Hiring freelancers can be difficult if you don’t know how to screen and select the best candidates. If you have poorly-qualified or unreliable freelancers, you could end up losing money and time on projects that don’t get completed as well as missed opportunities to build your business and gain exposure in your niche market. The first step to making sure this doesn’t happen to you is knowing what qualities to look for in a worthy freelancer – no matter what kind of work you need done. Here are 10 characteristics of the very best freelancers out there

1) They're punctual

It's important that the freelancer is on time and will make deadlines. If they're not, they're not worth your time. Punctuality shows that the freelancers are dedicated to their work and you can trust them to be reliable when you need them to be.

2) They deliver quality work

If you're looking for someone to do some work for you, make sure that they have experience. When looking at their portfolio, see if the work is quality and up to date. You want someone who understands your needs and can provide what you're looking for.

3) They're responsive

One of the most important things to take into account when looking for freelancers is how quickly they respond to your messages. At the same time, you should be conscious about how often you contact them. Asking for frequent updates on projects can feel like a burden and will make it seem like you're not trusting their abilities.

4) They're easy to work with

You'll want to find someone who is easy to work with. You should be able to feel comfortable exchanging ideas and asking questions while you work together. The freelancer should also have an eye for detail, which will help avoid any miscommunications or mistakes. Finally, the freelancer should be reliable and available when needed.

5) They have a positive attitude

A positive attitude is one of the most important characteristics in any project. It will help you get through the low points, and it will make your projects more enjoyable for you and your client. A positive attitude shows that you are excited to be part of the process and eager to work on new tasks. It means that you want to take initiative with problem-solving rather than waiting for someone else to tell you what needs to be done next.

6) They're professional

Providing a professional service is the number one characteristic of an excellent freelancer. It's their first and most important duty to their clients. One way to make sure your freelancers are up to snuff is by asking them for examples of past work they've done. If they're not able to show you, that's always a red flag.

7) They're flexible

It's important to have some wiggle room in your budget and to be willing to negotiate. A freelancer who is flexible will be able to work with you on the terms of the project. They may be able to offer you a discount, they may be willing to do some work on spec (which means they get paid when they deliver), or they might just let you know what their hourly rate is instead of charging by the project.

8) They're organized

One thing that can make or break any project is organization. It's important to think about how the project will be executed so you know when to start and what needs to be done first. Most importantly, it's key to have a plan for completion. Once you have your plan in place, it's time to write out your milestones - which are the steps that need to happen for the project to be finished on time.

9) They take direction well

A freelancer that takes direction well will be able to work with you to make sure the project is executed exactly how you envision. If they are not willing to take your input and make changes, they may not be the right fit for your project.

10) They're always learning

A worthy freelancer is always learning. They're taking on new skills, reading up on the latest trends, and staying up to date with the latest technologies. When it comes to freelancing, there's no point in being complacent. A worthy freelancer will never stop growing.