Start Up Series #5: Outsourcing / Virtual Assistants for Startups

Startup Series | 0 comments | by Shaz Ide

There’s a lot of tasks you need to finish and time is not an ally. Worry not! You can outsource and get some help from a virtual assistant. Many people are unaware about what and how much they can outsource, or where to find reliable persons to help them deal with every day’s trivial tasks.

Finding the Best Virtual Assistants

Reality is, there are skilled contractors out there and then, there are those who will run your money to the ground. There are sites who have already pre-screened there virtual assistants who are simply ‘tried and tested’. The key to a successful outsourcing project is not only about finding the right people at the right place, but also making sure that they understand clearly what’s expected of them.

Luckily, there are plenty of options for the busy entrepreneur these days – from freelance websites, job boards and classifieds, to social media groups. Whether you’re looking for someone to help you manage your emails/schedules/phone calls, do some data entry or mining, bookkeeping or online research, write content for your blog, or keep your social media profiles updated – here are five places worth looking at:

 

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Upwork

With the power of Odesk and Elance combined comes the birth of Upwork, the world’s largest jobs and skills marketplace

Whether you are looking to hire experts A-Z or build your own team, having plenty of options to choose from in one of the most prominent freelance sites is something you don’t want to miss. This platform is built with success in mind, where each individual is verified and rated to make the hiring process less stressful.

About: Upwork is a trusted online workplace where clients and freelancers connect and collaborate on a global scale. The platform makes it possible for you to work with the world’s most talented independent professionals even if they are thousands of miles away.

Features:

  • Online jobs marketplace with advanced filters that help you search by skills, talent, rate, location, success score, keywords, expertise level
  • Automated billing and weekly work progress reports
  • Hire individual or team based-contractors
  • Hire on demand/per need basis
  • Hire by the hour or fixed rate
  • Active online community and customer supportWhat We Love:
  • Payment protection program
  • Dispute resolution
  • Upwork Pro – premium talent handpicked for clients
  • Enterprise Solutions – talent sourcing, technology platform, white-glove services
  • Free Sign UpPricing: Free Sign Up – starting June 2016, clients can choose to either pay a $25 flat fee/mo or a 2.75% transaction fee per payment

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Freelancer

Looking for project-based work? Freelancer is an easy-to-use and cost effective platform for small businesses.

If you’re posting small jobs and are looking for freelancers to help you with your work, this may be the right platform for you. All you have to do is post your project and receive competitive bids from freelancers on this site.

About: Freelancer is the world’s largest freelancing, outsourcing and crowdsourcing marketplace all rolled into one. Connect with freelancers in 247 countries, regions and territories. Hire talents from a wide range of skill set.

Features:

  • Freelancer Services marketplace
  • Freemarket Listings to buy or sell currently registered domain names
  • Freelancer app available on apple or android devices
  • Featured project listing
  • Escrow
  • Dispute resolution by arbitrationWhat We Love:
  • Ability to hire local freelancers
  • Ability to hold a contest
  • Project Showcase of successful work done
  • Free jobs and contests posting
  • Offers money-back guarantee for up to 30 days for contestsPricing: Starts at 3% of total project cost or $3 (whichever is higher)

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Project4Hire

Need to outsource work? Find a contractor within your budget and get the talent you need, when you need it.

Whether you’re looking for contractors or seeking to hire consultants, Project4Hire helps you find the right talent that suits your projects. This online jobs marketplace also comes with an optional work space for collaboration and project management.

About: Project4Hire is a freelance marketplace that connects hiring clients to freelance professionals and contractors all over the world. Clients can post jobs or project scope along with requirements, or the skills they are looking for. You can always find skilled freelancers worldwide.

Features:

  • Online freelancer portfolios
  • Job feeds and jobs categories
  • Featured job listing via Search Promotion
  • Safe Pay escrow serviceWhat We Love:
  • Advanced search function that lets you find professionals by keywords, feedback, category, hourly rate, hire range, rating, regions and specific skills
  • Simple and clean interface
    Pricing: Free sign-up; some additional features may come with a fee

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iFreelance

iFreelance is where you find freelancers to help plan, write, build and market your project all in one.

Tired of costly service or membership fees? iFreelance lets you hire freelance experts without the middleman. Employers can sign up and post their projects for free. It sits somewhere in between a jobs classified ads listing and a freelance marketplace.

About: iFreelance is a place for anyone who is outsourcing a job, or looking for one. It may be the easiest way to search for talented professionals around the world. Employers can post projects and contact freelancers directly – no commissions or service fees so they can spend your dollars on your projects instead.

Features:

  • Basic, Standard and Premium membership available for feature upgrades
  • Ability to feature a listing
  • Open communication channels
  • Simple user interfaceWhat We Love:
  • Supervised freelancer profiles and projects to avoid frauds
  • Fraud & Spam-Free
  • No advanced deposits or payments and commissions
  • Featured project listing
  • Lock in lower membership rates for 6 mos, 1-year or 2-year subscriptionPricing: Free sign-up for Employers Membership Upgrades: Basic $6.25/ Silver $9/ Gold $12

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Zirtual

Busy entrepreneurs all over the world choose Zirtual to hire smart, highly- trained Virtual Assistants from the US

Hiring college-educated, virtual assistants is a gem these days and busy startup owners may not have the luxury of time to do this. It would really be amazing if you can free up your time to focus on more important things so you can live the life of your dreams.

About: Zirtual makes sure that you get pre-screened and trained virtual assistants who you can trust. No HR? No problem. Their success team ensures that the VA you hire is the right fit so you don’t have to deal with downtime.

Features:

  • Dedicated U.S.-based college educated VA
  • VAs are available from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in your time zone
  • Direct contact via phone, SMS and EmailWhat We Love:
  • No monthly setup fee
  • Weekly task and hours reports
  • Complimentary branded company email
  • Client Success Team who will make sure your needs and the VA are a right fitPricing: Starts @ $398/mo for the Entrepreneur Plan

Want to Grow Your Business? Simple. Outsource!

Outsourcing is the biggest growth hack that your company can do, especially when you’re trying to get traction and establish your brand as one of the leaders in the industry. The biggest driver will always come down to cost savings.

For the same reason that we have designed Fourerr, a small gigs marketplace where you can find quality services that start at $4. If you’re a bootstrap startup, you can save a lot and have access to a diverse array of skills on a global scale. That’s definitely a major advantage!

  Let Us Help You in Finding the Right Outsourcing Assistant?

Want to read more? Check out our previous start up series post here.

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