Master outsourcing: Manage outsourced teams like a professional | Evan Kimbrell | Skillshare

Master outsourcing: Manage outsourced teams like a professional

Evan Kimbrell, Director at Sprintkick

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12 Lessons (1h 41m)
    • 1. Welcome to the class!

      2:23
    • 2. First thing to do

      1:05
    • 3. What is good? Avoid this trap

      9:05
    • 4. Legality with outsourcing

      10:45
    • 5. Types of contractors

      8:13
    • 6. The relationship between price and autonomy

      7:57
    • 7. Country profiles and how to pick your ideal combination

      18:23
    • 8. Getting acquainted with Asana

      12:20
    • 9. Going further with Asana

      9:54
    • 10. Making Asana work for your project

      13:55
    • 11. Class project

      4:51
    • 12. Keep the learning going

      1:45

About This Class

Outsourcing is an amazing entrepreneurial tool, if you know how to use it.

It can save you tons of money, time, and get you access to expertise you otherwise wouldn't have had. But it's a volatile proposition and has been known to go wrong for many of the ill-prepared.

Learn how to harness outsourcing to launch your projects, ideas, and features. Launch faster, cheaper, and better.

In this class, we're going to go over everything outsourcing. Outsourcing is a whole different beast than regular contracting, and it needs to be understood differently. So we're going to cover all the topics where outsourcing differs from regular, in-country contract work.

This class is great if you have experience working with contractors but want to go further and start working overseas. If you don't have experience with the actual DO-ing of hiring contractors, check out my other courses which are a great primer to this course.

What you'll learn:

  • How to understand and navigate the "good trap".
  • The ins and outs of outsourcing legality.
  • How price directly relates to your outsourced contractors autonomy and how to match that to your project goals.
  • How to understand the relative advantages and disadvantages of different geographic zones.
  • How to choose between an outsourced freelancer or firm for your project.
  • How to get up and running with Asana, a free project management tool.
  • How to customize Asana specifically for the task of managing outsourced labor.

What you'll do:

At the end of the course, you'll have the opportunity to go out and look for outsourced contractors. Based on the criteria covered in the course, you'll know how to actively search for outsourced labor that matches your project and has the requisite experience. When you find a potential short list for your project (or a generic project), you'll get to share what you've found and get direct feedback.

