Finding the best online outsourcing providers is a big step towards financial freedom. By leveraging other people’s time to build your lifestyle business, you will be able to grow your business much more quickly and easily than otherwise possible.
Choosing the best online outsourcing platform can be quite confusing because there are quite a few to choose from; thus, we bring you our list of the 5 Best Online Outsourcing Providers to help you get either your career or business jumpstarted.
As inspired businesspeople, we all have ideas to make our businesses as profitable and as dynamic as possible. However, the time and skills needed to transform these great ideas into real business solutions is something that you might not have.
And unless you have the budget for it, taking on additional staff might be out out of the question for you.
Online outsourcing platforms provide a solution to that problem. Instead of spending extra time, money, and emotional energy trying to hire someone traditionally (you might need more than one person) who can do SEO or PPC campaigns, you can hire someone quickly and efficiently, and still get the quality work that you need.
Online outsourcing platforms give you the opportunity to post jobs, allow contractors to bid for them, and select the person that is best qualified to get the job done — you don’t even have to meet in person! So to help you do that here is our list of the 5 Best Online Outsourcing Providers.
The 5 Best Online Outsourcing Providers
Founded way back in 1999, before the days of social media — and many of the good things about the internet that we love and enjoy — Elance was one of the pioneering online outsourcing platforms. Now, Elance is the go-to site for millions of users working in different fields.
Here are some of the reasons why Elance is one of the best:
- On Elance, payment is guaranteed for both hourly and fixed-price contracts.
- You can track time and record hours spent at work with the Work View software for hourly paid jobs.
- For fixed-price jobs, Elance’s escrow service helps protect contractors by requiring clients to fund the project before setting any milestones.
- Elance filters out client who aren’t serious by charging $10 dollars as an activation fee (the amount is refunded upon confirmation).
- Great communication tools such as file sharing, version control, private messaging, and real time chat facilitate good working relationships.
On the other hand, there are these things to think about:
- To get the full benefits of the service, you need to pay for a better membership plan
- It is harder to find smaller projects
Elance is generally better for bigger projects. If you need top quality providers whom you are willing to pay top dollar for, you will find a lot of skilled individuals on this platform. Free membership is pretty good, but paid membership plans have lots of advantages. Plans start at $10 a month.
Check out this video and find out more.
Freelancer.com is an online outsourcing platform that is based in Sydney, Australia. To date, it has around 13,895,416 users and 6,822,195 projects posted.
Here are some of things that make Freelancer.com so popular.
- Aside from the traditional method of simply posting a job, you have the option to promote the project to make it more visible and attract more bidders.
- You can also post a contest with a cash prize and get people to submit entries so that you can choose the best one that you want.
- Results of exams that you take are displayed next to your job bids, thus highlighting your skills and qualifications.
On the other hand, there are a few potential disadvantages if you use this service:
- Unless you apply for paid membership, your opportunities are drastically limited.
- There are a lot of fees that you need to pay to get the full benefits of Freelancer.com
- Did we mention the additional fees?
Just like any other service, Freelancer.com has its own pros and cons. While there are providers and clients who have unflattering things to say about the service, there are also a lot who are satisfied with what the site has to offer. Membership plans start at $0.99 a month.
Watch this video and find out more.
A lot of people have lauded guru.com for having a much simpler user interface than other websites. Founded way back in 1999 like Elance, it is another one of the pioneers of the online outsourcing industry.
- They have a great escrow service called Safepay that protects both clients and freelancers.
- You also have the option to pay using Invoicing if you already trust the client/freelancer
- It is a great site to find US based freelancers
On the other hand::
- Unless you get paid membership, you won’t be able to get the full benefits of the website
- There are a ton of fees that you need to make use of their best services including Escrow Fee, Project Fee, Employer Payment Method Fees, and Fees you pay when you receive funds
If you are looking for US based providers Guru.com is a great option for you to choose, especially if you’re looking for someone to handle a fixed-price project.
Though you can settle for free membership, paid membership is better in so many ways.
Annual plans start at $8.85 and monthly plans start at $11.95.
You can view all of the membership plans by signing in to your account and going to the membership page. Find out more by checking out this video.
On average, 3 billion people commute to work every day; and we all know how much of a hassle that can be. Well, the folks at oDesk tells us that we don’t need to get caught up in that rat race anymore. You can work from your home, your favorite coffee shop, or even from the local park.
Here is why oDesk is a great online platform:
- Whether you are a client or a contractor, there are absolutely no membership fees. You can post as many projects as you want at no extra cost.
- There are absolutely no category restrictions: you can apply to any job that you want regardless of your rating or number of hours clocked.
- Rating system allows clients and contractors to objective feedback: you can’t see each other’s feedback until you give feedback yourself.
- The oDesk team app records proof of work and know what your freelancers in action, so you only pay for hours that the freelancer actually spent working.
Before you do anything, there are some things you ought to give some thought to:
- Compared to other services, the 10% oDesk fee can be quite steep.
- Because there is no built-in instant messenger, you will have to use external means of communication.
- There is no escrow service in place yet for fixed-price jobs (it’s being tested and will be available in January 2015).
With oDesk, work is no longer a place. Whether you’re in Antarctica or the Sahara, all you need to work is a good computer and a strong internet connection. Working no longer equals nine to five; you decide when, how, and where to work. Remember, no membership fees!
Find out more by watching their digital nomad video here.
Freelancer.com, gives you the opportunity to build great long term working relationships with some of the best employers and companies from all over the world, and say goodbye to the potential problems freelance workers face.
Take a look at some of the pros of Freelancer.com:
- Work for top companies from different countries including the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
- Because it is an open platform, you can find clients and contractors from other places such as Craigslist and Linkedin, and simply use Staff.com to track their time and handle payment.
- The Time Doctor software allows you to view screenshots from your staff members’ computer screens, see which websites and applications they are using, and track how much time they are actually spending on work.
- If you no longer require their services, you can let go of your staff members at any time.
- Membership is free for workers.
- Great customer service that even includes recruiter services if you pay the extra fee. Recruiters will help streamline the process and short-list applicants to meet your expectations.
- Payments are billed for the upcoming month, and if you let go of staff, you receive a credit for any days that you have already paid for but were not used.
- Payment is guaranteed at Staff.com. So, even if the client does not pay, you will still get payment.
Great right? Definitely. But here is some food for thought:
- You cannot get short-term contract work on Staff.com. It is only for long term work.
- The talent pool amounts to 158,942 according to the website. This can be a very small pool to choose from. Depending on the job, it can take a long time for you to find the right client and/or the right staff member, especially if you have very specific requirements.
- Unless you are working in the Philippines, the wire transfer fees is $25 per transaction.
The fact that Staff.com is only for long-term work, sets it apart from the other platforms. If you are looking for great staff members to have a long-term working relationship with, Staff.com is a great service to use. Membership begins at $49 a month.
So, Which One is the Best?
This list of the 5 Best Online Outsourcing Providers is not arranged according to rank. All of these websites come with their own pros and cons.
The website that best fits you depends upon your needs and the type of work that you do.
Obviously, the best ways to find out which one is the best is to try all of them yourself. Since you can usually try them for free, it shouldn’t be too hard.