Is it possible to hire a freelance writer without getting hurt?!?

by sam770
25 replies
Hi Folks,
I am in a big dilemma...
We're in the content business and many times we are fully booked with more work coming in so we started to consider to hire another writer.
My concern is that the writer will contact the clients behind my back and offer him similar services at a lower price. I don't want to lose clients that are used to us and very happy with the services...

What can be done? We must have a new writer (it is a freelance arrangement) but I don't want to get into situations where the writer will contact clients behind my back.
I thought of creating a contract that would stipulate that the writer can't do this, but I won't be able to know if the writer really did it since it is pretty easy to cover up for such a thing.

Any suggestions on how to handle this?

Thanks,

Sam
#asap #concerns #hire #writer
  • Profile picture of the author Weedy92
    Sign a no compete agreement.. Don't give them the clients information. Send topic/content requirements..
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    • Profile picture of the author sam770
      Thanks Harvey,
      Like I said, even if the writer signs a "no compete agreement" - he can still make moves behind my back without me knowing anything about it...
      Anyways, do you have any sample of this type of agreement.

      Regarding your other suggestion of not exposing details regarding clients -it is still easy to reach the client because the freelance writer will be able to search Google for part of the text in quotes and find his content. Then he can easily contact the owner and offer him his services directly at a lower rate. Did you think about that?

      Sam


      Originally Posted by Weedy92 View Post

      Sign a no compete agreement.. Don't give them the clients information. Send topic/content requirements..
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      • Profile picture of the author Weedy92
        Originally Posted by sam770 View Post

        Thanks Harvey,
        Like I said, even if the writer signs a "no compete agreement" - he can still make moves behind my back without me knowing anything about it...
        Anyways, do you have any sample of this type of agreement.

        Regarding your other suggestion of not exposing details regarding clients -it is still easy to reach the client because the freelance writer will be able to search Google for part of the text in quotes and find his content. Then he can easily contact the owner and offer him his services directly at a lower rate. Did you think about that?

        Sam
        Sample Contracts - Employment and Non-Competition Agreement - Tempur-Pedic International Inc. and Lou Hedrick Jones - Business Agreements

        Change that around.. Plenty of free ones online. If they make moves behind your back, you claim a lawsuit or to simply things, contact the clients who start using that person. Explain to them you and your employee have signed into a legal agreement, and the agreement has been breached, and will now invovle them in a legal matter. Let them know should they wish to avoid this, they need to revoke their employment of the new writer immediately. Most of the time this is enough in itself to produce fear and a desire to avoid using that person.

        Yes, that's very true. Not much you can do about that. At the end of the day it's just about hiring trust worthy people..
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        • Profile picture of the author sam770
          Thanks, I appreciate this a lot!


          Sam


          Originally Posted by Weedy92 View Post

          Sample Contracts - Employment and Non-Competition Agreement - Tempur-Pedic International Inc. and Lou Hedrick Jones - Business Agreements

          Change that around.. Plenty of free ones online. If they make moves behind your back, you claim a lawsuit or to simply things, contact the clients who start using that person. Explain to them you and your employee have signed into a legal agreement, and the agreement has been breached, and will now invovle them in a legal matter. Let them know should they wish to avoid this, they need to revoke their employment of the new writer immediately. Most of the time this is enough in itself to produce fear and a desire to avoid using that person.

          Yes, that's very true. Not much you can do about that. At the end of the day it's just about hiring trust worthy people..
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      • Profile picture of the author onSubie
        Originally Posted by sam770 View Post

        Regarding your other suggestion of not exposing details regarding clients -it is still easy to reach the client because the freelance writer will be able to search Google for part of the text in quotes and find his content. Then he can easily contact the owner and offer him his services directly at a lower rate. Did you think about that?
        I don't think this should be a big worry. It is extra effort for the writer and not necessarily an effective way of stealing clients.

        Your writer won't know where or when the article will be published and further, indexed. If it is in a member site, Kindle or other place that is not indexed, they won't be able to find it with Google.

        And even if he does find it, there is no certainty that the site owner/manager who published it is the actual paying client or another outsourced worker.

        It seems a writer would make more money spending that time and effort writing.

        Have you had problems like this before?

