A pile of wood blocks labeled 1, 2, and 3

Here’s the simple truth: writing a job post that attracts the right freelancer is insanely easy, but most of us overthink it, which can make the process take more time than expected. Before seeing tips on how to write them more quickly, here are three reasons why you’ll want to get it done right…

Why it Matters

Your job post becomes part of your contract

When posting a project on freelancer marketplaces like Upwork, your description of the work to be done is typically incorporated into your service contract with each independent contractor (IC) you engage. In other words, your post is similar to a statement of work (SOW). So be sure to describe all the services and deliverables that the freelancer will complete.

You can affect worker classification

That’s right, your project description can affect the worker’s classification as an IC. Unlike employees, ICs should not be asked to do any work that’s not agreed to in their contract. Companies can get into trouble when their contracts do not specify the work to be done or only include a general list of duties to be performed as needed.

You can get more accurate bids

Remember that your job posts help the right freelancers find you. When you write strong project descriptions, you’ll not only attract more qualified freelancers, you’ll also receive more accurate bids.

3 Easy Steps to Writing a Project Description

Freelancers are business owners. In order for a business to bid on your project, you should provide enough details for them to set the price, know they’re qualified, and confirm they can be available when you need the project done.

When writing a project description, you just need to remember RTT: Results, Targets, Time.

  • Results: What do you need done? Specify all services and deliverables. Remember to focus on the work, not the worker.

Example:
No: Insightful, creative copywriter to write articles for our blog.
Yes: Write 500-word article about contingent workforce trends.

  • Targets: When do you need it? Specify any deadlines for deliverables.

Example:
No: Attend meetings, be available for last-minute rushes, and a team player.
Yes: Deliver first draft by November 15, 2016, timeline requested for final draft.

  • Time: What are the start and end dates? If you’re unsure, you can write “not sure” on the post. Note: In some countries, an open-ended date can weigh against independent contractor classification. If you’re not sure of a realistic end date, feel free to ask the freelancer to provide the duration in their proposal, so you can include that in the contract offer.

Example:
No: Project is potentially ongoing
Yes: Start date: November 1, 2016. End date: December 1, 2016

[See how to craft a great job post for a .NET developer]

Let’s put it all together:

Do not:
We need a highly-creative graphic artist who can turn projects around quickly. Must have at least 3 years of agency and retail industry experience. The graphic artist will provide graphics production or audio and video elements for training assets or other company projects as needed. And design and create original material using basic elements of graphic design and media development typically creating moderately complex assets.

Do:
Prepare an infographic describing the company’s enterprise service. All background information and statistics will be provided. The design should represent the shift to “digital” and be creative, engaging and informative. We need the final infographic within one month. Freelancers are requested to provide a timeline for completing the infographic in their proposals.

[Get tips for writing the ideal job post for data scientists]

Remember, RTT: Results, Targets, Time. When you focus only on the work that needs to be done, you can write job posts more easily, and you make it easier for the right freelancer to find you.

Ready to get more work done, faster with freelancers? Post your project today!