Outsource.com is a brand new (March 2014) site that brings together freelancers and clients. It charges a relatively high membership fee for freelancers (anywhere from $100-$160 for 6 months) in an effort to provide high quality workers for clients.
Joining the site is simple enough. Upon creation of a username and password, you have the ability to make a detailed profile outlining your work experience, skills, availability, etc. Once your profile is complete, the site will match you up with clients and work opportunities. The membership fee gives you credits that can be used to send quotes to potential employers. A quote will include the price you would charge for the task, as well as a personalized message to describe why you are well qualified for the job. The amount you pay for your membership determines how many credits you have. To give a range, the lowest membership allows you to purchase 20 credits per month, while the highest allows for around 40 credits. To send a quote, you must use 3-9 credits credits, meaning you would be able to contact 6 employers a month with 20 credits. Any unused credits will be carried over to the next month. The site guarantees that your quote will be read within 5 days, or you'll get your credits back.
Outsource.com guarantees that if you're not hired within 6 months, you can have another 6 months of membership for free. Clients can pay freelancers directly through the site using PayPal, eChecks (only certain countries), paper checks, wire transfers, and direct deposit. Payments can be set up to be fixed or hourly.
- Amount of users
- Social media
- Payment facilitation
The positives begin from the moment you arrive at the website. The pages are clean, professional, and easy to understand. Furthermore, they're not overcrowded with unnecessary information or obnoxious advertisements. The bottom of the homepage provides key links to the most important information for both clients and freelancers. Overall, navigating the site it easy and enjoyable.
Something that is both a pro and a con-depending on how you look at it-is the relatively small amount of users. The hefty membership fees ensure that only those that are very serious will apply to jobs. Thus, clients receive fewer-but higher quality-applications. The benefits of this are twofold: 1) The clients don't have to comb through hundreds of lousy quotes for each good one and 2) If your quote is not read in 5 days, Outsource.com will refund the credits back to your account.
This brings us to the next pro-the guarantees. Although you have to pay for it, you're promised that your quotes will be seen and essentially given a full year (6 months paid) to find a job. Guarantees this good aren't found on many other freelancing sites.
Another positive are their efforts to advertise and grow the site. The site has a Facebook and Twitter page, both of which are updated with regularity. This gives hope that the relatively new site can quickly expand the number of clients and freelancers.
A final positive is that the site facilitates payments. While this is in no way unique among freelancing sites, there are enough sites that don't offer this feature to make it noteworthy. This feature overall makes the site a one-stop destination for finding work, doing it, and receiving compensation.
- Membership fee
Because the site is so new (Outsource.com has only been around since 2014), there are a lot of unknowns. It was difficult to find the exact number of available job postings, and the 70,000 current registered users is slim compared to powerhouses like Upwork.com (over 4 million users). It's difficult to invest such a significant amount of money in a brand new site. This brings us to the next con, the membership fee. While this is a positive in some ways (see previous section), the fee will likely turn away all but the most serious users. Thus, those looking for part time opportunities may want to look elsewhere. A final con-at least for some-is that the competition may be stiffer on this site. It's clear that they're targeting high quality freelancers, so although fewer applications will be submitted, they will likely be strong ones. This is once again to the detriment of the more average user. While there are a number of good things about Outsource.com, the experts at TBC have a few concerns:
- There aren't a lot of job options
- There are no money back guarantees
- They charge a membership fee
- They are a brand new company with limited experience
The Bottom Line
Overall, this site is attempting to carve out a niche by appealing to high-end freelancers hoping to avoid the crowded applicant pools sometimes found on other freelance sites. While it doesn't boast the sheer number of users or job opportunities compared to the bigger freelance facilitators, outsource.com claims to attract great clients. Furthermore, they make a strong guarantee that applications will be viewed and employment will be found. While only time will tell if this new site will attract the clients and users it seeks, it seems like a solid option for the serious freelancer.