        Mahlon
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  • Profile picture of the author jideofor
    Simple as said above. Why would you give out your client's info?

    This is a leverage for you--work less and earn more--by hiring more people to write for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    I think if you are the middle man and don't give them the client's info, there's going to be less of that going on, but you're right ... they could always Google the content and find them.

    's never really 100% protection, but a contract is a good start. Don't know how hard it would be to actually enforce a contract say if you are in the US and the freelancer is in another country. Are you really going to try to sue internationally? Probably not. It would be difficult and expensive.

    I think the best you can do is be the middleman, have a contract and do your best to find trustworthy freelancers.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Banned
      (i) Never give an employee/subcontractor any of the clients' details;

      (ii) Always be clear at the outset with potential employees/subscontractors that if they work privately for any client of your business, they won't ever get any more work from you.

      There are certainly countries where contractual clauses like that don't necessarily stand up in court, depending on their exact wording, because they're "in restraint of trade" and can therefore be held void in contract law "on public policy grounds" (yes, really), but their inclusion in an agreement might still serve you well as a deterrent, even if so.
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  • Profile picture of the author sarah23
    as suggested above, best way will be to bound your write legally by not contacting your clients..
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    • Profile picture of the author D Joseph
      There is always a risk when using a freelancer that this will happen. Best thing is to not share your client's info/contact details and have the freelancer sign a contract with you. Screen your freelancers thoroughly.

      On the other side, build good relationships with your clients so they will want to keep you as their content provider. Clients are interested in more than just the lowest price. Always meet your deadlines, deliver high quality content, and go the extra mile to keep your clients happy. It will make it that much more difficult for them to be lured away...
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  • Profile picture of the author sam770
    Thanks a lot guys,
    I appreciate this a lot

    Sam
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  • Profile picture of the author MHWSO
    Hi Sam,

    I agree with everyone else, but I understand your concern. The clients are yours, and it frightening to think that someone could just underhandedly take them away.

    It's really like any other business. You take a risk, and hope for the best. If the best doesn't happen, you can do whatever everyone else does and sue.

    Look at it this way, if you do end up hiring a content writer that ends up taking one of your clients, you'll fire that person, so he or she won't be getting anymore of your work.

    Know that it also doesn't often happen. As long as you look into the writer's background, such as how long he or she has been writing, and how many people he or she has written for, you should be okay.

    Good luck in growing your business - sounds like it's going in the right direction!!
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  • Profile picture of the author contentwriting360
    Banned
    We once outsourced. Now, we operate our content writing business 100% in-house. We have never had any single incident where our workers leaked our clients' information.

    Two things we did:
    1. We have set crystal-clear expectation to our workers on what may happen to their reputation and employment if they are caught leaking client's information.
    2. We do not divulge any of our client information to them. When we receive the details of our client's order, we do not forward it as is. We summarize everything. We do not even provide those websites of our clients unless otherwise necessary, but we write something that will make the writer think that that website is only for his or her reference.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by contentwriting360 View Post

      Now, we operate our content writing business 100% in-house.
      Odd, because one could argue that you spend a considerable amount of time trolling for lower priced offers, and are especially fond of picking for review copies:

      Stop settling for low level articles. Get high quality affordable content today! (#143, #147)

      FREE Special SEO Article Offer for All Warriors - Limited to ONLY 10 Warriors (#19)

      High Quality Article Writing Service Only Charge $0.7 Per 100 Words - Review Copies Are Available (#14, #25, #39, #43, #46)

      [White smoke Checked]+[Copyscape Passed]->[Professional Content]@Best Rate (#9)

      Your Quest For The Ultimate Content Provider Ends Now! (#3, #5)

      Premium Articles - American Writer - Limited Spots Available (#2)

      Guaranteed: High Octane, Persuasive ...ing Sales Copy (#2)

      Pro tip of the day guys: your post history is public. Better be sure what you say matches what you do.
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      • Profile picture of the author contentwriting360
        Banned
        Hey Joseph - We were inquiring to those low-cost content providers because some Warriors are looking for < $0.01 per word rate. That isn't our standard rate. If, after explaining to them the kind of quality that they will be getting from us, they are still sticking to their budget of less than a cent per word, we refer folks that charge less than a cent per word. We don't build competition with fellow providers of content writing services but relation.

