Lean Company Grows by Depending on Global Freelancers [Case Study]



Linguistix Tank provides linguistics services, such as transcription and data validation, to artificial intelligence (AI) companies worldwide. From the beginning, this lean company based its business model on utilizing freelancers. However, when their main vendor couldn’t provide talent anymore, it left Linguistix Tank in a crisis. They suddenly had to replace about 700 freelancers, in 15 countries, on several active projects.

THE SOLUTION: Use Upwork to efficiently source, engage, and pay global talent

The company began sourcing on Upwork for its large, global talent pool. After noticing their usage, an Upwork Account Executive connected with the client to determine whether they could benefit from help with sourcing. Talent Services quickly presented Linguistix Tank with a list of freelancers to potentially interview. Within a few days, Linguistix Tank contracted all 700 freelancers. The number reached 1,000 within two weeks. Projects ran more smoothly because engagement, communication, and payment happened on a single platform.

“It’s easier to attract freelancers on Upwork,” says Mohamed Omar, founder and CEO at Linguistix Tank. “The quality of freelancers is higher overall, and the reviews are more accurate. I’m more willing to believe a 5-star is really a 5-star.”

THE RESULT: Company sustains growth by flexing to changing client needs

  • Volume ranges from 100 to 3,000 freelancers at one time
  • The company contracts talent for up to 70 languages, in up to 70 countries
  • Projects can last a few days to a few months
  • For some languages, 90% of freelance talent remains part of the company’s go-to resource for future projects

“From the beginning, we planned to use freelancers to stay lean and agile. We don’t plan to change that,” says Omar. “What has changed is we’re using more freelance specialists for internal growth. I’ve hired specialists in HR, business coaching, and marketing.”


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