There are a variety of tools that make this easier. One I recommend is Hootsuite, which will allow you to prepare social media updates in advance.
A more unique option is Edgar, which lets you schedule posts that continue even after your list of updates to send is empty by cycling through a library of content.
And finally, Buffer allows you to set up a queue of posts that you want to share on a variety of social media channels.
These tools allow you to work asynchronously with the time constraints you have. In other words, you can put in a set block of time and reap the results at other times later.
By batching these tasks, you may be able to reap the benefits without hiring a new employee.
Finally, you can work asynchronously on email as well. Using a tool like ContactMonkey, you can easily schedule emails to delay and send later.
This allows you to send new leads emails throughout the week without needing to schedule them each day.
But software has its limitations, and you may find that you need to outsource your tasks to humans to do more advanced work.
Here’s where to start:
Outsourcing Business Systems
Sometimes there are processes and systems your business needs that you simply shouldn’t handle on your own.
For example, every business needs to file taxes every year. But most small businesses choose to outsource this to an accounting firm or CPA.
Because this kind of specialized tax know-how is something a small business only needs a few times a year!
It’s much cheaper to hire out that part of the business rather than hiring a new employee who doesn’t have enough to do most of the year.
How to Decide Who to Use for Outsourcing Your Business Systems
For each of these, I recommend looking into an established firm.
The level of expertise for each of these areas is important and may even have legal requirements, so it’s important to choose a company you trust.
For these areas, you should not browse freelancers online. Instead, look carefully for a firm that meets your needs.
Depending on your situation, consider the following criterion.
Local: If you’re a local business in need of constant communication, you should look for a company in the area. This is also applicable if you will need the firm to be physically present, whether it’s for setting up a new IT system or scanning last year’s tax documents.
Expertise: Sometimes, your industry is so specialized, you need a firm that serves your specific needs. Companies that work with a niche, like HR management for tech startups, will be able to understand your unique needs best.
Experience: This is a must for any company that deals with important information, like taxes or legal paperwork. Whatever firm you decide to use, look for a company that knows what they’re doing and has references and data to support their claims.
Finance & Accounting
The most common example of business outsourcing is finance and accounting, or F&A.
The problem isn’t just in the amount of time an in-house team has to dedicate to the work.
Larger accounting firms can afford software and resources that in-house employees will never have access to.
His work history tells me that he’s spent over 500 hours on Upwork with 76 jobs, which is a good amount to have a process and track record for solid work.
And finally, he’s fluent in English. This makes the communication process much easier, and he’ll understand any revisions I need to make.
If you want to dive deeper into customer feedback, you can review the Work History and Feedback section of the freelancer.
I prefer to sort by lowest rated, to see what issues (if any) are common complaints.
Since most freelancers offer revisions, you shouldn’t see many negative reviews. A slew of negative feedback usually means the freelancer wasn’t very accommodating to clients.
Thankfully, Goran J. has excellent feedback. The lowest rating he’s received was “no feedback given,” and the lowest recorded score was 4.30.
He’s a solid candidate based on previous experience.
Now that we know he’s qualified for the job, let’s make sure his work quality matches what clients have said.
Most freelancers on Upwork include a portfolio where you can review previous work.
Unlike a low Job Success Score or poor customer feedback, there’s no right or wrong answer with a portfolio.
You’re just making sure you like their style.
If you follow these steps to vetting the freelancers who apply for your job postings, you’re sure to get a killer job done each time.
How to Make Ongoing Outsourcing Projects Successful
When you first venture into the world of outsourcing, you might hear horror stories of ongoing freelancers who rack up massive bills, deliver work long past deadlines, or give up on a project halfway through.
This is easy to prevent for a quick foray into freelancing with a small task.
But what if you have a larger, ongoing project? How can you ensure quality work while still maintaining a fair price?
The answer is just as simple as landing a quality freelancer for a small project: there are a few key steps to ensure a perfect fit.
Invest More in the Outsourcing Selection Process
Since you’ll be working with someone for a longer period of time, it’s important that they are a good fit for your projects.
To do this, you’ll want to set up a more rigorous process for finding the right freelancers.
I recommend adding a random test question to your application to weed out anyone who won’t follow directions.
Requiring a unique subject line or another kind of “password” is a simple way to see who is willing to pay attention to small requests.
To get the right person, you also need to expand your entries. Have at least three people in your sights, then choose the one that works best for your project.
I recommend requiring a paid test project from at least three people. Yes, it can be expensive to pay multiple people for the same work, but think of it as an investment.
It’s better to find out early on that they aren’t able to handle a project before entrusting them with mission-critical work.
Finally, conduct a video chat interview with your shortlisted candidates. This ensures they can show up to an appointment and make sure you get along.