Sometimes small business owners turn to independent contractors for projects, which can have its benefits. However, it is important to make sure you're informed about hiring contractors before doing so.
There are a number of advantages to turning to independent contractors for your small business's needs, according to BizFilings. This sort of labor can offer benefits in terms of taxes, as well as other regards of business operations. You're required to pay certain taxes and benefits to your employees, and by hiring third party contractors you can bypass these transactions. By taking this path for a project, you can avoid charges such as the Federal Insurance Contribution Act or social security tax, the Federal Unemployment Tax Act, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, worker's compensation and retirement plans.
These sorts of things are taken care of by the individual contractor, which relieves you of some responsibilities as a business owners. However, you're going to have to do your research well and determine the quality of each contractor you take a look at. For more on how to hire contractors intelligently, take a look at the tips below:
1. Flexibility is important
When you're looking at the contracting options available to you, make sure that you take into account the job schedule, the U.S. Small Business Administration suggested. Often times when you need something on deadline, or you're presented with a task that required skills learned on-the-go, then a contractor may be the right decision. Contracting deals often come with the advantage of flexibility, which can prove beneficial for some projects.
2. Take care when drafting your contract
Be careful when coming up with a deal between your business and the independent contractor, FindLaw recommended. The contract is one important tool you can utilize to distinguish the difference between the contractor and your employees. This is your opportunity to take advantage of the tax and non-tax financial benefits that independent contracting can offer. Be clear about the financial plan when outlining the contract, and contact a financial services expert if you have to.
When you're hiring independent help, the law advice outlet explained that the contract should include an explicit note that the individual is an independent contractor, a clear definition of the job requirements, a concise payment schedule, identification of the payment source and a statement explaining that there will be no employee benefits.
3. Make sure you're saving
Part of this is putting together a solid contract, but make sure that your deal with the contractor will save you money in the long-run, the SBA explained. When you're hiring a contractor, you may at first be shocked about the fact that the hourly rate will seem a bit high – but this is normal. Your savings will come through the fact that you don't have to pay benefits to a contractor – for the most part, so long as you outline it in the contact. The savings that most business owners realize by hiring an independent contractor can melt away without the proper research. Make sure you understand who you're hiring and the charges involved, as well as that the contract is clear, before finalizing any agreement.
4. Make sure that you treat the contractor like a contractor
Don't treat a contractor like an employee once the deal is completed, FindLaw noted. This doesn't mean that they shouldn't be treated like human beings, it just means that these are independent workers for a reason, and you're not their boss. The more your relationship with the individual seems like that of one with an employee, the more the IRS will believe that's because it is – if the agency does get involved in your financials.
Use these four tips to intelligently hire a contractor for your small business needs.