It’s no secret that freelancing is on the rise, which is a fantastic opportunity for organizations of all sizes to capitalize on this flexible, global workforce.
But the reality for many companies is that they don’t have the systems in place to pay a large network of international freelancers.
Relying on existing manual processes, or using platforms that aren’t tailored specifically for freelancer management can cause huge headaches for accounts payable departments.
And on the flipside – missed and delayed payments can cause significant problems for freelancers who have bills to pay and families to care for. These inefficiencies can cause companies to lose their best talent to competitors who have more robust and reliable payment systems in place.
If you’re looking to grow your network of independent contractors – here’s how to modernize your accounts payable process to ensure you retain your best talent.
Common issues when it comes to paying global freelancers
Freelancers now comprise more than a third of workers in the United States, and this is projected to reach 50.9% of the workforce by 2027. This means many of the world’s most talented writers, consultants, designers, and SMEs will be working in a freelance capacity.
Your freelance talent pool is career savvy – and they know they have many options available to them to work online. Switching to a competitor might be as simple as sending an email – so having systems in place to pay freelancers on time and increase their loyalty will become increasingly important to your business.
Here are some of the most common problems businesses and contractors face when it comes to managing an international payroll:
- Payment delays – your contractors rely on getting paid when you say you will, so they can budget for bills, mortgages, and other important outgoings. If you’re paying with outdated methods like checks, or your payment providers aren’t reliable, this can cause significant problems for your contractors.
- Collecting bank details – this can be a time-consuming process, and cause delays in payments for your freelancers. Ensuring you have the correct bank details stored in a centralized place that’s easy for your accounts payable department to access is crucial.
- Human error – entering the wrong information on either your side or your freelancer’s side can cause huge problems with missing payments if so much as one bank digit is submitted incorrectly
- FX charges – bank transfer solutions such as PayPal and wire transfers can mean significant fees come out of your freelancers’ pay, and cause unexpected loss of income for them
If you’re experiencing any of these challenges with your current payment processes, it might be time to think about changing up the way you manage your global freelancers so you avoid losing your best talent.
One of our current customers moved to Worksuite from another freelancer management system for this very reason:
Our payments were not consistently on time, and a few times we got 24 hours notice that payments were going to be seriously delayed. So we ended up losing one freelancer who was really good”Christine Nielsen, Resource Manager, Vested
5 key benefits of using Worksuite Pay
Let’s take a look at the benefits of using Worksuite Pay, and how our automated processes can help you overcome payment challenges and keep your freelancers happy.
1. Global Payouts
Worksuite enables you to send payments to 190 countries, and in 120 currencies. These are automatically managed by Worksuite, and we’re constantly adding new features like RTP.
RTP leverages real-time bidding across more than 20 liquidity and FX providers to get the absolute best rate. This is a huge advantage for organizations (and freelancers) in that your talent can accept payouts into almost any bank account or currency they choose – and your accounts payable team doesn’t have to do anything at their end. It’s all handled automatically. In addition, there’s no accounting for FX gain or loss, as they fund in a single currency of their choice.
Many freelancers who work in a specific country might choose to receive their funds in other currencies, as they may be traveling, or it might make financial sense for them to receive their pay in currencies other than their own. Offering modern, flexible payment options like this to your talent pool can be a huge advantage when you’re thinking about retention.
2. Enhanced Visibility
The Worksuite platform gives freelancers near real-time visibility into the progress of every payment, so they’re never scratching their heads and wondering when their money will come through.
This saves time and reduces constant payment-related emails for your AMs, PMs, and accounts payable teams.
3. Concierge Service
Once payments are approved and scheduled in the Worksuite platform, you get to “let go” of the payments and any issues related to payments.
For example, if a freelancer enters in the wrong bank details and their payment gets rejected – Worksuite manages this on your behalf. And in most cases – our customers never even realize there was a payment issue.
This reduces the significant administrative burden for your customer teams, and increases the freelancer satisfaction of working for you.
As we mentioned above, providing seamless payments is crucial in today’s market. Who freelancers choose to work with typically revolves around who is simpler to work with, and who can pay promptly and reliably.
4. Simplified Accounting Workflow
Instead of having to record every single cost at a line item level for invoicing, your accounts payable team can simply register a single monthly line-item cost in their GL, while at the same time still having detailed line-item data for business reporting.
This can drastically reduce the administrative load for your teams, plus it takes away significant work from accounts payable teams in terms of having to manage:
- Onboarding of freelancers/vendors, and updating of the bank/payment details
- Payment (and supporting issues with payments) for each vendor, and GDPR and other data security requirements around collecting this information
Worksuite also validates all bank details against a database of more than 2,000 rules at a country, locale, and in some cases, bank level to ensure the correct information is being collected at all times.
5. Risk Reduction
Worksuite performs real-time and follow-up compliance for every single payment that is sent.
Our system performs both KYC (Know Your Customer) and AML (Anti-Money Laundering) checks for every vendor, and every payment made.
These are globally and federally mandated checks that must be performed for companies sending payments to vendors, to ensure they stay compliant with global money transfer rules.
All of your risk is removed when you use Worksuite Pay. We take on this responsibility for you, and also the work of following up directly with your talent if any ‘flags’ are raised.
We then gather additional information in order to ensure compliance is fully addressed. If you’re working with global freelancers and not doing this in your organization, you’re putting your business at risk.
How using Worksuite Pay can help streamline your payment workflow
Worksuite partners with over 350,000 organizations to streamline every aspect of their freelancer management – ensuring happy and loyal independent contractors.
Customers that work with us as their technology partners experience significant time savings in their payment processes – as much of the work that managers and accounting teams are responsible for becomes streamlined and automated within customizable workflows that can be set up for your specific use cases.
This includes things such as:
- Collecting bank details and ensuring they’re correct
- Invoicing and approval management
- Global payment
- Individual and bulk payments
- Payment scheduling
- Supporting issues for payments
- Compliance and risk reduction
- 1099 and W9 form generation
- IRS e-filing
Our goal at Worksuite is to help provide a frictionless experience for both you and your contractors – ensuring that your teams save time, your freelancers love working with you, and that you create long term relationships with your best talent.
But don’t just take it from us – here’s what a few of our customers say about using Worksuite:
Before Worksuite, we needed to do all the payments manually; with Worksuite, it’s super smooth, super quick, and takes about three hours now – whereas it used to take about three days”Anisha Suterwala, Strategic Ops, BetterUp
Worksuite is the future. You can manage your own work database, your payment solutions, and your [contractor] ratings all in one spot”Cyon Williams, Senior Director of Operations, FloSports
If you’ve got a large freelance workforce, it will absolutely transform how you engage with them. And it will make your freelancers feel that they are a valued part of the workforce, because you can communicate with them easily.”Elaine Morris, Head of Production, ITN