        Now, before you give a professional (:rolleyes tip to anyone, make sure you know the story on why they do such. Don't assume. Almost everyone knows you here in Warrior Forum. Obviously, that recognition added more confidence in you, which is good, but I do hope it does not make you think that whatever you say is accurate.
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        • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
          Banned
          Originally Posted by contentwriting360 View Post

          Hey *Snip*
          The posts are linked, we'll let the people draw their own conclusions. Again, you're kinda putting your foot in your mouth here, since you are seen openly stating in more than one of those threads that "we are looking to hire writers". You never say "we wanna test you, and send you work for those who can't afford us (because $.02 per word is such a high end number :rolleyes".

          Bit harder to talk yourself out of that corner when you can't blow up testimonials in colored text for 20 posts in a row to hide things like in your sales thread, huh .
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      • Profile picture of the author salegurus
        Originally Posted by Joseph Robinson View Post

        Odd, because one could argue that you spend a considerable amount of time trolling for lower priced offers, and are especially fond of picking for review copies
        Lol, getting review copies from the competition, priceless...
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        • Profile picture of the author contentwriting360
          Banned
          What's even more priceless is when you offer a value-add to your client, by finding somebody else that will suit their budget, even if you know that you're seeking someone who also offers the same service that you do.

          Competition, per se, is never outside us. It's within us. We compete to ourselves to do even better. :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:


          Originally Posted by salegurus View Post

          Lol, getting review copies from the competition, priceless...
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  • Profile picture of the author starcraft2
    Banned
    don't forget to scan with copyscape for plagiarism
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  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    On the odd occasions when I have worked for a client who has clients, I have never had a co9ntract and never needed one because I am an honest writer and would never poach. I even got an email from a client's client direct once asking if I would work for them directly and I told my client immediately.

    Honesty and respect are how I treat my clients. I can't speak for other writers.
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    Writer/Editor/Proofreader. Place orders.

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    • Profile picture of the author fin
      I'd just find someone you trust.

      When I get articles I get all the details. I think you need to if you want to write good articles.

      I wouldn't bother asking someone to sign any contracts. Do you really thing that will make any bit of difference?

      Not everyone is out to cheat.
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  • Profile picture of the author Socialbakers
    The best way to do this is to have your regular and verified writers. If you don't have that option, always check the content for plagiarism, using some online tools, otherwise you might get your fingers burned, because people today just want money at any cost and are willing to do a lot and undertake a cheap shot for that.
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    • Profile picture of the author 4DayWeekend
      This is a dilemma that you will not only face with writers, but with freelancers in a number of creative disciplines.

      The key is project management. You have to oversee everything. Just remember to factor that into the costs - you can spend a lot of time going between your client and the freelancer.
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    • Profile picture of the author contentwriting360
      Banned
      That's a greatly baked answer, Socialbakers.

      I certainly agree. When we were starting, we faced such problem until we came up with our quality control processes. Sometimes, it's either you learn from the experience of others or you experience it yourself. Personally, I will choose the former because it's less costly and less painful.

      Originally Posted by Socialbakers View Post

      The best way to do this is to have your regular and verified writers. If you don't have that option, always check the content for plagiarism, using some online tools, otherwise you might get your fingers burned, because people today just want money at any cost and are willing to do a lot and undertake a cheap shot for that.
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  • Profile picture of the author goindeep
    Originally Posted by sam770 View Post

    Hi Folks,
    I am in a big dilemma...
    We're in the content business and many times we are fully booked with more work coming in so we started to consider to hire another writer.
    My concern is that the writer will contact the clients behind my back and offer him similar services at a lower price. I don't want to lose clients that are used to us and very happy with the services...

    What can be done? We must have a new writer (it is a freelance arrangement) but I don't want to get into situations where the writer will contact clients behind my back.
    I thought of creating a contract that would stipulate that the writer can't do this, but I won't be able to know if the writer really did it since it is pretty easy to cover up for such a thing.

    Any suggestions on how to handle this?

    Thanks,

    Sam
    Dont be so paranoid.

    If your writer is going to go behind your back and quote the customer, he deserves to leave and the customer deserves and email from you

    Think positive. Most freelance writers want a genuine relationship with someone that can feed them work.
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