Transcripts

1. Welcome to the class!: Hey, guys. I'm Evan Kimbrell, and I'm the director at Sprint Kick, which is a Web and mobile development studio based out of San Francisco, California So this class is called Master Outsourcing. The idea behind this class is that I'm gonna help those of you out there who are interested in outsourcing or have heard about outsourcing bridge kind of the knowledge gap of what you need to know to be comfortable to start outsourcing, not a Q It on a little bit of a secret. I started sprint pick in India, not Indiana, started in India in a very cramped office with an A C that pretty much never worked along this entire journey of working with workers and other cultures, figuring out what areas are best for what tasks. I've accumulated a lot of knowledge on the subject. Everything I talk about in this class is directly related to outsourcing. I know there's a lot of generic information that you could learn about hiring contractors or hiring freelancers, but I've separated that from what exactly do you need to know? To hire outsourced, outsourced meeting people that are outside of your country were to cover all sorts of essential stuff like understanding the relationship between the price you pay, how much autonomy you should expect from your outsourced worker. We're also gonna talk about countries and zones. What areas give you the best type of worker or firm for what types of tasks. We're also gonna cover an introduction to asana. Now, I know a lot of guys out there have used a sauna. It's a very popular free project management tool. But what we're gonna do in this class is I'm gonna show you how you can use that tool, get up and running and then use it specifically for running outsourced teams keeping your project on track. So at the end of this class, hopefully you don't have any fear about outsourcing. Hopefully, you know as much as I do. And hopefully you can jump right into finding firms or finding freelancers that could save you a ton of money. So don't fear outsourcing. Come with me and I'll show you everything I know. Hopefully in this glass, I'm excited to teach. This is one of my favorite topics of all time. So role in the class and I'll see you guys in there 2. First thing to do: Hey, guys, welcome back to the class. So I have an assignment for you really quickly. I want this to be the first thing you dio eso at the bottom of the skill share page. It says discussions, the clip discussions, and then you can click new post. I want you right now to go and do that and introduce yourself. You don't have to tell me a lot of information. You can just say your name or your from. But what I'd like to actually hear from you is one. What do you struggling with? And to what are you looking to get out of the class? I think this is something that helped immensely with the class. I really like to make my classes as engaging as possible. I respond to everyone, and I want to make sure that as I'm teaching, I'm meeting your goals and I know exactly what I'm trying to fix. Okay, so this is the first thing. Just go down to the bottom of the page. Do that now. Don't skip it. You can skip it if you want, but I think you'll miss out. All right. Seeing the next lecture 3. What is good? Avoid this trap: little bit about the concept of what good is and how that applies to outsourced labor. This is a concept that really helped me when I started to wrap my head around it when I first started outsourcing. It was very difficult, as I noticed that there were big differences between what the Outsource Labor would say is good and what I considered good. At first, I thought it was just this huge, just connected, just assumed that they were bad or what they did, but actually would end up happening was I kind of came to a little bit of a revelation. And ever since, it's really helped me know what level of communication that I should engage with with contractors and for you, the listener. This is a side anecdote, but I think it's something that is essential to you, understanding the perspective of the people that you hire. So this really only applies to when you're hiring someone from a country that is cheaper in terms of labor rates. And that usually will mean that the country is significantly poorer than, say, a developed country, a G 20 if you've never been to the country that you're hiring from whether it's, you know, Eastern Europe or specifically India, or even, you know, Central America. This is something that's very hard for you to understand because you assume we all use the same websites. You assume that we all use the same design standards. You kind of assume that what I think is beautiful is what they think is beautiful and and even obviously, there's differences between countries that are right next to each other and have same kind of socioeconomic level. Let's say that you hire freelancer from India. You're thrilled because you have huge cost savings. But you might have followed a less rigid schedule when developing the specifications for your application. You might have erred on the side of I think that the developer could interpret what I'm saying, and I don't need to give every little bit of detail. I don't need to say what style of button he should use in what color palette and what kind of interaction should happen When I touch things on the website. You kind of assume that all of that comes in tow, that they just know that right? That is a false assumption when it comes to an outsource developer. Ah, lot of them simply either one. Do not understand what it is that you want or two. They understand what they think is good, and so they're going to strive to achieve a website or a design that they consider good. Now, here's where the biggest discrepancy is if you've ever been to India, and I did end up living there for quite some time, and I'm gonna use India as an example because this is the I. T. Outsourcing hub. It's by far the biggest group when it comes to outsourcing, and when you go and you start looking for freelancers, you'll probably notice 40 50% of them are from India, India, Bangladesh, even Tree Lanka. But if you ever go to India, you will just notice that. And it's not necessarily the country itself. But if you haven't just look at, say, a website or a billboard or a basic advertisement to you, it just looks physically unappealing. It looks like a design standard that tow us was used in the nineties. I'm gonna bring up a couple websites on the screen that you can see if you just go and look at, say, in the top 10 websites. You can notice what they consider a top 10 website and then look at the design standard and you'll notice that they're designed centered by what we consider good. It's what I would call subpar. They have designs that you would associate with the old version of eBay or very flat basic design that can pullup logo here. This logo, as you notice it, has that gloss candy defect with Grady int that runs to the top. That was a design standard in the United States back and, like, right around the out on the iPhone was coming out like 6 4007 We like to candy everything since 2010 or 11 that stopped being considered by the general U. S. Population as a good design standard. And so we moved on. Then we moved on to like what we apple would call skew more FIC designs. Remember the old IOS apple with the buttons that look like they're almost three D. In a sense, they look like they're actually physically there. An instance with IOS eight, we've moved on to flat basic design, and we're now shifting towards flat is beautiful. You know, I kind of describe how the trends working United States, other countries have different trends, but specifically in India, there trends just typically a lag behind the United States. And so if you live in India and you're constantly consuming all of this advertisement consuming all these websites mobile APS and they're on a different design standard when you naturally and intuitively think of what is good and when you're making an application and you don't have directions as to how to make something work or make something look you're gonna default to or try to achieve what you consider to be good now good is very relative. And that is where the biggest disconnect I've ever experienced with outsource labor is they don't understand what your level of good is and they're good for us is terrible. You know, you could see these examples. I brought up these air just normal things that you see on an everyday basis and again tow us ugly to them. Totally normal. It is not to say that they don't have beautiful advertisement, so they don't have beautiful websites. Clear trip is a great example of an Indian airline booking website. That's fantastic. But then it links you to the airlines in India and their websites are just horrible. They look like front page from the 19 nineties. You need to keep this in mind when you are writing your specifications and when you're communicating with the developer, do not assume they know what you want. Be as specific as possible, especially be specific when it comes to things like the design and things like what type of Java script you should use now When I say design, I mean show them a website and say I like the design from this. I want it to look like this ideally, show them 2 to 3. If they don't know how to recreate that they can use some basic kind of copying techniques . The point is, you're setting a baseline for them. They just know that the end of the day this is what it should look like and that's going to allow them to make improvisations on the spot. And then what? I mean by what the type of Java script you should be using. I mean, what interactions? You should use goto a website and focus solely on what happens when you click things. What happens when you load pages? There are all sorts of intermediate pages that you just are not aware of because you're used to it. Like, for instance, if you look at the lecture I'm doing on E Lance when I go and load my dashboard. Typically, an Indian website will just leave it blank and then have something show up. Once it's loaded. The lance is gonna show a spinning loader so I can know that I'm expecting content to come , and right now it's not ready to load. That's an intermediate pages. What I essentially call it interaction. Things that move. You need to be a specific as possible. The way that you can kind of avoid this good trap is through documentation, and when you work with your graphic designer, sketch out all of the pages you want to design and then design an extra 50% design. Intermediate pages designed what a list looks like when it doesn't come up with something designed with the four of four page looks, like designed everything that could possibly happen every different color. That could happen that when you're like highlighting taxed. Try to think of every single instance and design that out. In that way, when you use outsource labor, you don't have to rely on them to determine, and they're had what good is. They could just follow your directions, but then make sure that they have an example website showing what you consider good quality so that it gave. Look at those and then refer back to them in times when they're in doubt. If you want to get deeper into this goto Alexa dot com site rankings And just look at some of the common countries that you outsource Teoh. And then look at the websites that are on the top 10 typically on the top 10. You know, obviously you have the always of the big ones like Google and Facebook. But look at the ones that are very specific to that area. Look at the bank websites. Look at the airline websites. You could start to get an idea of what they consider beautiful in terms of Web design standards, and this will just give you an idea that there actually is a very big gap between what I'm talking about. When I say good what they think when they say good. The way that you avoid this trap is you communicate more you, ADM or detail to your specifications, and you cover as many bases as you can with terms of screen design when you're working with your graphic design. 4. Legality with outsourcing: Hey, guys, Welcome back to the course. We're gonna talk about legality. How does legality apply to outsourcing? Specifically? This is not contracting in general. I'm talking specifically about how legality applies to win. You take work and you get someone in another country to do it for you. So I'm sure a lot of you run into this problem before or you're wondering to yourself I'm gonna select someone who's overseas. I've never met. I don't even know the city there from I have no instant no connection to them on D. I don't know if they're going to return my money back to me, or they're even gonna do the project once I pay them. Now, if this were the case that we were working the United States or in Europe or wherever you're taking this course, you probably know exactly how you would go about dealing with someone that takes money and doesn't return What you agreed on. The problem here is that we now have to deal with someone who's in a separate country. Well, for the practical matter of what happens if I pay someone and they don't actually give me the work that I want? Well, really, the only way that you address this is through prevention. There is practically no way that you can get money back from someone who works in India who didn't deliver on their promises or might have broken something in your contract. It's actually it's practically impossible unless you go to India or have someone who lives there who can help you through the process. And even then, it could be a six month journey. It's typically not worth it. The way we work with this is we work on prevention. So if you've contacted ad firm directly through, if you watch any other elections, elections where we went through, like the firm list or use Google to find high quality freelancing firms, if that's the case and you work directly through them, you probably did some contract work. For the most part, that contract work is all just a exercise and making you feel better about the project. That's really all it comes down to. That contract might make you feel better, but it's simply not going to help you actually get money back or to remedy any of the broken terms in your contract. It's really just an exercise in futility. The way that I strongly suggest you work through this problem is two things. One you use a platform like the ones we've covered to a least at the