If you’re a business owner looking to outsource some of your work, it can sometimes be challenging to find the right person for the job. If you’re a freelancer on the hunt for your next gig, it can difficult to find just the right opportunity.
Looking to rectify this situation is Project4Hire.com, a marketplace that connects clients with freelancers. The site serves as the subject of today’s review and I’ll take you on a brief tour of what this bid-based job board has to offer.
Freelance Designers, Programmers, and Writers
As with other freelance marketplaces that you may find on the Internet, Project4Hire provides a venue in which business owners can actively seek out freelancers to complete their projects. This freelance marketplace handles a wide range of possible projects, including web development, software support, engineering, graphic design, and telemarketing.
Since I am a freelance writer, the area of particular interest to me is the writing section. There, you can find postings for copywriting, forum posting, technical writing, press releases, and so on.
One of the featured posting calls for the creation of a social networking site. The client (“mike2109”) is looking for someone to develop a microblogging platform similar to that of Twitter. He outlines his request, states his maximum budget, and lists his preferred payment methods. Project4Hire offers a Safe Transfer system, which acts as an escrow service for a $20 fee.
Registered freelancers can then submit their bids, saying how much they’ll charge, when they’ll deliver, and provide any additional comments to persuade the potential buyer. These bids are visible to the public.
To help ensure that they are getting the right person for the job, buyers can take a look at the registered freelancers list with Project4Hire. There, they can see the country, username, freelancer type, rating (out of ten stars), and any posted reviews. Clicking through, they can then look at the individual profile.
Shown above, for instance, is the profile of TechnologyGuru. In the profile, he can state his areas of expertise, average hourly rate, and so on. The page also shows stats (bids placed and projects won), as well as space for portfolio items.
No personal contact information is provided. This is because Project4Hire maintains the relative anonymity of both clients and freelancers. When a successful bid has been placed and accepted, the contact information is then exchanged. Before that, the only communication between the parties is through the Project4Hire board.
Fees, Charges, and Monetization
How much does it cost to use Project4Hire? According to the FAQ, clients are not charged any fees for posting projects to the job board. They are also not charged when a successful bid is accepted.
Instead, the freelancer is responsible for what is known as the Project Acceptance Fee. Project4Hire charges a 5% commission, based on the winning bid, and this must be paid before contact information is provided. The client can choose to pay this fee on the freelancer’s behalf, but is not obligated to do so.
The exception would be if a client wanted to post a permanent employment ad. There would be no bidding here, as the employer specifies exactly the salary that he or she will be paying. A $10 fee is charged for posting a permanent employment ad.
These fees are not the only way that Project4Hire makes money. As you navigate through the website, you’ll notice that they have implemented a series of Google AdSense ads as well. I think that this is ultimately counterproductive, because these ads can potentially lead site visitors to competing freelance marketplaces and work-at-home style websites. You want clients and freelancers to stick around, not go to some other job board.
Get Started with Project4Hire
Getting started with Project4Hire is very simple. There is a short signup form, an email address verification process, and then the profile registration form. After that, you are free to post jobs (if you’re a client) or bid on projects (if you’re a freelancer).
Compared to some of the other subscription or fee-based freelance marketplaces on the Internet, the “free” nature of Project4Hire is certainly appealing. You only pay the 5% commission when a winning bid is accepted and using the escrow system ensures that the funds are secured.