Many entrepreneurs and small business owners use the FreeeUp platform to grow their business by outsourcing tasks that either take up too much time, need specialized skills or that they simply don’t want to do. There are so many benefits of outsourcing when it comes to growing businesses that entrepreneurs are often curious about how the FreeeUp platform works. But many entrepreneurs also want to know what is behind the successful FreeeUp platform. How did it start? What gave the founders the idea?
Today we are bringing you answers to both. We have interviewed founders Nathan Hirsch and Connor Gillivan to get your burning questions answered regarding the FreeeUp platform.
1) What gave you the idea for the FreeeUp platform?
First, we wanted to know where the idea for the FreeeUp platform originated from.
The idea for starting the FreeeUp platform came out of our own frustrations of hiring online from other large freelance marketplaces, like Odesk, Upwork, and Fiverr. With our first eCommerce business, we spent years searching for the best freelance talent through these marketplaces and we were frustrated with the process…post a project description, get 10-20 applicants, interview who seemed to be the best, try to hire the best. We found that we had too much turnover and it was taking too much of our time as business owners. We wanted a better way.
2) Once you had the idea, how did you go about starting the platform?
A lot of entrepreneurs have great ideas so we were naturally curious what Nathan and Connor did once they had their idea. It isn’t enough to just have a great idea. You have to take action.
When we first started working on the idea of FreeeUp, we started by offering three options for eCommerce business owners. (1) eCommerce consulting (2) a Selling on Amazon course (3) the ability to hire pre-vetted freelancers. By offering the different services, we were able to get in front of a variety of clients, build trust with them, and then slowly offer them the idea of FreeeUp…to hire pre-vetted freelancers. Over the course of the first 6 months, we gained a loyal following of clients and hiring freelancers became the most popular service we were offering. It all took off from there.
3) What is the most valuable lesson you’ve learned along the way?
Every entrepreneur learns some lessons along the way. We were curious to hear what lessons were learned in the launching of the FreeeUp platform.
Always build a business based off a problem that many people in a specific market have. When we first started, we knew that we were having issues with hiring reliable and talented online professionals. We had to go through trial and error to figure out if others were having the same frustrations. When we discovered that there were hundreds of other people out there struggling as well, we were able to create a service that targeted those exact pains. When you can address a real pain point with a unique value proposition, you have the foundation for a strong business.
4) How important do you think outsourcing is for businesses looking to uplevel?
We wanted to know if it were possible to uplevel without outsourcing. If so, what are the benefits of outsourcing?
Outsourcing is of utmost importance for companies that want to level up and increase their growth. Long gone is the day of hiring full time employees and setting up an office. Sure, some companies still choose to do it, but you can be much more efficient with your time and money by hiring talented online professionals to complement the growth of your business. With the rapid growth of the gig economy, I predict we’ll see more and more companies, large and small, moving towards remote workforces.
5) How do you support the freelancers to make them want to stay?
The freelancers are a critical piece of the FreeeUp platform. Because they are the creme of the crop, we wanted to know what made FreeeUp a place they wanted to work.
We built FreeeUp with the goal of making the online hiring experience better for BOTH business owners and freelancers. On the freelance side, we attempt to provide a marketplace where they can set their own rates, work with clients that they find most interesting, and face less competition when seeking new clients. Freelancers know that when they use FreeeUp for building their freelancing business, they will be paid on time, introduced to high quality clients, and supported as they grow their business.
6) How do you support your clients who hire freelancers?
The FreeeUp platform couldn’t exist without clients. There must be great customer service … and we wanted to know what that looked like.
From the time that a new client signs up on the FreeeUp Marketplace, we have people in place to make sure their experience is flawless. The internal assistants recruit, interview, and vet hundreds of freelancers only allowing the top 1% of applicants into the network. As clients submit requests for talent, one of the assistants introduces them to a perfect match within one business day. And to ensure that clients are always happy with their experience, we have an around-the-clock client success assistants to answer questions and handle requests from clients. Everything that we do is for the betterment of the client’s hiring experience.
7) What is your best piece of advice to entrepreneurs looking to start or grow their businesses?
Budding and seasoned entrepreneurs alike always benefit from hearing advice from those who have made it big. We asked Nathan and Connor for their best piece of advice.
Find a product/service that addresses a real need. Test different markets until you find your ideal customer. Create systems and processes to automate the way that your business works. Then find talented professionals that complement your core skill sets so that you can stay focused on what you do best.
The founders of FreeeUp have learned a lot of lessons along their journey. They knew that outsourcing was critical to the growth of their businesses, but that a better solution was needed. That is how the idea for the Freeeup platform was born. Since the beginning, Nathan and Connor have made the platform perform better and be a seamless way for freelancers to find work and for businesses to find quality freelancers.
Homework: Now that you’ve read how the Freeeup platform was founded, how can you apply the key takeaways to your own business or business idea? How can you support your clients as well as the people who work for you? How can you use freelancers to help build your own business? Take a few moments to brainstorm. If you’d like to reach out to Nathan or Connor to discuss how freelancers might benefit your specific business, set up a phone call.
Melissa Ricker is a nuclear engineer and a professional freelance writer specializing in career growth, technical writing and online entrepreneurship. She writes a blog, Engineered Motherhood, for working mothers who need help balancing career growth and time management.