bare minimum, handle the payments associated with your project. Now the way that they work is you pay them and then once the project's done, you agree to it. They release it now, if you pay them and your freelancer does not return, what you expected is something something's wrong, something you would be in a normal into a dispute with. That company will then act as the arbiter between the two of you and decide what where the money should go, whether not been finished, what needs to happen before the money should be released. That is incredibly helpful. And thankfully, it's the case that a lot of freelancers on a freelance firms are used to. This concept, it's an escrow, but they're also usedto having these companies that oversee millions of projects, hold on to the money and then make the final determination about releasing it. The downside to that, obviously, is that these companies are gonna take a portion of the payment as the employer. It's not a zoo big of a deal, because the companies, like eLance, a freelancer, up work people per hour. They take the money out of the freelancers pocket so they essentially deduct it from the freelancer. Now your freelancer might bring that up. They might, if you have a long term relationship, asked to be compensated in that. But in my experience, the 7% or 10% or whatever it ends up being sometimes it's lower is almost always worth it. It's always worth knowing that your money is at least protected in the case that something goes wrong. Now, if you've had a long term relationship with the company, you've worked on several projects, then it might be the case that you do not need this at all, and you're perfectly fine saving those cost savings between you and your contractor. Now the other way to remedy this problem is by using a very rudimentary technique, and it's called using milestones. Milestones. You've heard of this. It's a little confusing. I've never heard of it. Essentially, what you're doing is you take your project and you divided up into segments very similar to what we did when we wrote out our project description. But this is for the actual process of building your project. You take it up and you say, Here's one section Here's the second section 3rd 4th that whatever it ISS and then you say , You know, if our total project is, say, $2000 we have five segments in our project, then we'll just divide it. And every time you finish a segment, you'll get paid $400. So what ends up happening is the freelancer will work on one portion, and then once you see that it works, see that it's good. See that it matches your requirements. See that they delivered it on time. There's no issues. You release that milestone, then you go to the next section. Then you go to the next section, and you do that until the project's finished. Now, the downside to this, obviously, is that for the freelancer. They might get a little skittish about this because they're afraid that you might say only , give him a portion of the money or not be happy right after the first section of work. But unfortunately this is kind of the standard even if you use the lance or up work any of those Escrows services, they're gonna make you put everything into milestones anyway, so that's typically what they're used to. Now there's a whole really runs the gamut in terms of like all the different types of milestones setups you can get. A lot of people do 50% up front, 50% of the end. That is better than paying 100% up front. But it's not nearly as good as, say, segmenting it out. Say you pay 20% up front and then you said, you pay out there other 80% over the course of four different milestones in general, it's gonna Yes, it's a negative for the freelancer, but it also creates a little bit. It slows your project down ever so slightly, because now all of a sudden you have four different milestones. This means you have four different checkpoints where they have to present their work to you , wait for you to prove it, and then you have to go through it and make sure that everything is to the T. A lot of times you say this milestone was not done. I want you to go back and fix this and this and this, whereas if you did this in one big milestone, you would have told them to fix everything at the very end. So you lose a little bit of efficiency, but the same time you really do save yourself from getting burned on putting up too much money up front. So that's the best way it all practicality of preventing yourself from getting burned legally in a freelancer relationship using escrow service. They're very easy to use, even if you made the arrangement outside of the escrow service, asked them to then go on to the service and bid on a private project. You can use that. Then you can use, say, a Lance's service to maintain the work. And Adam absolute minimum. Use a milestone system with them, have that in writing, so they know exactly what they need to reach to get paid. And just use that as a kind of a way of preventing yourself from getting burned. Once you then get used to that person, you can pick really whatever you want. Whatever arrangement you think works now legally, what happens if something really does end up blowing up. What happens if they take your idea and they steal it? Well, unfortunately, there's not much you can do because the legality around outsourcing is virtually non existent. Luckily, if you use E lance or you use up working those websites, they have their own terms and agreements. They have a long, lengthy agreements that protect you. In some ways, you can opt to have intellectual property protection, and they'll include that in the legal contract you make with your freelancer. However, what happens if that person does actually steal your idea? Well, really nothing. I mean, there's virtually nothing they can dio. The only thing you can rely on is that you can rely on the fact that you used the techniques in this course to pick a good freelancer, a responsible, trustworthy freelancer that most importantly has a track record. That's the biggest thing you can use to prevent a legality issue. Like, say, I P theft is that you look for someone who has a reputation to protect. If they have 50 projects on their lance profile and this is a big source of income from for them, they're not gonna want to jeopardize that over some small issue. Depending on how larger project is, it's just never worth it. The shallower their work history is, the less inclined they're going to be to use to understand what they have to lose in this type of situation. But if they have a track record, there will be a lot more committed to doing everything right here is a lot less to worry about, but in general, make sure that you're aware of this. It is kind of the wild, Wild West because it is virtually impossible in a lot of these countries to sue them or to have some legal action against the person you hired. Why is that? I mean, it's it's totally because we have court systems in every single country. They work within that country and they don't have any way of interacting between the two. We had Sprint Kick have had disputes with Canadian companies in or in San Francisco and even those two countries that are very, very similar and cooperate on so many different things. We have no regal, we have no legal remedy against them. But in retrospect, we could have saved ourselves by just using simple prevention techniques. So be aware. Legality. There's nothing you can really do. You can't sue someone outside the country, and if you can, and a lot of situations you can. It's very rarely worth it on Lee. If you're doing a multi $1,000,000 project, would it ever make sense to establish a presence in another country and then pursue them legally? The way that you protect yourself legalese use very practical common sense prevention methods. Used milestones use Escrows services. Make sure everything you're doing is written out in writing, not because it makes it legal, but because you can now know exactly what is expected on Do what You should be receiving, and there's no miscommunication between the two of you. You guys have any questions at all or any stories about this post in the group discussion. More than willing to go into depth with this is kind of in general, there are some exceptions. There are a couple countries where I've heard of people be able to do small claims court decisions against other companies, but in general it's just not something you should plan on relying on. If you have legal concerns, then honestly, you should use prevention techniques to protect yourself and honestly past that point. You don't feel safe enough then it's probably the case that you shouldn't be outsourcing. 5. Types of contractors: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course, So in this lecture, we're gonna talk about your subcontracting strategy, and we're going to talk a little bit about what's the best past for you. So before you start your journey of putting together a killer team and finally signing your first multi $1,000,000 contract, you need to set down and have a little bit of a think about what you're subcontracting strategy is going to be. So let me give you a little bit of transparency about how freelancers and contractors are typically divided up. Now, it's really helpful before you go and look for a subcontractor to know what you're gonna expect and to know exactly what you're looking for. Now, first off, you're gonna need to make a decision about price and language. Now, the reason why I say those together is because there almost always related to each other. There are some exceptions, of course. Now some contractors, they're gonna be from countries you've never heard of, and some contractors they're gonna be from probably down the street. There's a big gap when we're talking about distance now, the same time some of them will be able to effectively communicate and communicate fluidly and other ones. They're going to sound probably like drunk robots, really hard to understand. Sometimes they speak like remember, Max, speak that old software program you would use in elementary school. Now a contractor with bad communication skills and an inconvenient time zone, they're probably going to be a lot cheaper now. Obviously, there's exceptions to this. There are still expensive areas that have terrible language skills and terrible time zones . But this is just a generalization. Now a fluent English speaker who lives in ST exact time zone as you, almost sometimes the same city, there obviously gonna be a lot more expensive. Now, how this relates to your business is that each type of contractor can dramatically change the dynamic of how you deliver projects, how you pitch your projects and how you find clients. Now an expensive, articulate contractor, they're probably going to deliver much higher quality of work. But they're also gonna be considerably more expensive. Now that for you means that you're gonna have to push higher prices to your clients and because your rates are higher Now, all of a sudden, your clients are going to expect a considerably higher standard of project quality. So in a lot of cases it can actually cancel itself out. You charge mawr, but the same time your clients asked for a lot more. Now, in this scenario, you might have to cut your margins, especially at the very beginning. So if you go this route, the key here is gonna be your ability to land higher paying contracts that are also probably longer term. Or you need to plan on having a strategy of using higher paying contractors but also having access to other experts that you can bring in to really put that top polish on your products now a cheaper, lower cost contractor with poor English skills. That means that you're gonna have to compensate upfront with MAWR effort from your end, and also you might have to deal with lower product quality. But in this scenario, your margins are always gonna be a lot healthier, and that allows you the option to undercut other providers. So the key to this scenario is if you pick a lower cost option, someone who is not as great at communicating or explaining what they're doing or what needs to be done. The key here is going to be whether or not you can manage them effectively enough to get a good product. Because if you can do that, then your price quality ratio is gonna be fantastic. Now, in the scenario of a more articulate mawr, qualified contractors more expensive, you're not gonna have to spend as much time with them, which means that you can spend more time on other things. Now low cost contractor. It's gonna be the opposite. You spend more time on project management. So which one you want to go with? You want to focus more on sales and then just knowing that your project is more or less covered? Or do you wanna spend more time on project management knowing that at the end of the day, you make more money per project? Now here's the key distinction for me, and this is what I always use when making this decision or consulting someone on how to make this decision. Think about yourself and think about your experience. Do you have a lot of experience working with contractors? Do you have a lot of experience working with distributed teams? Do you speak another language potentially. Do you have any experience being a project manager? How much experience do you have in Web development and Web development projects? If you have a lot of experience and answered yes to a lot of the questions I just asked you , then you're a very good candidate for someone who can use the low cost, high margin option. Now, if you're underdeveloped in this kind of area, then it might make more sense for you to focus on higher paid contractors who can deal with MAWR, have more autonomy, and you focus more on sales. So now one other division that you need to be aware of and you need to make a decision about is whether or not you hire a freelancer or affirm an individual or a company. Now, if you're coming from my outsourcing course, you know that we covered this like to death. But for this course, I'm just gonna simplify it. So one firms come with what are called management layers. This provides transparency, and this provides accountability for your project. It also offloads the work from you onto them when it comes to day to day management. Because of this, they're much less likely to disappear. They're much less likely to run into problems. And if they do not know of the problems there Mawr capable of solving on their own before