Using Freelancers To Grow Your Agency

Freelancers are used widely in the digital industry and prove to be a great tool for businesses who need an expert to complete a task without having to hire a full-time employee to undertake the responsibility. However, there are a lot of digital freelancers claiming to be experts at their field and it is essential that you choose the rights ones to help your business. This part of our Digital Marketing Recruitment Guide continues looking at agency roles and specifically the role of freelancers within your digital business.

Scott Dylan has been involved in the digital industry for a number of years and is currently Global Marketing Director at an international music firm. In this section, Scott writes about the benefits of using freelancers to grow a digital agency but also how to approach the recruitment process. Digital freelancers can be a great cost-effective solution to a number of short-term tasks that need doing but do not warrant a salaried employee.

As digital marketing agencies grow and expand, the obvious next step is to take on more work and cultivate relationships with a larger number of clients. But with growth in business opportunities, it is often pertinent to look at how staff will be able to meet the extra workload.

Do you have enough people on the payroll to tackle the amount of work that is expected to come in?

This is where freelance workers come in. Independent contractors offer their services without having to be inducted onto the payroll; the business pays them individually to carry out an agreed service, and they are not considered full-time members of the team. This can have a multitude of benefits for those running a digital agency.

Freelancers are often flexible due to having no specific working hours or location; they can be called into the office to work; they can complete work from a remote location or they can combine the two to create an effective working relationship with the company they are carrying out a service for. In general, freelancers are also experts in their field; someone who offers their professional services to a number of complex businesses must be able to say they are a fully-fledged expert in their chosen industry, whether it is web design, computer programming, creative content or marketing.

Freelance workers are incredibly useful to any agency for a multitude of reasons. They offer professional services that might not be viable within the existing workforce, and they can work flexibly to suit the business' needs. Their temporary state of employment also means that businesses can generally afford to pay out a much higher price for the service, as it is an outlay which won't be sustained over a long period.

Paying £600 per day for a web developer who will work intensively on a job for a week and get it done quickly is more cost-effective than taking on a full-time web developer for the foreseeable future and paying them a salary.

The prices are one thing which varies between freelancers, and different professions will demand different fees. The prices and service levels are also largely dependent on experience. The digital sphere has only been in use as a marketing tool for a limited time, so freelancers will only be able to boast an absolute maximum of 20 years' experience, but examples of their previous work, their qualifications and their prices will offer a clear view of their capability to tackle a job.

Freelancers can help to grow any agency and, if they are sourced well, many agencies strike up lasting working relationships with freelancers, which can prove incredibly useful. The talent pool in freelance is outstanding, and the agencies who are not dipping into it when they need professional help or an extra service are often missing out on some of the most cost-effective and high quality work they will receive.