This is the story of how my business partner, Nathan Hirsch, and I have gone from Amazon experts to building a remote hiring platform for the eCommerce industry, FreeeUp. Keeping it short and sweet, I’m telling the story in under 600 words.

Nate and I met at Quinnipiac University in 2011 while attending the same business law class. Nate asked me if I was I interested in helping him grow a new business that he started and I said, “Yes.” We started selling text books on Amazon.com and quickly expanded into other products like toys and baby products as they were opened on the Amazon Marketplace.

Three short years later and we were generating over $5 million in sales per year with a team of over 50 people. We became experts at running an online business through Amazon and even got into developing some of our own software to manage the 1,000 drop ship relationships that we had created with suppliers from around the United States. At one point, we were managing over 1,000,000 sku’s in our virtual (or digital) inventory and was selling in almost every product category on Amazon. We knew everything about the drop ship business model and took it to its greatest heights on Amazon.

Throughout this experience, we got into hiring remote workers to help maintain the operations of the business while our in-house team focused on growth projects. We fought with the difficulty of recruiting, interviewing, and hiring the right online freelancers until we had a proven process for making sure they were reliable, communicative, and skilled at their given expertise. We were frustrated with the current online marketplaces for hiring and decided that we wanted to create a better solution.

So, we started to build FreeeUp. While still learning about our customers, we offered consulting, miscellaneous Amazon services, and courses on selling safely at Amazon in addition to the workers who we had in our network. We listened to our clients, made iterations, and ended up at a place where we had a service (a platform) that was built based off of the feedback of clients. (See the Lean Startup Method for similar strategies).

Here’s what makes us stand out.

1. Customer experience

We obsess about the client’s experience, and so, we are hands-on in the hiring process…you can always speak with someone from the company. And we’ll always fix your problem when brought to our attention.

2. Saving time for business owners

We eliminate the time that a business owner would take to post a job, interview, and try to choose the best worker. We interview hundreds each week and only let the top 1% into our network. As a client, you sign up, fill out a form requesting the worker that you need, and we introduce you to them within hours.

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3. A platform experience

You don’t worry about tracking the worker’s hours and paying them each billing period. Everything is run through your FreeeUp account where you can access all worker hours, worker notes, and payment information.

4. Turnover protection

In the rare case that a worker ever decided to leave, we replace the worker immediately and cover all re-training costs. You never take a step backwards in HR.

It’s about 16 months out from when we started and we have been featured in leading online publications such as The Huffington Post, the Entrepreneur on Fire podcast, Influencive.com, among many others. We have a blog that publishes content 3x per week featuring advice from leading experts in eCommerce and online hiring. We have published our own eBook on the most common mistakes of hiring remote workers. And over 30,000 people visit our website on a weekly basis.

2017 offers an amazing opportunity for us to continue to iterate based off of our customer’s feedback, build the FreeeUp brand, and increase the number of users on our remote hiring platform.

If you’re interested in hiring your own remote worker, email me at Connor@FreeeUp.com and we’ll get the ball rolling. You can also check out FreeeUp.com for more information. Sign up is free and we’re happy to speak with you about your hiring strategy before submitting your first worker request.