pulling you into the project. Now, on the flip side, they come with a much higher price tag. Because you're not just paying for your developer. You're also paying for the project manager, whoever ends up managing them, and also firms always have a profit line. Also, keep in mind that firms are slower to move. They have a lot more people in the organization. They can't just drop everything and pick up whatever you need at this moment that you want it. Now individuals are going to be considerably cheaper and considerably more flexible. However, you are the last line of defense in case anything goes wrong, they get sick or any problem arises, they're going to require a lot more management time from you. So again, when considering this division, it really just comes down to experience. Now, if if you're confident you can turn a low cost freelancer contractor into high quality work and you know you have experienced and you know you kind of have your stripes in this field , then you definitely can go for a outsource freelancer. Now, if you're new to this and you want to focus a little bit more on the sales, the branding, the marketing, the promotion pretty much everything else that's involved in running a Web development business, then you might want to choose higher, paid, more capable, better communicating freelancers. You also probably want to lean towards a firm because you will benefit the most from having that management layer that we talked about. You might want. Also focus on someone who has similar time zones to you that's gonna allow you to communicate more effectively and not have this like in between time where you can't communicate with your contractor now, you don't always have to stay this way over time. As you get more experience working with your Web projects, you can transition into working with individuals and working with people who are in different time zones in different countries, and then you could kind of get the best of both worlds. But at the beginning, it's really helpful to know which one you should go for now, and obviously there are in between options you just need to understand that it's kind of like a spectrum right? Certain people are better for using firms. Certain people are better for freelancers. Certain people are better for outsourced labor, and certain people are better for in in country, near me. Same time zone types of contractors. Obviously, the place where you create the most value for your client is when you're picking subcontractors and you look for what other people call like the diamond in the rough on what that basically means. You look for anuses gets much easier as you have more experience. You look for people where their price compared to their communication abilities compared to their capabilities. Something's just off. And so a lot of times you look for people who are undervalued there cheaper compared to how good they are or they're really good compared to how cheap they are. Over time, with enough experience, you can start to mix and match, and you can create whatever funky configuration you can at the beginning, though, it's easy to think of it kind of in this one, too. Solution 6. The relationship between price and autonomy: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture, we're gonna talk about the relationship between price and autonomy when you're hiring a contractor or an outsource freelancer. So this is actually just a quick video. I want to introduce a concept that once I kind of understood this. It really helped me wrap my head around. What's a good bid? What should I expect? And what's an efficient kind of route to take? When I look at the freelancers that are giving me proposals now you've probably noticed right off the bat there is gonna be like a smorgasbord of different prices from different freelancers. Obviously, the price depends on a lot of different things, and you can obviously tell very quickly that place. People who are bidding from, say, the United States are going to bid higher than someone who's bidding from, say, Sri Lanka. So it's obvious that the country of origin makes a big deal in price. There's also a lot of other factors that go into it. We're gonna talk a little bit Maurin depth in the next lecture about the factors that go into pricing and what you should kind of understand So when someone says this is, take me $20 an hour or $200 for your project, there's a lot that's codified into that, and you need to break it down to actually understand where you can find cost savings. But I also understand whether not you're getting a good deal. Now. The concept of autonomy is very important. When it comes to freelancers. You want your freelancer to be as autonomous as possible now. What do I mean by that? I mean that if your freelancer or your firm runs into a problem, how capable are they of solving that problem now? You might think to yourself. I have made my specifications, sheets my instructions perfectly. There's no way they're going to run into issues. I have everything planned out. Okay, that's just flat out. Not true. Even professionals, even companies that have been outsourcing for 20 years they still run into issues on day still run into problems that they could not possibly have foreseen when they wrote their spec sheets or when they originally posted their job. Just a general rule of thumb is that you should expect issues, any little technical bug, any clarification issue any type of say, even if you're outsourcing your marketing, a response that you didn't expect from potential customer or really kind of any issue infrastructure issues, issues, getting gaining access to the accounts you give them. There's a lot of different things that can go wrong Now. What you need to understand about autonomy and how this relates to price is that the more you pay, the more likely or freelancer is going to be capable of solving their own problems on their own without help from you. So let's take an Indian Web developer who has an example. An Indian Web developer that lives outside of a big city that has been working for, Let's say, 4 to 5 years. And they do primarily, Let's say, John, a script in PHP. That person could potentially charge you. Let's say 8 to $12 an hour. They could even be is cheapest $5 an hour if they're less experienced Now, If you saw someone that who's bidding $10 an hour, it's pretty safe to assume that they're not gonna be very autonomous. If something goes wrong, their ability to think on the fly to understand your project as a whole understand the bigger picture of your project, and then to make pivots as they go is going to be limited. This is something that you need to understand when you're paying last money per hour or per project. They're not going to be able to figure out their own issues, and they're going to be pinging you much, much more often. So now let's do the same exact example. Let's assume, though, that this Indian Web developer same skill set. Maybe they have had more time working with Web development. Maybe they've had more Western clients. Maybe they live in a bigger city where they have access to better facilities. Maybe they have better English skills. Their price. Let's just say $20 an hour to $25 an hour Now that's probably on the higher end. But when you need to understand in that situation is that there's an implied association with that price because $20 to $25 is very expensive for India. So you have to assume what they mean is that don't only the good at Web development. They're good at projects and the good at freelancing in general there Probably a smart person, and they can probably figure out their issues as they arise. Now, a $10 an hour Web developer is not going to be expected to understand who your customers are. Why you're selling Why, You know, whatever your building is a good idea. They don't need to understand the politics behind maybe even the organization you're running and how it's gonna integrate with them. They don't need to understand all that. They probably won't even understand whether or not this is expensive for you. Whether or not you have lots of money to continue the project, they're only going to be focused on what exactly you tell them to dio. Now, a person who's $20 to $25 an hour probably is gonna understand a little bit more. They're gonna ask you more questions about who you selling Teoh. They might even come up with suggestions, but they might not understand as well as you dio. And most likely they won't understand as well as you do. But they'll understand it to a much greater degree than if you had something that was only $10 an hour. So what does this mean for you and your project. Well, previously, we had talked about what are kind of the prerequisites for outsourcing or contracting, and we talked a little bit about who the types of people are who outsource our contract. Andi, really, how it kind of changes depending on how it like how much extra peas you have with contracting. It really kind of depends on how many times obviously you've done this before, but also how integrated in the process you want to be. A lot of people who are outsourcing do not want to have to check in three times a week or have to do a significant amount of work on their side to say update requirements. Updated specifications, chiefs change instructions. Provide information to the freelancer. So really, you seem to think about how involved you want to be in your process if you really are OK with being there every step of the way, and I typically suggest that you should be as involved as possible in that case, then you should expect to pay mawr, and if you end up taking the cheaper option, who someone whose prices at the lower end of the range of what you'd expect. Well, then you're going to have your expectations pretty much broken because that person is going to be asking you a lot of questions. That person is going to be constantly coming back to you with information they need. There's a good chance they can screw up and build something and correctly you have to go back and fix it so technically they are cheaper. But if you calculate how much time you spend on it, it's not as much of a bargain as you would think. So take a second. Think about your project, think about your organization and think about how much time you're willing to spend on your project and whether or not you're comfortable with having a close kind of feedback loop with the person who is working on your project and then make a decision accordingly, based on price. So the main take away here is every area, every expertise. Every project's gonna have a range, and the more they charge, the more autonomous they're going to be the projects and ago a lot more smoothly because these people are gonna understand mawr of the project, and they're going to be able to make decisions on the fly that you're okay with. Where is someone who's cheaper is either not going to make that decision or they're probably going to make that decision wrong, which requires mawr effort from you. So don't obviously just go with the cheapest option. Go with the one that matches your expertise level and matches your commitment level. If you're someone has lost expertise and you're really committed to this project, then you can save a lot of money. But if you're in the middle, make sure that you work with someone who's a little bit more capable in a little bit more dynamic than, say, the cheapest option. 7. Country profiles and how to pick your ideal combination: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course. So in this lecture, we're gonna talk about what are the popular areas for outsourcing? What are the advantages? What are their disadvantages? What do you need to know about each area? And how do you determine whether or not you should pick one area versus the other? When you go ahead and list your project or start looking for contractors, you're probably gonna be amazed at how many different areas and how many different countries are represented in your project proposals. It's really quite a lot of different hot spots out there for outsourcing. But you as someone who's trying to get a project done, how do you kind of tell the difference between on advantage and a disadvantage with regards to an area? So the big question is, does the country that you outsource from Does it really matter well? And I have to say it's kind of a mixed question. It's not a clear yes or no, in some cases, absolutely not. In some cases, yes, I think there are clear advantages and disadvantages to picking a certain area or specific country. Unfortunately, when you asked really anybody else about outsourcing countries and what are their preferred areas. They often will lean on stereotypes. And stereotypes are not particularly helpful as there usually based off of whatever happened, that person's last experience and not completely representative of an area as a whole, but also based off of just weird cultural kind of miss numbers or misunderstandings. However, it is useful to understand that each area has its own s centrist cities, and each area kind of has their own unique things about them. That poor with prior knowledge, you could definitely help you kind of narrow down your list. So let me give you three criteria that you should actually use when determining whether or not you should be specific about an area. Now, these are three things that typically a lot of people don't think about, but they're really the only things that are relevant to me in my experience, when you are trying to narrow down your list and you're trying to think of geography, so the first thing you should think about is time zones. How important is it to you that you're able to communicate with the company or the freelancer that your contracting out to does it matter whether or not you can just easily pick up the phone or pick up Skype and immediately be able to communicate with them? Does it matter if they are working the same times that you are working? So there are a lot of different project types that can benefit or find it necessary to work at the same time as your outsource labor? If you're running a call center, you needed someone to do customer service for you. You probably need those people toe work at the same time that you're getting your customer service requests. Similarly, if you're using a virtual assistant, it's often the case that you need to interact with them frequently. Um, and you need them to work while you're working. Typically, when