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Enterprise project managers often build their teams from a combination of internal employees and outside contractors. In most cases, these outside contractors are employees of a business partner, vendor or other organization. In some cases, however, you may discover that you can’t find people with the right skill sets inside your organization or within any other company. The solution? Hire a freelancer.

While freelance work was once confined to a small group of specialized fields, more and more professionals are opting to work as freelancers today. Freelance work has much to offer, for both freelance workers and the organizations that contract with them. In fact, even project managers themselves have begun to provide their services on a freelance basis.

Outsourcing to a freelancer may sound like a difficult and confusing process, but it’s actually very simple. Dozens of websites have sprung up in recent years to act as marketplaces for freelance talent. The best freelance websites give you access to a large pool of talent, without charging exorbitant fees to you or your freelancers. If you need to add a freelancer to your next project team, these sites are a great place to start.


Craigslist is much more than a place to buy a used bike or sell your old coffee table. It’s actually one of the most popular websites for employers and job-seekers, including those looking for freelance work. One advantage Craigslist has over other sites is that you can deal with freelancers directly, rather than paying a fee or percentage to a third party. On the other hand, there’s nothing to prevent an unqualified candidate from responding to your post, so be sure that you screen your candidates and get references before making a hire. Posting a job description on Craigslist is free in some geographic areas, and in other areas the site charges a small fee per post.


Upwork, formed from the merger of Elance and oDesk (two of the most popular freelance websites), has millions of registered freelancers in a wide variety of fields. When you offer a freelance position through Upwork, you use the site to arrange interviews, conduct skill tests (if needed) and make payments to your freelancers. The site makes money by taking a percentage of each freelancer’s billing, as well as a payment processing fee for clients that hire freelancers.


Freelancer, another of the largest freelance websites, gives freelancers the chance to make competitive bids on job postings. Like Upwork, Freelancer charges a percentage of the amounts billed by its freelance users. If you are looking for a software developer, graphic designer, copywriter or media specialist, you’ll find thousands of candidates ready to bid on the job. Millions of businesses use Freelancer to turn their ideas into reality- will yours be next?


If you’re looking to save some cash, give bistara a try. College students make up their database of freelancers and, if you’ve ever worked with a college student before, their rates tend to be much lower than others with much more experience. Of course, you’ll have to take their lack of experience into consideration. With over 600 freelancers from 96 colleges throughout the country, perhaps you’ll find a qualified freelancer at your alma mater. Plus, their cash-free payment system ensures that the freelancer will only be paid when both parties agree that the project has been completed.


With LinkedIn ProFinder, you can easily take your project from to-do to done. The process is simple: answer a couple questions about the services you’re looking for, receive up to five offers from professionals who are ready to help, and select the right person based on their experience and portfolio. From design and administrative work to writing and editing, LinkedIn ProFinder vets the experts for you so you’ll be viewing only the most qualified professionals for the job.


Catered specifically to employers seeking help with IT and tech, Dice allows you to access millions of skilled tech candidates without the unqualified clutter. Dice’s next-generation service goes beyond the resume to the open web, and will bring you top tech candidates from around the globe. Whether you want to be more efficient or broaden your reach, Dice provides employers with the unique ability to filter and target talent as they see fit. And, with companies like Dell, eBay, Cisco, and HP using Dice, you’ll be in good company.


Concerned about how you’ll be able to manage an in-house team and a group of freelancers? Read our tips for prioritizing projects across teams, and check out some of Clarizen’s customers in action