Hiring An IT Freelancer? Here’s How to Mitigate Your Risk

Taking the Risk Out of Hiring an IT Freelancer

As the founder of a medium-sized retail medical company, I’ve taken notice over the years as technology gurus bring the issues of website security and data protection to the surface. It’s vital that my customers conduct transactions on a secure website. A potential breach of our ecommerce site was a huge concern and an issue that we couldn’t ignore any longer as more incidents of compromised networks became common.

I decided I had to bring on an IT expert to analyze my site and identify and plug up any holes that might exist. Yet, I had no idea how to vet someone to ensure they had the qualifications to find the vulnerabilities in my system and secure my site. So I started upon a journey to find a high caliber IT person that would fit my budget and needs.

Looking for a remote professional can be a long journey

I started out hopeful in sourcing big freelance aggregators that seemed to provide a huge number of contractor options. I was optimistic when I posted a couple of jobs, but my hopefulness soon faded. The first red flag was the lack of transparency as to who would be doing the actual work. My selected IT service provider had headquarters in the US, but the actual programmers were based in India or Romania.

Hiring from a freelancer aggregator is often like buying a pig in a poke

This alone wasn’t a deal breaker but not knowing the name of the IT person, or knowing whether they had the right qualifications for my jobs, made me uneasy. Did they have the necessary expertise my projects need to be completed? Would they deliver quality work with the necessary protection for my company in today’s hacker-vulnerable cyber landscape?

What was most troubling to me was that I had no idea whether these techs would place as high a priority on due diligence as I myself would. I don’t have the knowledge myself to provide a high level of scrutiny when working with such contractors. I found myself taking a leap of faith to trust that I would be working with individuals who held a stringent standard of excellence. Needless to say, my quest to protect my business from any cyber vulnerabilities made me more uneasy than ever before.

We all wish to work with dedicated experts committed to excellence

After wasting far too much time fretting over the fact that I may have created more risk in the process of trying to mitigate my risk, I came across Speak With A Geek (SWAG). I soon discovered the benefits of working with an outsourced talent marketplace in which the IT pros were fully vetted through first- and third-party systems. The benefits of using this process are great:

  • Verified Up-to-Date Knowledge

    Verified Up-to-Date Expertise

    My concerns about real-time vulnerabilities made me especially careful about finding a contractor with up-to-date knowledge on security threats. SWAG made it incredibly easy for me to only search for candidates who had received recent training on security protocols, ensuring that my network and data would not be compromised.
  • One-to-One Communication

    One-to-One Communication

    Unlike other talent search sites, I was able to communicate personally with the tech working on my website. This personalized service was provided every step of the way. From the time we negotiated and signed the contract, through the evaluation and programming stage, all the way to invoicing and payment. I was more comfortable collaborating with a single individual than I was working with a larger shop.
  • Technology-Specific Expertise

    Technology-Specific Qualifications

    When posting by project, I was presented with specific questions to determine which technologies I currently used. With that information, I was able to refine my project and zero in on the professionals I needed based on differentiated certifications. This self-selection process, based on contractor certification, made it incredibly easy for me, a non-technical person, to know that I was working with the right professional.
  • Performance Goals

    Performance Goals

    Working with certified professionals meant that they were able to provide top-tier metrics, such as yearly performance goals and ongoing security check-ups. This gave me a greater degree of confidence in their work.

I wish I would have found SWAG sooner and saved myself the stress and worry! Now that I’m aware of this wonderful resource, there is no going back to my original research-heavy process. I can confidently tell my customers that their data is secure, giving us all the satisfaction of having peace of mind!

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