Most of today’s organizations work with freelancers. It saves them money, improves work quality, and brings diversity to their workflow.
Hiring a freelancer is an effective way for companies to bring a positive work culture to their organization. But establishing collaboration between in-house employees and freelancers is a complex job.
Freelancers and full-time employees work in different ways. Freelancers only have to work on tasks assigned to them. They work on a flexible schedule without micromanagement.
In-house employees are responsible for coordinating with freelancers within set boundaries to ensure that the work is completed on time.
Since freelancers and in-house employees work under separate situations, it is a perfect recipe for miscommunication and team conflicts.
Let’s learn strategies to boost collaboration between employees and freelancers.
Why Collaboration is Important
Team collaboration is the company culture’s foundation. Building trust requires that all company team members, whether they work in-house, remotely, or as freelancers, work together.
It entails a smooth workflow and elevated employee performance. Apart from that, the employee-freelancer collaboration helps the organization with the following aspects:
Collaborative working is made possible through various digital tools like collaborative platforms, instant messages, and video-conferencing. According to recent data on employee engagement, 92% of executives agreed that employees who are engaged always do a better job.
These tools save time and engage team members in their work. For example, time tracking software helps managers to assign equal work and track the performance of everyone working in the team.
Better career development opportunities
Collaborative teamwork encourages people with diverse backgrounds and experiences to assist one another. Everyone can contribute their knowledge, talents, and skills to the group. They also propose new ideas to help solve complex problems.
Collaboration helps your career grow because it is based on sharing and exchanging ideas, which leads to learning new skills. Also, it helps build the employer brand because it shows that your company is a place where people can grow.
Positive workplace environment
Employees and freelancers will become acquainted with one another while working together. They can build a personal bond and trust to help each other.
It enables them to connect, strengthen their relationships, and appreciate each other’s work. The workplace environment is strengthened in this environment.
6 Tips to Improve Your Employees and Freelancers Coordination
Your team’s productivity, performance, and engagement depend upon employee and freelancer collaboration. Here are a few tips to help your team.
1. Give your freelancers the right tools
Setting up an asynchronous communication helps to liberate your freelancers to work independently without waiting for employees to do their job.
Give them time to work, help them plan their schedule, and use your project management software to keep track of their tasks.
Apart from communication and project management software, you can provide other team collaboration tools to help your freelancers and employees work seamlessly. Somel team collaboration software include:
- Video conferencing
- Scheduling software
- Time tracking
- Automatic attendance recording
2. Schedule meetings
No matter how robust your remote management solutions are, setting up meetings between your employees and freelancers regularly, at least once a week, is essential. Discuss what has been accomplished and what needs to be done before the next workweek.
The more your employees engage with freelancers during these meetings, the better they can work together. If they have any questions or concerns, they can be addressed during the meeting.
You can also use these weekly meetings to praise your staff or freelancers for a job well done. Everyone enjoys hearing when they do something right.
3. Define communication guidelines and expectations
It’s important to set clear goals for your team for better collaboration. Without clear guidelines and expectations, projects can take longer to complete or, worse, fall short of objectives.
It applies to written communication, such as email and instant messaging, as well as phone calls and in-person meetings.
Remember to be adaptable as well. If there’s a problem with your rules and expectations that needs to be fixed, be willing to talk to your employees or freelancers about it. Allow for the possibility that something will go differently than planned.
4. Trust your team
Accept that your teammates are not robots but rather individuals. Consider the experiences, strengths, weaknesses, and other skills of your employees and freelancers.
Don’t focus on finding flaws in your team workflow. Instead, help your employees and freelancers to improve their efficiency.
To avoid micromanaging, rely on their ability to do the job well. It can free up time for you to focus on higher-level tasks like planning and prioritizing.
5. Provide appropriate and timely feedback
Give appropriate feedback to your employees and freelancers. For example, to increase their productivity, provide constructive feedback to your team members, such as what they are doing right and wrong, so that they can improve.
If you want to boost morale and productivity, you must recognize and praise good performance while giving feedback on areas for improvement. But never sugarcoat things—give honest and straightforward feedback to your employees and freelancers.
6. Appreciate your employees and freelancers
A little praise can go a long way. It can be done in person or online, as long as you show appreciation regularly. You should also think about rewarding employees and freelancers who achieve personal goals.
These incentives can be inexpensive and worth it in the long run. Consider what your team members want and provide it as a reward when they reach their objectives.
Foster Collaboration on Your Team
Collaboration between your employees and freelancers increases the productivity of your team. So, if you plan to keep freelancers and employees in your organization, you’ll want to build an environment where they can share knowledge together. That way, your team can achieve goals faster.
About the Author
Ankur Manchanda is the co-founder and CEO of GreenThumbs. He is an HRTech enthusiast and a passionate entrepreneur. By education, Ankur is a chartered accountant. In addition to running his company, he is an avid reader and knowledge sponge. Follow him on LinkedIn.