"He will be available at anytime and would rarely question if he needs to stay late to meet deadlines, etc."
Not acceptable advice for people looking to hire a designer for the first time.
I'm with you on this one. I think it's reasonable to expect some extra hours from a full-time employee, but regularly expecting them to be on-call and work long days is how you get high turnover. Employees need to work hard for their employer, and the employer needs to be respectful of its employees' time. It's a two-way street.
If people are excited about the work, they'll work long hours and not even realize it. If they're just working long hours because it's expected, then you wont keep them around for very long.
Totally agree with both you guys. Its a given that passionate people will do what it takes to get a solid product out the door, but extra hours shouldn't be table stakes.
I'm sorry, but this article has a great deal of assumptions that are baseless. It paints the picture that freelancers are slightly inept and not focused on customer service, that agencies are the greatest thing regardless of their price, and that in-house designers are the poorest and most inexperienced of the lot. I understand that this article is framed for startups to consider hiring a designer, but I feel this post continues to promote the idea that design is only about aesthetics versus business value.
I mean, I guess, or you could just hire whomever fits the budget, timeline, and needs of the particular business problem that is trying to be solved.
There are plenty of cases for hiring any of these 'types' or several at the same time. I like being an in-house guy as it allows me to really iterate on problems and understand the business. I've worked alongside plenty of agencies, freelancers and other in-house people at a myriad companies or various sizes.
This posted is geared towards startups looking for a designer. As someone who's worked in an agency, as a freelancer and in-house, I have a few additional recommendations:
I would recommend avoiding agencies. If you do hire an agency, make sure you work directly with a designer. At larger agencies there is a huge amount of wasted time. There is a constant game of telephone between account executives, producers and the designers themselves.
Does design need to be a core competency of your business? If so, you should consider hiring someone full-time. For example, if you're selling enterprise software, that money is better spent on a freelancer and hiring another salesperson.
Hiring the wrong person full-time can be devastating to small businesses. Freelance-to-hire can be a good move in this case. Do a one month contract and decide, if it's a good fit.
Hey I just actually put together a comprehensive article on the same topic: Freelance Designer vs Design Agency
It’s always a “he”, huh?