you have a project that requires a lot of back and forth, you're gonna wanna look at time zones and take that into consideration if you have a project also, that has a lot of changing requirements. So let's say you have a project, but you're constantly updating what needs to be done where you're constantly changing the directions from day to day. That might be the case that you need to be able to communicate with them faster, more effectively and more frequently, and thus you might actually care about where the company is located. So a second thing to take into consideration is, does your project have some sort of a cultural component to it? Now let me explain what exactly I mean by a cultural component. Now, if you're trying to build a project or, let's say a website or a mobile application, and that relies on something that is very specific toe one culture or one area such that someone outside that area would have a difficult time understanding that that is something you should take into consideration does your APP use a lot of phrases that are very localised? Does it use a lot of idiomatic phrases that might be confusing for someone who's not familiar with what you're talking about in those types of cases? It might be a problem when you explain things to your outsource team or freelancer because they might just not understand why you're building it or what exactly it's supposed to dio now all outsource freelancers and labourers firms. They're all very good at following directions, but what we're more concerned with is that they understand the project as a whole, and they understand the bigger questions because that's gonna allowed them to beam or effective in the long term. And that's gonna make it such that they are probably a better partner for a long period of time. If that is the case, then obviously you're going to start looking for countries that a little bit more se Westernized. If you're Western or say, if you like, live in an Asian country, you might want to look for a now outsourced team that can relate specifically to whatever your application or whatever culture your application deals with. So the last criteria that I would introduce is that you think about infrastructure requirements Now, what exactly do we mean by that? How important is it that, say, your freelancer or your outsource team is available every second of the day? So if you have a project that, for instance could go off line and I could create a serious problem for your business, and you might want to consider an area that has a better reputation for infrastructure and what I mean by infrastructure, I mean Internet speeds, I mean Internet availability. I mean electricity. I mean really kind of any issue that could get in between them and getting their your work done. This is specific to, for instance, people who are doing film projects or any project that deals with uploading lots of information. So if you're doing a film project, you might have to upload gigabytes and gigabytes of film. So if you use a country that has slow Internet speeds, that could actually be a deal breaker. So you might want to focus on areas that at least can handle large file uploads and transfers. Similarly, I mean, it could work the same way and say, like a website, if you have a website that deals with large file transfers, we built an application like that before and, you know, had we use, say, like a limited bandwidth connection, it really would have been impossible even to build or test it. But if you have a looser timeline or what it is that you're outsourcing is not crucial to the everyday operations of your business or your project, then you don't really need to be picky about the infrastructure requirements of where you source your team. So keep those three criteria in mind because that's what we use to determine whether or not there's an advantage or a disadvantage to a certain area. So with that, let's cover some of the bigger mawr popular areas that you're gonna run into. So right off the bat, the biggest one that your notice is South Asia and what I mean by South Asia is India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan. Those four right there are kind of in a lot of cases they'll end up being 60% of the bids that you get sometimes 70% of the bids you'll get now. Those areas are very prolific because outsourcing on BPO, which is business process outsourcing, makes of a very large portion of the economy's in those four countries, there's also a very strong cultural component in that area. People grow up knowing that jobs typically associated with outsourcing are usually good jobs, and so there's a much larger group of people that try to move into that space. The biggest portion off this is really India. India is probably the prototypical outsource country. When you think of outsourcing, you probably think of India. There, the country that gained traction with outsourcing long before all their big outsourcing hubs popped up. So let's try to evaluate South Asia based on those three criteria that I gave you. So first off time zones well, India, Bangladesh and that whole area typically will range at least the United States anywhere from 10 hours difference to 12 hours difference. So that's a pretty significant shift. Usually, if you're using the A M. P M clock, I like to think of it like switching it. You literally just flip the AM of the PM. So what that means for you is that typically, these India is a country or Bangladesh is a country. That's better if you're okay with them working on your project while you're asleep. It's better if you're Mawr kind of tuned towards meeting them. When they're mourning your night, they work, and then you wake up and cap off what they've done for the day. A lot of firms in India and in this general area they will adjust their schedule to match yours. But because of the way that the time zone shift works, it's it's never a complete match, usually just means that the more dedicated firms or freelancers can make sure that you have at least three or four hours of overlap. So you can, in most cases get half a day overlap with this area. But you're never gonna get full complete coverage. They're not gonna work the same 9 to 5 that you dio. So now, culturally, this is often debatable. But in my head, it's very clear. As far as Westernization goes, India is lagging behind the majority of the other outsource hubs. If you have ever travelled to India, it is wildly different than any other Western country in general. It is very hard for an Indian person to understand the same likes and predilections as, say, someone living in Western Europe or North America. So what does that mean? That means there typically not Great. If you're trying to pick something again, that has a very strong cultural component to it because that's something that they'll struggle to grasp. And you're always gonna be at a disadvantage with that. It's also worth noting that if you're an English speaker, hopefully how are you taking this course? India speaks a dialect of English, and that's one of the more common misunderstandings about the area. It's almost better if you're working with a freelancer or outsource firm that learned English a specific way. India has its own dialect, and what that means is that they have their own phrases, and they have their own way of saying things. So to a native English speaker from another country, they can often be very hard to understand. A lot of times will use phrases or concepts or ways of communicating that are very strange and foreign to you. You've probably already noticed at this point, if you have a project up on your taking pits that probably at least one Indian freelancer has called you dear. If you haven't already picked up on that, that's they use that as basically a common way of greeting you on, but least Ryan coming where I'm from. That's a term of intimacy, so that always just sounds incredibly strange to them. That's not strange at all. Now, the last criteria for India and South Asia is infrastructure now. Infrastructure is one of their weaker points terms of Internet speed. It really just kind of depends their Internet speeds in larger hubs like Bangalore or say new Delhi are modest. They're never going to reach Western standards, but it's a modest speed. So for basic Web development, mobile application, perfectly fine video production and editing, they might struggle outside of the hubs. Internet quality crashes considerably. The other part of infrastructure was electricity, and that's an issue that they run into constantly. Even in large areas. They will have outages Now. That's a problem when you have servers when you have storage. And you could have issues where you need on call workers now again. Of course, if you don't need any of that, you don't need someone who you can snap your fingers and they show up and fix it. Then don't worry about picking South Asia. So keep that in mind when you're thinking about this General Geographic area, so the next one worth discussing is Eastern Europe. Eastern Europe is probably the number two. I would say it's probably the second most represented in the bid list that you're gonna get for your project. Eastern Europe could honestly mean a whole range of countries, you know, Ukraine, Andi, Poland and Belarus. Andi, even like Hungary and Croatia, those are very common countries to get bids from those are countries that have very strong developer cultures. There's a very large portion of the country that is interested in computer science or tries to get jobs in computer science. Now in general, if I had to pick between two bids or the exact same one was in Eastern Europe, one was in India, typically a pick Eastern Europe that simply because of among three criteria we discussed before, they actually score quite a bit better. So in time zones, they're a little bit better. If you're in Europe, then they don't have a terrible time zone switch in a couple of hours ahead. United States. It's less than India, and India is typically 12. For us, they're usually more around eight or nine. Culturally, it could really range. I mean, a lot of Soviet bloc countries have a lot of differences with Westernized countries, but as a whole there much, much more Westernized than, say, South Asia. So that makes it a lot easier for them to understand. They're probably more familiar with things that you're familiar with. The probably catch on more references that you make to say popular applications or popular businesses in the country that you're from and then lasting infrastructure infrastructure is again considerably better. There are several countries that have higher Internet speeds than, say, even the United States. Romania is actually a great example of a country that's average Internet speed is almost up there with like even South Korea and Japan. So if you're trying to do large file transfers, if you're worried about whatever it is that you're outsourcing, needs high connection speeds, usually that's not a problem. It's a terrible way of generalizing, but in general role. If I would average out all of the countries that will kind of come together to build your building your bid base, they do have faster Internet. So those are the two biggest hubs. And honestly, if you stay within those two regions, you'll do perfectly fine. I'm gonna discuss to other areas briefly, and I'm just gonna highlight what exactly are the differences about those and why you would consider them so. One of them is Southeast Asia. In general, Southeast Asia is not a big hub for outsourcing. Thailand and Indonesia don't really make up a big portion of outsource projects or even outsourced firms. The Philippines, in general, have a much stronger call center culture and, in general, have better English speaking skills. Anecdotally, it's actually interesting how many American countries actually outsource their call centers to the Philippines, and it's specifically because so many people in the Philippines get English training and cultural training so that they can actually be passed off as American call center agents. So keep that in mind if you have a project that's very sensitive towards accents. If it's something where you need your outsource freelancer affirm to speak on the phone or make recorded messages than the Philippines Aaron Area to consider, The other thing that's very interesting is because of the call center culture. Ah, lot of people have what we could reverse schedules, reverse schedule, meaning that they actually sleep when North America sleeps and they're awake with North America is awake. They also dio similar schedule switches for your oppa's well. So if you have something like a virtual assistant task that could be the spot. That's probably the most ideal. So data entry tasks, virtual assistants Philippines could be a great spot for that developers, On the other hand, it's less developed, and you're gonna have to judge that pretty much on a case by case basis. Now the last area to discuss is Central and South America. Now I'm only highlighting central in South America because there time zones match almost perfectly with the United States and Canada. So if you have a project that it is crucial that you have matching time zones, it's crucial that, you know at a seconds notice you can communicate with your freelancer or with your outsourced firm, then consider Central and South America. They are not areas that are specifically well known for anything else. They don't have strong developer cultures. They don't have strong business process, outsourced cultures. Um, but specifically, if time zone is the most important thing to you, then look for countries like Argentina, Costa Rica anywhere. That's kind of in that area. So in general, guys, you really want to judge your bid or your proposal based off the merit itself. If you have specific requirements on your project, like, say, you need fast Internet feed, or say you need some type of cultural fluency or you need a reduced accent because you need a freelancer who can speak on the fly, these air things to take into consideration and apply those two. Now what you now know about some of the hot spots around the world for outsourcing in general. Personally, when I if I had to pick, I usually use Eastern Europe. India is great for certain things. Central America, South America, A fantastic for time zones If you're in North America and obviously the Philippines is great if you're trying to do data entry, virtual assistants