In today’s digital age where online platforms have allowed businesses to reach out and communicate with others at the simple click of a button, outsourcing has become an effective model for profitable business operations. Integrating third parties into ordinary business operations has long been proven to be a successful competitive strategy, while also minimising costs and improving overall business focus.
In order to help with their outsourcing needs, there are a number of Australian platforms which help businesses find freelancers and independent contractors available to contribute to their business operations. In this blog, we’ll cover the ins and outs of Australia’s most popular online marketplaces and directories and how they connect businesses with local Australians for the purpose of completing a job.
AirTasker is an online platform which aims to simplify outsourcing processes for its users by connecting them to other everyday Australians who are looking to earn some extra cash. AirTasker connects its users with a wide range of outsourced services, from more complex skills like graphic designing to everyday tasks such as babysitting.
How do Airtasker payments work?
To guarantee security and smooth payment transactions, all monetary transfers on AirTasker go through the platform. When a user wishes to hire someone using the platform, they must enter their credit card details onto the site. When entering a bid, the user will use AirTasker Pay as a way to hold their money on the platform. Later when a task is completed, the worker may request for their payment through the AirTasker platform, upon receiving this request, AirTasker will then charge the user’s credit card for the requested and agreed upon payment.
AirTasker also protects its users with their general liability insurance, which covers independent contractors on the platform for their liability to third parties for personal injury or property damage whilst performing their work activities. However, this insurance does not cover faulty workmanship. Thus, the onus is on a task poster to clarify with a task provider on their expected work quality before accepting any offer.
How much are Airtasker fees?
Posting outsourced tasks and getting quotes is a completely free process on AirTasker. Only those who receive and perform tasks will be charged a service fee by AirTasker, which is 10-30% of the money made by a worker on the platform (excluding tax).
OneFlare is another marketplace platform which matches service seekers with service providers. Although widely known for their photography outsourcing services, OneFlare also lists other trade services such as cleaning, carpentry and landscaping.
OneFlare’s registration system differs from many other service-outsourcing platforms as it requires much more in-depth and legal detail for businesses. Before officially finding work on the platform, users and businesses will have to register on the platform by supplying their ABN (Australian Business Number) and verifying their identity by speaking with an OneFlare service member.
What is the OneFlare payment system?
Only Taskers are required to pay OneFlare through the ‘OneFlare credit’ system, in which Taskers need to pay in credits in order to place a quote and bid on a job listing. Job listers then get to sift through their quotes and settle on a price and service provider best suited for them. Each OneFlare credit costs $1.00, although there are bonus credits given depending on the size of the bundle. 20 credits cost $20.00 with one extra bonus credit, while 200 credits cost $200 with an extra 30 bonus credits.
Sending out over 40,000 new jobs each month, ServiceSeeking specialises in connecting businesses with local Australians who are ready to polish their skills and offer their services. ServiceSeeker serves a wide variety of people, including homeowners who may need help with renovations, renters who are looking for cleaners, as well as small business owners who may be considering outsourcing parts of their business operations.
How do ServiceSeeking payments work?
Payments on the platform are made through the ‘ServiceSeeking Payments’ method, which involves requesting online payments through the ServiceSeeking account dashboard. To keep things official yet simple, contractors are required to send an invoice to task-posters by filling out a simple form provided by ServiceSeeking. In this invoice, contractors need to state the cost of the job
In order to receive payments, users will have to submit their bank account details to ServiceSeeking, who will verify them before securely transferring payments into the account. Task-posters can pay using credit or debit cards through the ServiceSeeking secure payment gateway after receiving an invoice. The payment process ends when contracts receive their payments as well as a verification email of the payment. Payments are usually processed within 24 to 48 hours.
To make full use of the platform’s amenities, ServiceSeeking offers its users a series of membership packages that allow them to quote on any job listing, be registered as part of their directory as well as have their profile page listed on Google for search engine optimisation purposes. ServiceSeeking has a Basic Membership as well as a Master Membership package which ranges from $85.00 to $440.00 per month depending on the different features of each plan.
hipages is an online service directory that connects its Australian users looking for home improvement services to local businesses in the trade industry. Once a user posts a job onto the hipages website or app, the listing is then forwarded to registered tradesmen and businesses in the local area as a lead. These businesses then provide quotes that are sent to the job poster for reference.
In a unique partnership with the NSW Department of Education, hipages also provides registered businesses access to the Local Trades Scheme, which connects local trade businesses with over 2200 schools across NSW. The goal of this program is to allow schools to seamlessly source and get necessary maintenance jobs done through the hipages platform. To be registered on this scheme, businesses will need to have a hipages account, a valid ABN, all the relevant and necessary licenses and qualifications required to perform the trade work as well as a minimum $10 million Public Liability Insurance.
How does the Hipages payment system work?
As part of their job listing and lead created for local businesses, users need to include a full description of the job, any images of the site, the lead price and status and the location. A business looking to submit a quote for a job will have to pay the lead price. This lead price varies according to the different types of jobs (usually a minimum of $9.00), and if a business does not wish to pay the lead price for a job, they must mark the lead as ‘discarded’ on their hipages dashboard.
This lead price is the main fee for trade businesses looking to use hipages to connect them with more work. While paying this lead price to submit quotes to job listings, businesses will also receive multiple amenities from hipages, including a rating system for homeowners to post their honest reviews on the business as well as instant messaging for convenient contact with job listers.
Owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, True Local is a user-friendly Australian business directory
which helps to connect its users with local businesses while sharing their experiences through a star-
rating and review system. True Local works with both locals and business owners with its wide range of
For local Australians, the platform focuses on connecting them with highly rated businesses in their area and for business owners, True Local offers digital services such as website-building, online promotion and advertisements as well as advice on effective business operation strategies. The platform places a heavy emphasis on its user and business review system, which has strict guidelines and is heavily moderated to protect businesses from issues of defamation.
Rather than acting as a job listing and mediating platform between users and businesses like the other websites mentioned in this blog, True Local acts as a directory and distributes information about local businesses so that fellow Australians can locate them more easily.
Does listing a business on True Local cost money?
Unlike the other online platforms listed previously, GumTree is a unique online marketplace that not
only allows its users to sell and purchase services, but also various (usually second-hand) products.
When looking for independent contractors and freelancers, users will need to clarify whether they are
posting their advertisement in the ‘jobs’ category or ‘services for hire’ category.
How much does it cost to post on GumTree?
Posting an advertisement (either for promoting services or as a job listing) is free on GumTree. However, there are payment options and seller features which may help advertisements gain more exposure on the platform, such as text highlights, guaranteed top page features and bumps or reposts.
What do you think about these popular Australian third-party service websites? As most have different payment and credit systems, it is important to weigh up their business benefits and costs. You may find some commissions and payment systems to be too much for your business so always research all your options first!