How to hire a freelancer for my startup?

Most entrepreneurs or small business owners turn to freelancers instead of full-time employees, reason being much lower expense, less on-boarding time and fast turnaround. Here are some commonly asked questions online.

1. How to test their skills & capabilities?

Honestly it’s really not easy for someone that’s not tech savvy to tell if a freelancer is performing above the mark or under, you can’t manage sales people unless you did sales before yourself right?

The best method is to hire 2 freelancer at different price point and give them the exact same task to work on (obviously something small like change the slider on homepage), say one at $20/hr and one at $40/hr. This simple experiment’s result will be pretty shocking I promised because I try this experiment everytime I’m hiring a freelancer (personally hired more than 100 freelancers in the past 4 years). I tend to find the higher tier freelancer get the job done faster, ask thorough questions before they start the task, and very good at communicating in non-technical terms 🙂

On the other hand, the lower tier freelancer was not as efficient and resourceful but they still get the job done. Obviously the code quality depends on the individual freelancer but in average the more you pay the better you get. Trying to buy a BMW with the budget of a Honda is just outrageous?

2. How to secure my idea?

Well you can’t and you shouldn’t. I think Eric Ries (Author of Lean Startup, a great book) used to say, if an idea is that great then you want to spread it out to as many people as possible instead of keeping it from everyone – makes a lot of sense to me if you just think about how many startups struggle to get their product/idea out there.

However NDA (Non Disclosure Agreement) or Mutual NDA will help a bit on this matter that makes you feel more secure. Even tho it doesn’t really give full protection to your idea at all, feel free to consult a lawyer in this regards.

3. How much should I pay?

Always ask for TIMELINE for every single task you gave to freelancer. The hourly billing method from was designed this way so you get to say NO to freelancer if one task takes them too long to do.

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