If you are thinking of outsourcing some of the work that you do in your business, this is a good time to do it. There are so many awesome tools to help you work with just the right people in an organized and structured way. It’s amazing what you can do today, working with both contractors and employees at a distance.

First, understand that if you work with a contractor by outsourcing to them, it’s important to realize that you’re working with a professional that likely has their own structure and process in place regarding how they want to communicate with you and work with you.

If they don’t already have a process in place, there is a lot you can do to organize everything. Having said that, it may be wise to work with contractors who do have systems in place. They may already use some of these tips, tools, and steps themselves which will make things easier for you. However, you may choose to work with someone who doesn’t. It’s up to you.

Automate Scheduling

Use a system like TimeTrade, Calendly, or Acuity Scheduling to help schedule meetings and interviews and even work sessions with your contractors, employees, and others. When you place your advertisement for the work, provide a link to the scheduling system. With Acuity, you can include a questionnaire, accept links to a portfolio, resume, and more.

By using a system like this, you can weed through less serious or qualified candidates first. Some questions you ask them might be about their portfolio, or education, or experience. You may also ask for information about references, likes to social media accounts, and so forth, based on what you need them to do for this position.

Host Online Meetings

Software like Zoom.us is inexpensive, stable, and wonderful to use for online meetings with your contractors, employees, and even customers if you need to provide hands-on demonstrations to help them with something. Zoom can be used with any type of computer and works on smartphones.

With Zoom, you can demonstrate how to do things, providing training, talk face-to-face with people to get to know them better, share your screens, and more. At less than 20 dollars a month at the time of this writing, it’s more than worth it to use this system.

Online Project Management

To organize projects between outsourcers, employees, clients, and others, the best idea is to use some form of cloud-based project management system. Some options are Basecamp, Trello, and Asana. Test out free versions to find out if it will work for you. Some people organize their projects using Google Documents or Dropbox too.

Using a project management system is going to help you keep everyone organized more. When you bring on a contractor, they may not necessarily know how to use the system; therefore, you may need to provide some video training and information for them on its uses. Same with customers. This training will ensure more people use the system as needed.

Pay People (And Get Paid)

The other thing you need to consider is how you’re going to pay people. Again, the person you hire may have systems and procedures in place already. In that case, if you want to use them you should use their system since they are their own business and need to run things in a way that is most convenient for them.

However, if you work with someone without a system or who is fine with using your system, a payment processor like PayPal is one of the preferred methods of payment online, because they can use any credit card they want as long as they have a PayPal account attached to it.

Putting these systems in place prior to looking for someone to outsource to will make the entire process a lot easier and more effective. If you’re easy to work with, are organized, and know what you need your contractors to do for you, you’re going to be more likely to work long term with people. That is good for your business.