or anything that involves the telephone. OK, guys, if you have any questions, I know a lot of these things air generalizations. So don't be up in arms about anything, I've said. But I'm trying to make kind of boil this down and distill this so that it's helpful to you . That's why I use those three criteria, because those are the only real three things that you should take into consideration their obvious exceptions in every single area. But I'm trying to give you a bit of a short cut when you go and after actually pick someone you're just kind of confused about what does it matter what country they're from? 8. Getting acquainted with Asana: Hey, guys, welcome back to the course, So in this lecture, we're gonna go over asana. Asana is a free and very, very, very popular project management told that a lot of startups use. I believe it was started by the co founder of Facebook. It's very light. It's very easy. It works on every single device you have. Now we're gonna cover how to get acquainted with it, what she features and kind of aspects of it should you be familiarized with. And then in the next lecture, we're gonna go over how you can use this for your actual situation and for your actual contractor kind of scenario. Now, asana is great for a lot of different things. It's personally my favorite project management tool. And it's what we use here it sprint kick. Okay, So without further ado, let's get into a sauna, start messing around, start getting used to it, and then we'll start talking about how you can make this work for you and your project and how you could make it dramatically increase the efficiency of your project. So let's go to the screen guest. All right, so let's get acquainted with a sauna now. So the way that Asana works is it kind of looks like any type of AH Web administration panel that you've ever kind of logged into looks kind of like a WordPress when you long into it. It's essentially a system of task list. Six. You can see right here. This is literally the first page you'll see once you create an account. It all uses lists to put everything together that's a little bit different than base camp. It's a little bit different than the other popular project management tools. And it's one of the reasons why we like a sauna so much because it allows you to list anything you're doing quite literally, anything in a linear fashion, Um, and make sure that you can itemize out every single thing and then move through them. So if you're not familiar with asana, literally, you just go to a sauna dot com. Um, go and create an account. It's quite literally, only two screens, and this is the first screen you will see. Ours is a little bit different because it has some projects in it on it has some data that I've already inserted before. Multiple counts But here's a look essentially like this. So the way that this works is right here on the left hand side. We have all the different sections of asana. So my tasks are all the a task that are assigned to you. Things that you are involved in your dashboard is the area where you can get project based some rings. Um and then these other sections right here just show all of the items that exist within their project management tool. Now, the simplest way of using asana is to simply just create a project and the court you create a project is down here so you could go down to projects and hit plus and we can call us whatever we want. Okay, Then you can choose privacy. So the way that this works is I can say it's open to sprint kicks. If I said this, anyone in our company could see this, so this would go to the master kind of a sauna. And if I said this to private, that wouldn't mean that I have to invite every single person to the project to see it so I could have people who are in this asana looking at some of the other projects but not able to view this project. So you would pick private If you use dishonor for multiple projects, they'll say you had some project that was completely unrelated to the other one, and you're keeping track of it in asana a lot of times. Also, people use this as a personal productivity tool. They list out all the tasks they need to get done today, um, or this week or this month. And they use that. And so you obviously wouldn't want to share that with the contractor or someone your outsourcing with. So, um, if that was the case, you don't pick private. Now if you have multiple projects where the people that you're working, what they're gonna bring into this work across different projects, which happens quite frequently, especially when you find someone that you really enjoy working with, and they have multiple skill sets which most developers or designers do. In that case, you can actually add them to multiple projects. And if you set this to open, they can actually jump across and see what's available in the other ones. Just for the purposes of this, I'm gonna show you what it looks like when you couldn't open project. And here we can put a description. Descriptions are helpful for you to remember what exactly this project is about or to give a snapshot. Because a lot of times you'll have lots and lots of projects, so it's very helpful. Keep it simple. Okay, so right here off the bat. This is our project. And it looks kind of like a legal pad. Almost. Um, As you can see, it's quite literally just a vertical view of what is essentially a task list. Now, the core of asana is you can literally just add a task. So they wanted to add a task. I would just click, and I would add a task. I could say, you know, create first screen of application. You know, depending on what you're using, you could do this in any way you want. That's how you add a task. If you want another task, you simply just hit enter and you can move all the way down. Now, within each individual task, there's a lot of different things you can dio. So right here you have the track box and that just means you market complete. Now, if I click this, it's gonna say that it's complete. It's gonna disappear. You can see the completed task by going to view task to Dio, and then you can go to recently completed tasks and will show up on today. Now it could also you also select yesterday. You also select 12 and three weeks. It'll show up in these three and this one, but not yesterday. Now the reason why this is helpful is because, as you are running a project and you have multiple people contributing to the project mobile people, adding tasked removing task, etcetera. It's really helpful to see you know when you log in first thing in the day. What happened yesterday? What got finished? What do I need to check? So what you typically will do is when you create a project, you'll go off and list all of the main overview points of what you need to get done. This would be a theoretical project, so we could say, you know, build first screen because they build for a screen and you know, you could say build second screen, so you literally can put whatever you think you need, um, in your project, this could be designed project. It could be really anything. I mean, you're going to use this for brainstorming. You can put ideas down. Um, now, after you've created a task, there's again several things you can do. You can check it as done. You can also assign this task to someone. Now the way that us do this is you simply just click it and you can put in the email or the name of the person you're signing it to. Now, when you do that, any person who's been assigned a task has that show up in their my task section. It also automatically keys them in to get push notifications. If they have the asana app, it also gives them email notifications, and it gives them tax notifications as due dates, air coming or as their assigned a task or as a tax. Their assigned is finished, so it's going to keep all of the relevant parties in each task notified. Now, the easiest way to add someone to your screen, they're the easiest way to add someone to a project is quite simply, just to go over here and say, Invite people here. You just put in the email address of whoever you're gonna work with. So say it's freelancer freelance dot com, and I would hit invite, and that would send them an invitation for them to sign up and get into this project page where they could now see everything. So it's very, very easy to onboard someone. And that's why he's also suggest using asana to manage your projects because it's very easy to get a contractor or an outsourced freelancer into this. Now, convincing someone to use a project management tool might have some resistance upfront. You might have some developers or designers be resistant to the idea, and the reason why they might be resistant to using a project management tool like this is because for one, a lot of them have their own processes by which they create their own projects. Now that the reason is, a lot of them don't want to feel like they're being monitored and feel like they have toe and feel as if the person who they're working with can see their progress on a day to day basis. And here's the thing you know there is some truth to that as a freelancer. Freelancers do get very comfortable in the way that they work. I personally always like using this with all of our contractors or outsource teams. And the reason wise, because it's a great way of testing to see whether or not they're good freelancer or contractor. If they really don't want to use an online project management tool, then it's a chance that this is probably not a good person to work with. You really want to work with people who are adaptable and people are open to change. You want to work with people who value things like transparency and value, things like being able to communicate effectively. Now if they insist on using, say, like an e lance page or using email to monitor your project progress. They're basically saying, I prefer to keep you in the dark. Um and they think that the hassle of updating you more often and very easy to use an intuitive way, um is more valuable than actually being able tell what's going on in the project and for you to know whether or not your money is being spent correctly. So I like it because you can quite literally just add in their email and invite them. All that means is that you need to have their email address. So if you hired someone off up work, you hired someone off of really anywhere, all you need is their email. You can add them and they're in. And now all of a sudden we can start adding tasks, assigning it to that person. Um and then we can start working and see now that I've added someone right here, it's gonna wait till they confirm. And once they confirm and sign up, then all of a sudden they'll have more functionality. Usually the color of their icon changes. But I can still assign them tasks. So I could say this one is now assigned to you. And you can see now that this freelancer freelancer is assigned to this task. Okay, so now on the right side of the pain. This is where we get the drill down on each individual task on the individual task. What we can do is we can change the project its end. We can add a description of each interval task. This is where you know we could take a high level description and then get into the details . But most importantly, now you have a thread where you can have a threat and describe what's happening with this task. What exactly do you mean? Do your requirements changed? You having more information to add the other person can also respond with where they are in the process. They could respond with questions directly to this task. And you can answer this an efficient way. And as long as you're added to this task, you will get notified every time that happens. Now imagine doing that. Their email. If you told them I want install this widget, my WordPress Um and you didn't give them all of the information they would need, Or maybe they go in there and something's different. Something in the WordPress code has changed. The widget has changes, documentation. The functionality is different on, and also there are other things that are happening in the project, so they just send you one big bulk email. Do they send one big project update and e lance or up work or freelancer? That's just very inefficient. It's very inefficient in terms of organization, in terms of speed in this case, as they're quite literally responding to something, I can get the information from them and I can respond specifically to that task. That is one of the bigger problems with project management, especially around Web and mobile projects. You don't always know exactly what a developer a designer is talking about on this allows you to literally drill down on whatever it is and typically on you build tasks. They're gonna be much, much more specific than this. But I'm gonna show you how you can make this a little bit Mawr sensical in just a second. 