Problems When Hiring Online


A few years back, The Economist cited the hiring process as the biggest failing of businesses. What they hadn’t even looked into was online hiring.

Online workers bring with them so many benefits. You only need to use them when you need them, they don’t take up any office space, and – if you get the hiring process right – you can take your pick from the cream of the talent crop. Then, they get on with the work at hand. Happy days!

However, hiring in general is tough. And it gets even tougher when workers are remote. Scattered all over the world, they’re a lot harder to vet.

But check the stats: By 2020, it’s estimated that there will be more working Americans who are freelancers than those who still do regular office-based work. That’s just three years way. This means the time to start building an awesome online group is right now.

How do you find the top 1%?

Let’s take a look at the 5 biggest problems you’ll face when hiring online – as well as how to solve them.

No One Is Interested

So, you’ve listed your online project. You think both the ad and the project look awesome.

“Look at this ad – it looks amazing! Look at all the big words I used!”

However, no one is interested. What gives? It could be a few reasons.

Firstly, a problem a lot of businesses face is that they’re not always the best at writing out ads. Sometimes, they don’t even understand the project as well as they think they do. If you can’t get your ad right so that it speaks to the right person, you’ll find that everyone bypasses it.

Secondly, the fee you’ve set (which you have indicated that you are not flexible about) might be disproportionate to the amount of work someone will have to do. Take a look around to see what is a competitive fee for this project. If your fee is too low, you’ll struggle to get people onboard. Online workers aren’t desperate!

Not Finding Qualified Applicants

The trouble with hiring online is this: Where the heck do you look for qualified applicants? Maybe you’ve tried global freelancing platforms, such as Fiverr, but only average and inexperienced workers are applying to your projects.

True, these sites are stuffed with average-skilled workers. And true, the best online workers are harder to find. Maybe they’re so good that they already have enough work to keep them going for a whole year.

In this scenario, you need to make the effort to find them – as opposed to them finding you. Take the initiative and use social media platforms – especially LinkedIn and Facebook – and type in relevant keywords to find highly skilled online workers. It should only take a matter of minutes for the right results to pop up.

Then, send out a message to online workers that catch your eye and present your case.

Essentially, you may have to romance the best talent. But the great thing is that Google lets you find them.

Interviews Not Identifying Top Candidates

Wow. You put an ad out and got 50 applicants. Well done!

Actually, the numbers mean nada, unless there a few highly-skilled workers in there.

And then there is the interview stage. Do your interview techniques produce results?

Naturally, you can’t sit down with a candidate in the same room as you and have a detailed chat about the project, your company, what you expect from the candidate and what they expect from you.

Neither can you really get deep into a person’s character and understand what makes them tick.

However, you can improve the interview stage by having a one-on-one Skype call with a handful of talents that stood out in the application process. This is essentially a screening. It just needs to be a brief conversation during which you ask each candidate the same set of questions. Essentially, you’re looking to filter out the B and C players from the All-Stars.

Great Resume But Not A Cultural Fit

An online worker could have outstanding, mercurial talent. But it means nothing if they don’t buy into your company’s culture.

The thing is, unless you understand what your company’s culture is, you may end up making a bad hire.

Before you begin the hiring process, learn more about your own company culture. Ask current workers how they’d describe your culture using a few adjectives. Ask what values are important to you. Maybe you value communication more than anything else, or maybe a willingness to work around the clock to get things done is your biggest love.

Find out what your culture is. Then, frame your questions to the candidates so that you learn how well they fit into your culture.

New Hires Leaving Quickly

Online workers are sometimes referred to as digital nomads. A lot of the time, an online worker will give themselves this 21st century moniker. And when they do, it suggests a rootless worker who probably doesn’t like to stick around too long.

It’s so easy for an online worker to quit a project and find another one. It can be done in just a few hours. This is why it’s so important that you find a way to hold onto the best talent. It will certainly save you the hassle of having to re-hire all the time.

  • Pay online workers what you know is a fee that reflects their value – Top up their pay with bonuses when they go the extra mile.
  • Communicate with them regularly – This is so easy to do. You have emails, you have instant messaging. All it takes is a minute or so out of your day to check in on a freelancer. Don’t be The Invisible Client or you’re apt to attract The Invisible Worker!
  • Praise them – Praise is a powerful motivator. Don’t just focus on what someone did wrong. Highlight any awesome work they’ve done.
  • Pay them! – Online workers don’t mind going a couple of weeks without pay as long as they know you’re good for it. Clients who constantly make excuses not to pay will bite the dust before long.
  • Be Personable – Just because you have never met the freelancer in person, it doesn’t mean you can’t be personable with them. Offering advice on matters such as how to separate work life from home life will make them feel valued.

The Fix

To enhance your chances of making the right hire straight off the bat, FreeeUp is here to help. FreeeUp is home to top tier online workers in the fields of web development, digital marketing, virtual assistance and many other eCommerce-related tasks. Different from other platforms, FreeeUp interviews hundreds of freelancers each week and only allows the top 1% of applicants into the network.

How do we know they’re the 1%?

Each freelancer goes through a rigorous 4-step interview and testing process that only the All Stars pass. Freelancers offering their services through the FreeeUp marketplace are highly experienced, have a strong grasp of English, and love to communicate.

Essentially, this means that the vetting process is already for you.

It also means you don’t have to look through social media for your next hire.

All you need to do is take a few minutes to visit the site to sign up and submit a worker request. Someone will be in touch with you shortly to introduce you to matches and then you can do a quick interview to find out if the worker fits your company culture.

For more information, check our website. Your next awesome online hire is waiting to get started!


Michelle Deery Ecommerce Writer


Michelle Deery workes with Heroic Search in Tulsa. She specializes in writing about all things eCommerce including development, strategy and pricing.




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4 thoughts on “Top 5 Problems When Hiring Online (and how to solve them)

    1. Hey Robin, good question. We often faced the same problems, which is why we built FreeeUp. The freelancers on the marketplace are pre-vetted, and we work with you to get the right worker for your task.

  1. Turnover was my problem. It really pays to do some research into going rates so you can make a competitive offer for quality hires.

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