At times, hiring a freelancer is more beneficial than hiring an in-house employee.

What are your plans for 2018 to cut costs? One of the top ways to reduce the cost of hiring full-time employees is to hire a freelancer. Freelancers can work in-house or at home, which reduces the expense of paying an employee vacation, benefits, and sick pay.

An entrepreneur can be hesitant about hiring a person that works from home because they cannot be micromanaged. However, professional freelancers can work at their own pace and deliver high-quality work at a faster speed. Some may even have connections to media, work with social influencers, and could be in tune with your industry.

Here are a few helpful ways to connect with professionals online before you begin the hiring process.

Freelancers on Online Portals

There are websites that take job postings, review portfolios, and create a shortlist of applicants. If you are a small business or a startup with minimal resources, you can act as the HR specialist by conducting the interview online. Depending on the website you select, a points system on a freelancer’s profile is calculated based on the feedback previous clients provided after the completion of work.

A few examples of websites include Freelancemyway.com, Freelancer, and Guru. Think of them like Facebook for companies and freelancers.

Test Before You Hire

You can request a candidate to complete a test before you decide to hire to test their skills. In some cases, companies will pay the candidates selected in a short list for their time to complete a test.

Another idea is to have the freelancer sign a short-term contract for a few months to determine with time if it is a good fit for your company. This will serve as a probationary period where you will be able to see if the freelancer can follow instructions and produce high quality work.

Freelancers have Connections

The cost of hiring a public relations and marketing team to promote a business can be expensive. A freelancer with connections to media outlets can work with you at a fraction of the cost. The social influencer you were unable to reach for co-marketing efforts can turn into a business relationship with the help of an independent writer or journalist.

Freelancers that Work on Holidays

The time when employees take time off for holidays, some freelancers use this time to complete assignments. Many freelancers are not accustomed to the PTO holiday schedule and can be open to working on days that some firms have off. If you have a last-minute project that needs to be completed and the office is closed, contact a freelancer.

Freelancers will Stay Onboard

According to The Balance, “[t]he median tenure for workers age 25 to 34 is 3.2 years.” In some cases, employees are in between jobs up to 12 months searching for more pay and job satisfaction. Hiring a freelancer with the option to become a full-time employee is appealing to a lot of workers in this age bracket because you get to form a working relationship.

If you pay a freelance accordingly and nurture that business relationship, the chances are the worker will want to stay with the company longer. A reduction in employee turnover leads to higher quality and savings in employee training.

Finding the Right Fit

The search for a freelancer can take a few days to a series of months as it will depend on the needs of your business. About 34 percent of the U.S. workforce is made up of freelancers. It’s a growing work sector that has opportunities for you to find professionals in graphic design, healthcare, consulting, writing, and human resources.