9. Going further with Asana: So here is where you write comments and I could put any type of comment I wanted on here. I could say, You know, I have new design tweaks for you to integrate, and I can comment like that. Okay, So now the person who is the theoretical freelancer would see this almost immediately. Um, what I can also do, which is extremely helpful. I can just go up here and add attachments so I can attach from computer Dropbox, Google Drive. So say, this person is building a screen and I just changed and tweaked its very small design on it , and I want them to change that. All I have to do is go up here and attached from a computer, and it will import it into this. So quite literally, there's no more of this. Hey, where is the design that we need? Missing the wrong? I don't have the right version of the design. You don't have to send them this big, convoluted folder full of designs. You can literally just put it on each individual task. And one way of doing this is say, if you wanted to know if you're working with a developer and you want him to build one big screen. So I say, like build for a screen. You would put this task up immediately. Go over here, give the drill down. Information specifically what you mean any comments? You have any directives? You have an attached to the designs so the person comes up, sees what they need to start working on first and then grabs the designs, downloads them and starts on it. So that's a great way of dealing with version tracking and specifically finding designs. Okay, so there's little bit other functionality, or here you can set a due date. And this is very, very helpful when you're working with a freelancer or contractor, because a lot of times you're gonna be inclined not to give them deadlines. And that's generally not a great idea. It's always a good idea to give them a deadline because it will allow them to prioritize what exactly is most important and allow them to at least give you some type of idea of how quickly they're working and when it's going to be done. And the way that I suggest doing this, especially with contract or outsourced labor, is you don't set a due date yourself. That doesn't really make sense. Even if you are technical, even if you are very ingrained in the process and you know exactly how long it will take to build the second screen, it's not worth it for you to do that. That just builds resentment, and it's inevitably going to be incorrect. You want them to set the due date, and then you can have final say about whether or not you think it's gonna take too long and you can have that discussion with them. But it makes more sense for them to reasonably give you a due date. If they think it's gonna take them two days, they should do that. If they think it's gonna take them three days, they should do that. Don't I always suggest is don't try to shove it down their throat and make them, Ah, make them accept a due date that you arbitrarily made up in your head. So right here and then I can say when I want it to be done here today. Yogis He can't say in the past, Um, but, you know, let's say it's due in five days, so I could say the 29th. OK, I could even be specific. Like, say, I have AH product launch or email going out. It's going at 3 p.m. So I need to have this done and uploaded at 2 p.m. It also said it to a recurring task. Um, and I can also, you know, two things like liking it. That's helpful when you're in large organizations because people can like things. Um, it's helpful when you add start adding things like ideas in here, and then people can say and like it, and then you can go up here and sort by popularity. Okay, now, now that you've said a due date on one of your task, what you can then do is go and look at your calendar for your project on this is kind of cool. What it will do is it will automatically populate your task in a calendar. So I'm literally looking at this and today's Monday I could look at Monday and say, Oh, by tomorrow, I have I expected this section to be done or this feature to be done or this bug to be fixed. Um, and I can see Oh, on the 29th. This one is specifically going to be uploaded at 2 p.m. I'm not familiar with it or not. Off topic had. No, this isn't. Just click it and go directly to it. And then right there, I can just see what exactly it is. And typically with your freelancer, Your contractor, you have a long thread of you know what's going on? Um, Explanations, conversations, etcetera, etcetera. So very, very helpful. Big projects. This will fill it very quickly. This is also very helpful to you can go directly to attachments. Now, if I goto attachments, what's gonna happen is it's gonna take every single attachment that air in any of those threads, any of those tasks and it's gonna put it here. So it's gonna be a big pile of all of the assets, all of the files, all of the instructions you needed for the task. And that's very, very helpful. If you're just looking specifically for a file, you don't need to know what threat it was posted in. You can always just go to this pile right here. Okay. One of the other things that you it's very important, understand? I do. This is these air individual tasks, but they don't have to be tasks I can turn these into sections of. I want Teoh. Okay, so now if I wanted one of these two instead be a, um, section, as opposed to a task I could just literally put a colon at the end of it. You know, I put a colon that turned it into a section, as opposed to a task. Now, what I want to do sections, sections make a lot more sense because I can build this out. Say, my application is five screens I could build, you know, first screen, and then we could say build second screen. Um, and we could say build third screen like that. We go all the way down to five. You also create them by going like this and just going new section right here. And I'll add one. Um, Now, if I wanted to add a task underneath this, all I have to do is sit enter and there you go. Now I have a task. Now I could get much more granular with it. I can now say specifically what needs to be happening in the first screen. So first green has the Facebook log in. I could say Facebook log in needs to be installed on. Do you know, you could say logo must be displayed, etcetera, etcetera. So what this allows us to dio is branch the mountainous sections, breakdown the sections in an individual pieces and then allow them to update you as individual things get finished and you'll have a real time kind of trail of what's happening as they go and they click through them. Um, and you see, kind of from a project standpoint, how quickly your application or your project or whatever it is you're working on, our building gets filled up. And now, as I am doing this Aiken again, go back and look at all the complete tasks there were. The more interesting things you can do then is go to your project and just double tap it, and it will actually give you a project overview over here, right here, where it says, Ah, your progress as tasks, they're being added as tasks will remain. So at the very beginning, we might add, say, 100 different things. And then right over here as we start knocking them off. We can see over time how quickly we are either accelerating in our project completion or slowing town. That's really helpful. To see if you have a freelancer is just knocking out task, knocking out tests and then all of a sudden maybe has another project pop operate. It's distracted, and then you see it start to plateau or drop, and all of a sudden that's a good way of telling that they've lost enthusiasm or lost interest or lost time. You can also use status is right here. Um, here you can just post a status. This is helpful if you have multiple people working on a project, and that is not uncommon. If I had multiple people, I could just say freelancer two at Gmail. I feel bad forever has Freelancer two at Gmail is about to get emailed, but I could also add them into this project. Um, and then all of a sudden, you know, I can add statuses, and anytime I add a status, they'll get notified of it. So I could say, um, you know, project going well, I could also say, Um ah, I can also say, you know the mobile application has crashed. Nothing works S O s. Okay, set that status. Everyone gets notified. Um, so you set that status? It goes to pretty much everyone. When you need to do around here is notify people and then add them so we could add that. And at that. And then any time I push a status, it will quite literally just push that message to everyone on their phones. Will get a push. Notification from the application. Very helpful. This is something you can use when your applications live or whatever it is. Um, and you need immediate feedback or immediate fixes. Very, very helpful. Anything else that we really need to cover is the inbox. Um and you can see up here in the in box. Really? All this is is you know, as you have threads and every of multiple projects, as people message, you are update threads. It's gonna populate in here. And as you get them populated, you can say that you've read them and they disappear. So this is typically something you can always check just to see what exactly you need to put your attention towards If you're not, Sonny doesn't to check their email all the time. Okay, so we've covered pretty much everything you need to know to get acquainted with asana. Very, very simple. It's all task based, Um It has a very powerful notification system. Very easy to integrate your freelancers or contractors into your projects. Makes it such that there's really no excuse for them not to join it. And overall, a very easy way to keep track of what you're doing and to keep track of where your project is. Now that you're acquainted, we can move on, and I can show you how we use asana when we're building out projects. And what's a easy kind of template for setting up asana projects and for how you handle the actual workflow with a freelancer? 10. Making Asana work for your project: All right, So let's talk about integrating this into your project. The easiest way of doing that kind of like I explained previously in the last lecture is to quite literally get the email address of your contractor or your freelancer. Whatever, um, and immediately invite them in and then add them to your project. You have a private project. What you can do is you can physically add them in so I can add project members. This is public of it make private works the same exact way you to do that and then add them in the way that I was suggests setting this up, um, is that you divide out your kind of work area into three different sections and the first section what I usually dio is, and I don't create this as a template before, even on board a contractor. So I'll take the first section and I'll call it Section one or build tasks or just tasks or whatever it is that you're actually doing. And I'll make that the first section okay, and then right over here, I'd give a description because a lot of people are not immediately aware of how asana works . Some people have used it. Some people haven't. So people are used to base camp, Um, or something else. So what I do is I put up here and I say here, we're going Teoh, list out all of our all of our tasks. Okay? And then what you are essentially going to do is ask them to list out all of the tasks that are going to be involved in your project. Now, I can't obviously make a template that's gonna fit every single project. So you just have to think about your project with the mobile application. Um, you Then I'm gonna have to ask them List out every single section as they see it. Usually these are gonna be user centric. Now, what I mean by user centric, they're not going to say OK, finished the database or have this one section upload code to this other section And make that a task. They're going to the tasks user centric. So what a user sees this screen will be done. This button will be done. This function this feature will be done. Um, because as they update it, something visually should be happening to someone who's using your application or using your product. Um, that's the easiest way of doing this. Especially for you, the project manager. If you're nontechnical, even if you are technical, you're not gonna be so integrated into this project that you're gonna know exactly what's going on in the back end. And so you're not gonna really be able to tell what's up and what's down if they try to use , um esoteric, kind of really confusing jargon. I was explaining back and functions in the second section. What I typically like to do, um, is set off a section. Why put additional tasks and I'll usually call this one just additional tasks, uh, even task and features. Okay. Okay, Now what? I mean by this section right here. What I mean is gonna remove this due date. Sorry about that. And so what I mean by this now in additional task and featured I typically do is I list out any additional task that were not included on the project or the task Lyski previously agreed on. Now, if you guys got someone off of the lancer owed, ask or wherever, then you agreed to some kind of a work specifications. Actually, he followed the previous section or we made work specifications. They're gonna follow that. This is the section where you add anything. That's an additional to that. As they're building and out, you might see additional things you want or additional task that you didn't anticipate needing. That's where you're gonna list these out here and again because of Asano, the way they do threads, this is a fantastic way of doing it. So I could say, um, you know, maybe I wanted Teoh at a feature. Maybe I said, like I wanted to add a notification feature so I could say, Ah, notification feature to ex section. OK, obviously it doesn't really make sense because we don't project we're talking about. But what we can do over here, then, as I could give a drill down description of what exactly? I mean, is it like a email notification of push notification, attacks, notification? Who was getting message? Who clicks it? Where is the display? Etcetera, etcetera. And then right here you can have a discussion and going down the thread with the person you're working with until they get to the point where they understand what exactly it is, and they can give you an estimate now. Previously we talked about whether or not you work on Project Price or whether don't you work on our way. Price of its hourly will give you an estimate in terms of hours of its project. Price will give you an estimate based off of just that that one section or they might bundle sections together if you use our technique, which is that we use a hybrid where we do day rates, half day rates and things like that. Um then they'll give you an estimate like that. And you've clearly set the tone previous today so they'll know exactly what type of estimate you like to get. And they'll put it down here and you can ask them. Estimate it also like to put that up in description. Estimate out this section. You know, here's the description. Please give me an estimate or ask any questions. Now the third section I like to create is just bugs. Honestly, it's it's literally just an ongoing section where I list out issues as they happen. Now, when you first start, you're not gonna have anything built. You're not gonna have any bugs. But as they start building out tasks and we start clicking through them, you will start noticing them as you test it. You know something doesn't low correctly. Something looks wrong. This button is broken. Something is awry. Something maybe they didn't follow the specifications correctly. Maybe they didn't understand the project perfectly. This is where I start listing off sections down here. Now, this is helpful because this task this section will start to be very large. And as it starts to whittle down, this section will grow also. What? I think our best practices for using this section. Um, using a bug section is Teoh only list out General bugs, General. Meaning something some bigger picture issue is happening. This whole section just looks