISCUSS, BUT AGAIN, NOT NECESSARY.
It’s not perfect, but it gives a designer a lot more to go on. If you aren’t technically savvy – let them know. If you are, then state exactly what kind of software or coding you are looking for. The more information you give, the better your return on candidates.
One more piece of information on the job post. Freelancing websites allow freelancers to ask you questions. Respond. Always respond. The more questions that are asked, the easier it is to give you a solid bid and timeline for completion.
Our last step will talk about your list of candidates – this is one step you won’t want to miss!