Some problems are good to have.
Your company is growing. You need a new website, perhaps some marketing materials, a newsletter or a brochure laid out. Its time to hire a Graphic Designer. You’re a small to medium company, so it’s best to hire a recent grad.
Lets look at the math: starting salary for a designer is in the neighborhood of $40,000+ per year. Take that up a notch if you want to go after someone from a design school (Think Ringling or VCU). He or she needs to work on high end Mac so get ’em an IMac loaded with the latest and greatest software and fonts. Wait, don’t forget the insurance. Now take pencil to paper and you in the neighborhood of $55,000… ouch!
Now you have your designer in place. Do you have enough work to keep them busy 8 hours a day? At first you probably do. But as the economy ebs and flows, you might not. This is where having a trusted designer on speed dial will serve you better in the long run.
Again, lets go back to the math. That designer, after everything factored above costs around $30 per hour if they are constantly working 8 hours a day. If they aren’t, that hourly rate is going up. Lets keep in mind, were talking about someone with little to no experience.
I know what your saying, “A Freelancer costs more then $30 per hour!” and I completely agree with you.
If you’re hiring a freelancer with over 10 years experience, it’s going to take them half the time to do the work of newbie AND your getting ten times the experience. In the long run, it would cost you virtually the same and you will have a better product at the end.
Find a freelancer with a good reputation, bring them in for a chat and see if there is a good connection. Make sure they have the same work ethic that you do and can hit your deadlines. You might find that, yes, your paying more per hour but saving money in the long run by only paying when you need to and getting better design to boot!
Something to think about.