Business Link’s “11 point checklist to get the best from a freelancer”

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Professional contractors are used by businesses that outsource work on a freelance basis. While the type of work they carry out varies enormously, there are some fundamental principles which underpin all successful freelance engagements. Here is a summary of the key action points.

1. Has a signed contract been received from the freelancer or agency?

Ensure the engagement is agreed in writing with a ‘contract for services’ or a purchase order for smaller projects.

2. Have Terms of Reference been agreed with the freelancer?

Agree the objectives, deliverables, timescales, budget, reporting structure and how the deliverables will be evaluated. These should be recorded in writing as a statement of work to accompany the contract.

3. Have confidentiality issues been covered?

If the freelancer is likely to be privy to confidential or commercially sensitive information, ensure they sign a non-disclosure agreement.

4. Has a billing process been set up?

Ensure procedures are in place for authorising timesheets or signing off invoices.

5. Is working onsite necessary, where are they going to sit?

Ensure there is a workstation for the freelancer, that appropriate site security and parking advice is issued and that they know who to ask for on arrival.

6. What resources have you agreed to provide? Are they ready?

Ensure any required information or equipment is available and access to any required systems and networks is in place.

7. Are there any issues with connecting the freelancer’s own equipment to your systems?

Ensure the freelancer is aware of technical requirements/restrictions when connecting their equipment to your network (eg security, PAT testing etc).

8. Have you provided relevant information on company policies?

Ensure the freelancer is aware of any relevant security and/or specific health and safety policies.

9. Have project review points been scheduled?

Agree a regular communication schedule to review project milestones. Diarise provisional dates for periodic meetings involving key parties.

10. Have you provided relevant information regarding company procedures?

Provide access to internal standards, procedures and documentation (eg company guidelines, document templates etc).

11. Has the wider team been briefed?

Ensure colleagues are aware of the freelancer’s role in the project and that relevant team members are expecting contact from the freelancer. Make sure a list of key contacts is available to the freelancer.

Source: Business Link’s “11 point checklist to get the best from a freelancer