If you’re thinking about hiring a freelance worker, you are not alone. According to a recent study, there are close to 55 million freelancers in the U.S., and they now make up to 35% of the workforce. If the growth rate continues as expected, this number should hit 40% by 2020, so the odds are good you’ll be hiring your share of freelance workers in the near future. At 24 Seven Talent, we help companies and organizations find the perfect freelancers and direct hires. We know that every position and candidate is unique and that’s why we thought it would be helpful to go over both the pros of freelancing and direct hires so you can decide which will work best to fill your vacancies.
The major shift towards freelancing that we described above, has occurred for a number of reasons. For many, it is the desire for independence and flexibility. In fact, 47% of younger workers (18-24) are either full-time or part-time freelancers, so if you are planning to hire new graduates, you will most likely work with the freelance market in some capacity. This so-called “gig economy” has its benefits for those looking to fill a variety of digital marketing positions including content writing, copywriters, and web developers.
- Affordability – Right off the bat, you are not responsible for major overhead costs like office space, equipment, and in most cases, health insurance. In addition, you have access to lower cost talent in the global market.
- Flexibility – As much as the freelancer loves this pro, it can also benefit you as well. You are not locked into set schedules when it comes to assigning tasks, so things can get done more quickly.
- Specific Skills – If you need a very specific task completed — for instance, SEO or SEM work — hiring freelance experts is the best way to go. The task will be accomplished and you aren’t saddled with a one-dimensional fulltime employee.
While you might be set on hiring a freelancer in digital marketing, don’t forget there are still some major benefits to opting for a direct hire. In fact, some initial studies of upcoming Generation Z, show that they take a much more traditional view of work, so the trend toward freelancing may reverse itself in the near future. If you choose to go with a direct hire, there are certainly a number of benefits.
- Loyalty and Dedication – If you bring someone on as a direct hire, both parties are making a full-time commitment. The employee has indicated they are dedicated to your company and completing their work in close proximity and you will provide the stability of a workplace environment and benefits like vacations, healthcare options and other office perks. This leads to a much higher level of loyalty and dedication.
- Future Leaders – By making an investment in direct hires, you are also creating a pipeline of future leaders. These valued team members can not only help you accomplish critical tasks today, but with the right training and resources they just may be the source of your company’s future success.
Making the Choice Between Freelancers & Direct Hires
While there are benefits to both freelancers and direct hires, the most important take away from this comparison is that there is no set formula to making the choice. No matter the digital marketing position, you need to assess your needs, weigh all your options and then make sure you have access to the best workers. Sometimes a sound strategy is to use freelancers to keep projects moving forward while you search for the perfect full-time hire. Often times we have seen freelancers we’ve placed convert to the full-time employee – it’s a great way for both the employer and the talent to try each other out to make sure there’s a good match. Sometimes the best option is to include both full-time and freelance employees in your talent mix, check out how including both can benefit you. When you’re ready, contact the employment experts at 24 Seven Talent to help you find the perfect full-time or freelance employee for your company.