Hi there - just wondering if anyone can help me guage the cost of employing a skilled data-entry person with good English? I'd like to understand what the average hourly rate looks like.
Thanks for your help!
Hi Steve L
In my professional opinion and limiting my reply to my experience with oDesk freelancers, a lot depends on the quality of the English language usage you are in need of and the accuracy of the data entry. That is especially important if the data entered must be in a uniform format (e.g., product categories, product descriptions, accounting data, etc. -- where drop-down selection would be best yet not available).
Generally, it is readily apparent that the most cost effective freelancers are those that reside outside of first-world nations. Consequently, the quality of deliverables (i.e., English language skills) is often less than expected.
That is not to say that third-world nations lack fully qualified freelancers. It is just that they are much harder to find considering the huge quanity of freelancers from those locations..
Given the information above, I would say as a general rule of thumb, whether from first-world nations or in some cases third-world nations, payment of $7 to $12 per hour inclusive of oDesk fees would best result in higher quality outcomes. The old adage "you get what you pay for" applies.
Also, I would avoid working through agencies on oDesk as sometimes the agencies will assign different freelancers to the same job -- often a significant problem here on oDesk.
I can't add much more then already has been said. It will depend though on what you are wanting. If you want simple data entry then do as suggested. If you are looking for someone who can do more then data entry down the road then I would suggest looking for someone with skills you might want to incorporate later on.
As already said, you get what you pay for, so look at your choices carefully. Maybe offer a paid trial to see if they are going to be able to do what you want in a timely manner. Ratings on here do not mean everything so do not go by ratings alone.
Good luck in your search.
Thanks Preston - sounds like you and Suzanne have the same advice: to do a trail run and see how it goes rather than spend time making decision based on ratings and interviews.
You probably would be safe on the higher end of the pay scale not having to worry about a trial run, but if you choose to use someone on the lower end I would do a paid trial run and go from there.
With some of the data entry people unfortunately if you go the lower end you might find someone with a 5 star but he may have kept it refunding money. You may not get what you are paying for, but it is a higher chance with someone with a higher rate you will probably find someone who has been doing it for some time and is proficient in what they are doing.
I would think you still would want to interview to make sure it is the right fit for you, not just higher someone from the cover letter.