Why Outsourcing To A Virtual Employee Instead Of A Freelancer Is A Better Form Of Telecommuting

If you stop to consider, outsourcing is a form of telecommuting, except that the person who works for you is probably sitting thousands of miles away in a distant country instead of just a few blocks away in the same city.

Outsourcing offers two kinds of telecommuting options – freelancer and virtual employee. Of the two, hiring a virtual employee may be a far better idea than outsourcing to a freelancer. There are several reasons for this.

1.No risk with a virtual employee. Telecommuting comes with its own set of risk and benefits. There are issues of security, liability issues, lack the control over employees’ environments and so on. While these concerns are applicable to a freelancer who usually works from home, alone and unsupervised, they do not apply to the virtual employee. This is because the virtual employee may well be doing telecommuting, but they are still working in a proper office environment – that of the vendor.

2.Work space is located in a safe, clean, controlled environment. A freelancer works from home and a home simply cannot compare with an office in terms of ambience or facilities. The office of the virtual employee is equipped with the latest infrastructure, advanced technology, hardware and software. It is safe, clean and controlled.

3.All the necessary equipment is at the disposal of the virtual employee. Software professionals who are working on complicated PHP development, Java programming or coding projects require advanced software to be able to do justice to their outsourced projects. An established outsourcing service provider who has domain expertise in these IT fields would have all the necessary equipment, hardware and software installed for the benefit of those employees who are engaged in these projects. Not so a freelancer, who may be handicapped by space and finances to be able to splurge on far too advanced and complicated equipment for just one project.

4.Ease of communication. In any kind of long-distance working arrangement, whether it is telecommuting from within the same city or across huge geographical distances, communication is the key to success.Outsourcing vendors understand the importance of smooth communication channels and as such have all kinds of processes and gadgets in place such as video conferencing, VOIP, Skype, telephones with access codes to international numbers and so on. A freelancer would hardly have access to advanced technology-aided communication channels apart from those powered by the internet (emails and instant messaging).

5.Adequate back-up and support.Power outages,equipment breakdown, software glitches – all are taken care of by the vendor’s vigilant IT support staff.

6.Similarly, non-work related issues like employee benefits, sick leave, vacations, bonuses etc are looked after by the HR executives. It’s a streamlined process and makes working with a virtual employee akin to working with your own locally hired employee, minus the headaches.

Successful collaboration and initiating long-term projects is easier with a virtual employee but next to impossible with a freelancer. Telecommuting and outsourcing to a virtual employee – both are similar except that with a virtual employee you also enjoy huge financial savings.