If you came to this article hoping for a list of the top ten companies to work for as a freelance content writer, I’m going to disappoint you. Not because I wanted to intentionally deceive you, but because I am simply biased.
I was very lucky to have found Hire a Writer early in my freelance career, and it would be hard for me to put into perspective the sheer breadth of work and companies at our disposal as freelance content creators.
What I would rather focus on, are the qualities that a freelancer should search for when looking for a company to join. Every freelancer has different needs, and different expectations, especially when just getting started – I most certainly did.
Regardless of your goals, aspirations, skill level, or otherwise, I’ve tried to break down the five components that you should consider when interviewing a potential partner. And make no mistake, an interview goes both ways. They may be vetting your skill level and core competencies as a freelancer, but you should also put the company you are exploring doing business with under the microscope.
5 Things To Look For As A Freelance Writer
On the surface, putting each potential partner, or client, under the microscope might seem like a combative approach. The reality is that it allows you to protect yourself, and insulate your business. Jumping at an opportunity might be necessary from time to time, but these five components should be weighed and measured each time you are evaluating a company.
Time is our most valuable commodity as freelancers. That probably isn’t a shocking revelation, but it is worth mentioning. But flexibility is more than how a company approaches deadlines. It ultimately revolves around how well they work with you and your schedule.
As your business grows, finding a company that understands that you may have other clients and responsibilities outside of their organization is worth its weight in gold. Those that don’t respect this aspect of working with a freelancer should honestly be avoided at all costs.
Look for red flags, especially if you are signing a contract with the organization. Non-disclosure agreements are pretty standard, but a non-compete could put you in a bind and restrict who you can work with outside of the organization. This might not be a big deal if you work across a wide variety of industries, but it can be incredibly restrictive if you look to niche down and specialize in a particular field.
There will undoubtedly be projects that you are brought in on that are limited in scope, and those can be amazing opportunities. Even as I got started with Hire-A-Writer, there was a litmus test to make sure that I was writing at the level needed to maintain the company’s reputation in the industry. Even then, there was an opportunity to expand with the organization and work on a variety of different projects.
A great company for a freelance content writer should be like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. The starting point is just that, a starting point. From there, you should have a variety of opportunities to expand into different industries, clients, and writing styles.
During the evaluation process, don’t be afraid to ask what the journey for top content writers looks like. Doing so can reveal potential concerns early in the process.
3. Growth Opportunities
The ability to grow your business should be a foregone conclusion. What I mean when I say growth opportunities is the ability to grow your skillset or expand your role – all with a safety net. The very best companies are willing to invest in every member of their team, including freelancers.
Training components are easily overlooked, but they can help you expand your knowledge, allowing you to get more entrenched with your clients, and become an essential part of their teams.
4. Community Support
You are a freelancer, what does community support even mean? I’ve found that it means everything. The ability to bounce ideas off of colleagues that come from wildly different backgrounds is an invaluable resource as a freelance writer.
Admittedly, this was a component that I never even considered when I first started freelance writing. I was solely focused on growing my client base, only to realize later that having a community that can provide guidance and was there to cheer me on was a tremendous catalyst for my business.
Not all companies will champion this aspect, simply because we are viewed as a 1099 employee. Those that do, should immediately be put to the top of your list.
Just because you aren’t a full-time employee doesn’t mean you should be kept in the dark. Yes there may be things that are outside of the scope of your work as a freelancer, but everything within your world with a company should be transparent.
Billing is likely the first thing that comes to mind, but it goes well beyond that component. Less transparent companies will withhold critical information that makes doing the job well more difficult. Do your homework and take the time to connect with other writers from the organization you are exploring before jumping into bed with them. This can save you a lot of headaches down the road.
Working With Hire-A-Writer As A Freelancer
As I said before, I am biased in my opinion of Joy and the Hire a Writer team, which did make this article a little more challenging to write. My best piece of advice for any freelancer is to do your due diligence when vetting potential employers. Not every business in the industry has your best interest at heart, and very few of them will be your biggest cheerleader.
If you are exploring a role within the Hire a Writer team, feel free to connect with me. Like everyone else in our community, I am happy to share my thoughts because we want you to make the best decision for your business.