Digital News South Africa

Managing your business in the freelance economy

Remote working is the way of the future, and with the rise of the gig economy, driven by an ever-growing freelance workforce, comes the challenge of project managing a team working from different locations. It can really only work if you have the systems in place to manage it.
Image credit: Mark Adams -
Image credit: Mark Adams -

Imagine how much more productive and profitable your business could be, if your team had more time in the day? If they could spend less time organising existing projects, and more time strategising for future income?

One of the toughest challenges facing modern marketing and advertising agencies, is project management in the freelance economy. So many people, focused on so many different aspects, based so far apart, working simultaneously on so many projects. It’s enough to make anyone’s head spin, even the most seasoned project lead.

Freelancers are often hired at scale, which adds a great degree of complexity to management – which is where the need for a freelancer management solution comes in.

Benefits of a freelance economy for businesses

Global trends show that hiring talent in the workforce is moving from a fixed cost to a variable cost, with companies staffing up and down as needed. Freelancers can be contracted on a per-project basis, for specific initiatives for which their skills and expertise are suited. The freelance model allows companies to harness the abilities of multiple consultants, often for the price of a single full-time hire with a more limited skill set.

The cost-saving element related to this is just one of the benefits of a freelance economy for businesses (especially advertising agencies). The contemporary freelancer is an experienced professional with a specific set of skills, whose track record and personal brand are strong enough to support a thriving business. They can add huge value to a business enterprise by leveraging their networks, which tend to be extremely well-developed, to introduce the business to valuable contacts who can facilitate entry into new markets and avoid costly missteps.

The challenge lies with managing multiple freelancers and streamlining workflow from a distance.

We appreciate that freelancers, or independent contractors, are critical in scaling our businesses for growth, but how do we manage project progress when we all work in different places. A business needs to adopt new systems and processes which can help facilitate this.

When your business currency is time, as it is with advertising and marketing agencies and also with legal firms, inefficient management results in time wastage, and this in turn leads to less profit. The solution lies in investing in the best possible management software system.

Only an all-in-one project management software system, specifically designed with the modern marketing world in mind, can equip marketing and advertising agencies to streamline work flow and manage entire teams – no matter how many people, no matter where they might be based – through one, single application.

Empowering management platforms

We live and work in the knowledge economy, but we are powerless if we are unable to share this knowledge with one another. Management platforms that empower agencies by facilitating knowledge sharing, enabling teams to work better, faster, and smarter, are the way to go.

For most of the freelance workforce, working for advertising, marketing and design agencies from their own workspace, is the optimum choice, as it simply requires a computer, software and access to the internet. Today, a number of workers are freelancing by choice, relishing the opportunity to set their own schedules, choose their assignments and work independently. Others have turned to contingent work out of economic necessity.

More than half of all global employees believe that they are more productive when working from home than their office-based counterparts. Those that work from home also believe that they suffer less stress than they do when working in an office.

By providing them with a singular workflow management platform, project management platforms can actively improve collaboration between these freelance contractors and the core company team, and even clients – resulting not only in better understanding between the relevant parties, but also improved workflow and as a direct result, increased profitability!

About Dan Marcus

Dan Marcus is the CEO of specialist project management software company, Magnetic. He is a smart thinker and an entrepreneur of note who started his first company at the age of 18, and has since built and led four successful business ventures - the latest of which is Magnetic. He has earned a reputation as a game-changer in the South African business milieu, and a man who doesn't follow convention, preferring to rely on his own instincts.
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