Employee or Independent Contractor?

When You Just Need to Get ‘Er Done! Employees vs. Independent Contractors 

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From Story Bistro, Tea Silvestre Godfrey provides excellent advice when you need to hire someone to help.  She asks personality questions (“Are you a bit of a control freak?” and “Are you a bit commitment phobic?”) to help you choose and then tells you what you need to do after you make the choice.  Tea writes:

What You Need to Consider before Hiring an Employee

The biggest consideration will be the money and how it’s handled. But if you can fit a regular line item for help into your budget, this might be the best option for you.

Here’s how to tell:

  • Are you a bit of a control freak? Employers get to make the rules (mostly) about how and where work gets done. If you prefer to be in charge of those things, then this might be for you.
  • Do you want to build a team? Employees are a commitment. Are you ready to train and nurture new talent? If the thought of creating an inspiring and constructive workplace sounds like fun, then this might be for you.
  • Are you building a local business? You might be working out of your home right now, but if you’ve got your sights set on a brick and mortar office, then your vision probably extends to building a bigger operation (complete with staff).

If all this gets your motor running, then the next step is to build a part-time person into your budget.

You’ll need to:

  • Check with an HR consultant to make sure this is the right path for you
  • Get estimates for workers’ comp insurance and payroll taxes
  • Create a job description
  • Put together your Employee Handbook
  • Set up payroll services so employees and taxes get paid on time

And that’s just for starters. Seem like a lot? It is. But it’s well worth the time and trouble if you want to grow.

What You Need to Consider before Hiring an Independent Contractor

The biggest thing to remember about independent contractors is that they’re…well,independent. They have big-time say-so over how and where they do their work. And yes, if they don’t meet your expectations, you don’t have to work with them. But you need to be willing to let them figure out the details.

Here’s how to tell if this is the right path for you:

  • Are you a bit commitment phobic? Maybe you’re just not confident enough yet in your earning power. Or perhaps you prefer to stay lean and mean? If this is where you’re at, then hiring an independent contractor is probably for you.
  • Are you building a non-local or mobile business? If you’re working out of your home right now (or from whatever Starbucks location happens to be nearest to you at any given moment), and you want that to continue, then you’ll probably be better off going this route.

If so, (just like for an employee) the next step is to build that person into your budget.

You’ll need to:

  • Check with an HR consultant to make sure this is the right path for you. (Why? Because a lot of folks get independent contractors and employees mixed up, and you don’t want to be one of them. Breaking the rules comes with stiff penalties.)

  • Create an outline of tasks that you want to delegate and appropriate time blocks for accomplishing each.

  • Make sure you’ve got the right technology in place to handle long-distance projects.

Read the full story at When You Just Need to Get ‘Er Done! Employees vs. Independent Contractors | Story Bistro

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