off. Um, this section is going to the wrong page, etcetera, etcetera. Now, if you want to leave bug feedback for a specific task, what you actually do is say we had a task and say this task was to, um, generate email, um, based off user information and pre populate it prior pre populated. Okay, So that was our task and say they built that and they checked it and say you were looking at the completed list. What you could do is you could go in here and add what's called a sub task. So you could do is at a sub task. And this is a useful way of adding bugs. Um, if but they're only helpful if you can assume that this bug is only part of this. Okay, um, so if that email was popular and correctly, I could say, you know, um generated email has we'll just put some, like jargon e code at the beginning of email. And then if you saw another one, we could say that generated ive hail. You know, whatever the actual bug is doesn't work on, You know, Apple Mail or something like that. Whatever it is, you can individually list them out, have a conversation down here, and as they fix them, they can click this through. Now that's one way of doing it. And that's helpful if you have a specific problem with a specific function and that bug is Onley related to this Now, if you had a bug that you don't really know it's related to or it could involve multiple task, it's actually a problem putting it on here because of the freelancer Might miss it. Um, or they potentially. Just if they wanted to find it, they wouldn't be able to find it. Granted, we do have a search bar up here so you can search for things. Um, but maybe they didn't know exactly what you called it. So if that's the case, I like to put them down here. So, like bigger bugs. If I want to say, like, there's a large section that doesn't work say, you know the photo capture tool in my mobile application? Um, it's crashing in different sections, like or I'd say, like the it's it's low. Um, chances are up here. We wouldn't just have created photo capture. We would have separate sections. So integrating the camera on Did you have a section that you know and says, for instance, like installing the actual layout of where the camera buttons are where the flash buttons are refusing filters. You don't as a section as a separate one. So it's a more generalized bug. We can put it down here. It's up to you how you do it personally. Um, I like to use these. I like to just list my bugs list in a massive list, because once that person's done with their individual task or the entire task list, then they just immediately move here and just start knocking them out. Um, and as you start playing with it, you can literally just have this open as a Tabas. You're playing with your project or whatever it is, and you just start listing out bugs. We do have a section on bug hunting. That's something that's very helpful to go back and re watch. Watch if you skipped it to just to talk about where are the most common areas to get bugs? Will hair? Ah, har um, areas. People don't think to look for to find bugs what tools you used to find them. You don't need to be a Web specialist or a mobile application specialist to find bugs literally. Anybody with a mouse and fingers can find bugs and again, and with any project, they're always going to be. Bugs. Don't obviously judge your contractor, your freelancer based off of that, that is just something that is, ah, reality of Web projects. OK, so I think that is kind of the ideal ah, way of creating your first project. I do suggest if you do have design assets or wire frames, remember you made wire frames to go in and load them into, like, say, the section over here, because it will show up in the attachments that you can move them to individual tasks as you have the freelancer populate them. I talked about that previously in the last lecture. That's also very important, right? You don't want to dictate who builds out the task list. You want the other person to do it, and then you can kind of have the editorial review, look at it and say, No, that doesn't make sense. Um, no, that takes too long or no, I want this to be in a different hierarchy. I want you to work on this section first because I think I need to use that sooner or show this off sooner, um or whatever. But if you build it out like this and guys feel free to just to copy this, this is the most effective template we've used. Um, Teoh, just build out as much as you can. Make sure you have all your design assets or wire frames in it. Make sure you have descriptions. Um, make sure you've listed out anything that you can think of that you wanted to add. If you have questions right off the bat, you can create a little section and at a question and have them edit it. Make sure that you get them to pick the due dates. Don't be sticklers on that. That can actually kind of kill a project. But make sure that they are using some form of loose, um, due dates. Now, if you're running a big project or a project that has a large budget and you're paying a premium for people, then it might be okay for you to set strict deadlines for each individual task. But just in our experience is easier to be loose. Um, you know it also, if you if you're using an agile system, you can build these out instead of saying build tasks, you can say sprint one sprint to sprint three sprint four. Take suggestions from the people that you work with. Honestly, we've had people say day one day, two day, three day four things like that that breaks this system just a little bit, but it doesn't really matter. Whatever they're comfortable with, what did they understand? The entire point of this is to be able to track your progress and create transparency. Also, to be able to kind of put a laser focus on what exactly you're talking about, what exactly they're talking about, what, exactly of issues with which is one of the biggest problems that we have in general with project management for Web and mobile projects. One other thing worth noting is that as you do this, um, it's worthwhile that you keep logs of what's happening in asana, builds logs for you that you can export. That's very helpful. If you are hiring someone off of the lance or up work or freelancer, they have their own contract system, so it's helpful. Do occasionally take those logs and upload them there. If you do choose to use those companies to control your payment methods, which a lot of people are doing, smaller projects will dio um, it's a good idea to keep logs of your progress of your questions of what the application looks like through its individual stages. Always if you have the option of having mawr documentation. Verses, less documentation. Always pick mawr documentation that's gonna help you for there is ever a conflict in the future. And if you are using those payment systems, three lancer are those other platforms. They get to be the final arbiter of who gets the money who air, who made an error, who screwed up, um, or who made the mistake. So make sure that you're not in a situation where there's no documentation of their work on their system, but there's only documentation over here. Make sure that you do cross over occasionally. Okay, so that pretty much covers a sauna. Guys, it's free. Sign up for it. It's great if you have any other suggestions for tools that you want me to cover. Post in the group discussion. This is the one that I like because it covers pretty much everything, and it's free and it's fast and it's multi platform. So see you guys next lecture 11. Class project: Hey, guys. So I just wanted to go over the project for this class. It's pretty simple. All I want you to do is go down on the page down the class Project Click Class project, and I have a big section written out for everything you need to know to complete it. So the idea behind this one is We've talked about finding the right contractor that is buying far the most important part of this process. If you pick the wrong contractor, be used all the right tools, you're still gonna end up with a bad outcome. So picking the right contractor is the most important. So the idea behind this project is that you are going to pick an idea that you have. That's totally generic. You could even find an idea on up work or freelancer that somebody else's doesn't really matter just anything, maybe a website to be a task you need to get done. It could be building a physical product. It could be a mobile app. It doesn't really matter anything on. And then I want you to go onto up work and search for a contractor that you think would actually match this when you find one that I want you to answer some basic questions along with it. So down here these are the questions that we want to cover. So in one or two sentences, just tell me what your project is in really quickly. You can also this too. What outsourcing zone do you think would match this? Now, if you need to remember what criteria go into this? Go back to the lecture called Country Profiles or we go over geographical zones. Um, firm or freelancer. That's another one you need to pick. Whether or not a firm or freelancer is better for this again. If you forgot this one, we have ah, lecture called firm or freelancer. What technology experience did they have to complete this project? That's kind of up to you to figure out it's really not hard to figure out. And if you don't know, you could just say you don't know. But it really just takes some Google searching. I'll give you a hint. If you're making a nyo s application, then you probably need someone who knows how to code and swift. It's really easy. Just go to Google and say what does it take to make X or learn X and then it'll tell you so there's really no wrong answer to this. I just want o wanna make it so that you guys have toe look this stuff up and figure out what exactly is gonna go into your project so you don't know picking the wrong person. Last thing is, once you do find that person, let's just submit a girl or a screenshot of the profile. Do what you do. This is It's really pretty simple. Let's just copy and paste this and go up to start your project. And here you can put whatever you want. You could just paste it here and then just answer the questions right below it. You can also just do this in a word pad and take a screenshot or whatever is easiest. You could even do this in audio note to give you an idea of how you would complete this goto up work dot com or freelancer dot com really doesn't matter. You can pick which one you want. You can sign up right here, and if you don't want to sign up, we also have an account that's set up for you. You just gotta log in. And this is the account name that you can use Marlon Eriks at gmail dot com. This is the password, which is skill share. It's all written in the description of the class project. So you can't really miss it after you could do this screen. All you want to do is go up here to freelancers, and then once you get the screen, you're gonna find freelancers, okay? And then we're going to screen here. So after you thought about what goes into your project, that's how you determine what you need here. So if we're gonna do an IOS application, we would probably pick mobile development. You can also do all web and mobile, but it's better to be more specific. So we got a mobile development, okay? And from here, I would just read through some people. You need to spend a ton of time doing this, and I try to find someone that matches the criteria that I determined before. So let's say that I decided someone doesn't need a ton of experience. I could do any experience entry. Now it's in a sort for that now. If I decided on a geographical zone and I wanted to just filter by that I could go down here and go toe location. So maybe I wanted to do in the X. I'm trying to stay cheap, so I'd probably go to South Asia. You can actually go country, country if you want. Now, if you want to do firm are freelancer, go to more options and scroll down to the bottom. You're actually hit advanced options That's gonna toggle open some more options on bright down. Here you go, freelancer type, and you get to choose independent or agency freelancers. And so I might go with an independent because I want to save money. Okay, There you go. So now we have a curated list. Find somebody who you think is going to be a winner. Doesn't really matter if you pick the wrong person. This is just an exercise. Once you get it posted in the project. Okay? Looking forward to your guys Plast class projects. I will post as soon as you put them in there and we can talk about it 12. Keep the learning going: Hey, guys, I just wanted to say thank you for taking this class, and I hope you learned something. I hope what I said made sense and I was clear. If you have any questions, any concerns, just posting the group discussion all respond to you. You could even send me a direct message if you want to. I want to give you a quick word of how you could take the skills that we learned in this class and how to bring it to the next level. Learn some other related skills. So in this class we learned what skills and techniques we need to work specifically with outsource labor. We also learned kind of one of the eccentricities, one of the issues facing hiring someone that's outside of your country versus inside of your country. Now there other classes I have on skill share if you want to take this learning and keep going with it, and I think they're directly relevant, one I'd suggest is called Get the best price for your project. That one. We go over specific skills for lowering the overall project cost. For any project you worked with outsource laborers or freelance labor is that our in country, everybody wants to save money. So in that when I try to give you some of the skills and expertise I have developed over the last decade on just getting the price down for the most part, the other one, I suggest, is building documentation for your project. The reason why I suggest that one is because the biggest problem with outsourcing is the communication barrier. And also, when you're communicating with, say, creative or a developer, there's already communication barrier that already exists. So if you learn how to build professional documentation that can bridge the gap between what you're trying to say and what they understand, I think that's really crucial to getting good at this. Okay, if you want to go further with your skills, check those out. Otherwise, again, thank you for taking the course.