We’ve discussed finding outsourced workers for your indie studio many times here at Game Academy, but it’s an important topic. Especially if you are in the beginning process of growing your indie studio quickly, you simply cannot do it all. You need help, and the best way to get the help you need, when you need it, all at an inexpensive rate? You guess it: hiring outsourced professionals.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a trick to hiring quality outsourced professionals. You are going to hire professionals that are a miss now and again (in fact, this may happen more times than it doesn’t). But don’t be discouraged! You’ll eventually find the outsourced professionals that are ideal for your indie studio, and the best part? You can actually find outsourced workers that you will want to keep around and can trust!
But it all starts with how you write the original ad
If you are using an outsourcing platform such as Elance, oDesk, or Freelancer.com, you need to obviously explain what type of freelancer you are searching for. What type of skills should they have? What type of work will they be doing? Be as detailed as possible when explaining the nature of the job.
When I’m hiring my own freelancers, I also like to instruct freelancers to begin their proposal with a phrase. That shows me they read the entire ad and are still interested in working with me. This also avoids freelancers that copy and paste their past proposals and tweak them to fit your ad. These types of freelancers are looking for a quick buck and won’t give you the results you need, so this technique really kills two birds with one stone.
Samples are a must
When hiring outsourced workers, I also inform them that they must give me examples of their work. This doesn’t mean I’m only giving experienced professionals a chance, though. On the contrary: I’ve had candidates actually create their own content just for my proposal that have went on to do great work for me! You simply want to find people that can prove to you that they’re worth hiring. Anybody can go online, submit a copy-and-paste proposal, and tell you that they’re worth hiring, but to actually prove it? That’s reserved for the few that actually know what they’re doing.
Discuss the project with them face-to-face
Or voice-to-voice. I always like to speak with my potential outsourced workers before I hire them. It gives me a great way to be able to tell if the person actually has his/her stuff together, or if I’m going to be hiring someone I just can’t jive with. You’d be amazed how many people write awesome proposals, have stellar samples, but simply can’t/won’t follow simple directions. A simple conversation via phone or even meeting them in person can help you to gauge who is worth hiring and who is worth passing by.
You don’t have to do a typical interview process, either. Just chat with them. Talk to them about their favorite games (the employees you hire must be gamers to fully understand what they’re working on), some of the projects they worked on in the past, and so on. If the individual can articulately tell you how they completed certain projects and some of their work history, then they can definitely give you the results you want.
Have any questions/comments about outsourcing? Let us know in the comments below!