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Staffing: Hiring a freelancer vs. remote staffing company

One of the beauties of the internet and the technological advances we have today surrounds the idea of having unfiltered access to remote resources that were previously only accessible to the mega-corporations and governments. The “resources” I am referring to are highly-skilled workers that can deliver fantastic results and sometimes do not even need to be in the same country! 

Here are the Top 10 most sought after services for “skilled staff” you might need someday:

  1. Virtual Assistants/Administrative Support
  2. Sales Support/Digital Marketing
  3. Graphic Design/Video Editing
  4. Accounting/Bookkeeping
  5. Technical/IT Support
  6. Web or Software Development
  7. General Back Office Support
  8. Data Analyst/Encoding
  9. Medical Billing/Transcribing
  10. AutoCAD, BIM or Revit Engineering Drafts 

There are many more than two ways to access these resources, but we will only review the most popular—freelancer-based services with platforms like ODesk,, and Fiverr. The second, but less known, are Remote Staffing partners like Accenture, iQor, and companies like ours, ClarkStaff. The pros and cons list for both types are long and tedious. So instead, we are going to look at the bottom-line for both. 

Freelancers Bottom-line 

  • Cheap to hire and are willing to work on a quick project (avg. of $7/hr – a minimum of 20/hrs) 
  • Unreliable necessary communication skills, work hours, internet, tools, responsiveness, unpolished results, to name a few
  • But…Easy to find online! 

Staffing Partner Bottomline

  • Longer commitment period, but usually within a reasonable costing variance (avg. of $8/hr – a minimum of 160/hrs)
  • Ultra-reliable infrastructure, excellent talent pool, assistance with management and oversight, polished and audited results, to name a few
  • But…Not as easy to find a reliable company! 

The truth is the most substantial difference between the two types would have to be the mentality of the transactional vs. partnership relationship. Your business is likely your livelihood; so it’s fair to assume that your company has a vision, a culture, genuine care, and love for a mission statement fulfilled. Let me try to put this in simpler terms with a very realistic example. 

Imagine this; you are going to be making a big push in your finances/margins to help build more stability to recover from this COVID-19 pandemic. You made it through without going bankrupt, thank god, and you are on a tight budget, but you need to know where every penny goes and its effectiveness. Hiring a Finance guru locally, if you can even find one in your area, will cost you $4,500 a month, and he/she is going to want a long-term commitment. Budget restraints plus additional overhead makes this a no-go. 

  • Option #1 – A freelancer is going to cost you about $1,200 a month, but this person might be doing this in a cave somewhere on a mobile hot-spot with little to no oversight. Chances are they will not be completely useless but certainly increases the risk profile. Not the mention the potential data privacy breaches this could cause!
  • Option #2 – A Remote Staffing company will cost you about $1,300 a month or maybe even $1,500 for an experienced CPA. They require staff to work in a state of the art facility with a minimum Service Level Agreement, data security, and close oversight, which nearly guarantees success. Plus, you get a high-level Account Manager from America, Europe, or Australia who works hand in hand with you and the dedicated staff.

I am not sure about you, but logic tells me $100-$300 more a month, still being 70 per cent cheaper than hiring NYC, or wherever – which is out of budget anyway – is called a classic no-brainer decision. I am sure by now, you can feel my slight, teeny-tiny bias towards working with a partner instead of a freelancer. But honestly, with all jokes aside, I encourage everyone to go out and learn for themselves and find what works best for their company. That said, with over a decade working closely with companies and professionals from all over the planet, I have heard very few true-success stories when hiring freelancers.

So WHEN, not IF, hiring a freelancer does not work out, please do contact us; or heck, even one our competitors to find a partner that genuinely has a desire for that long term, your success is our success relationship. You will thank us later!

Russell Meiselman

President & Managing Partner

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