SWAG or “Speak With A Geek” is an innovative service that attempts to connect you with technical specialists local to your business. It’s completely free to use and helps you find technical experts that can get you out of a jam or solve a problem.
For those offering services, Speak With A Geek works by matching you with business clients in your area based on your skills and certifications. The great thing is that it offers maximum flexibility – you can work when you want as much as you want and you control availability, client communication, hourly rate and invoicing. There are no commissions taken by SWAG either – the service is free to use so you have nothing to lose by at least listing yourself on there.
Offer your services
SWAG covers technical needs and skills for everything from installing hardware to programming. To get yourself listed on SWAG you merely need to list your skills, set an hourly rate, and offer your availability. SWAG then automatically matches you to clients who need your skills. SWAG has a clear interface and shows you a map with the location of the nearest “Geek” or technician that can help you. At the bottom of the screen is an indicator showing their hourly rate.
Contract and track a technician
When the person is working on a project, a timer indicates exactly how much they are spending on the work and there are buttons at the bottom to instantly call or text the geek. Speak With A Geek also provides a very transparent forum for businesses to evaluate technicians.
Both businesses and freelancers can leave reviews of the service they received and show whether they were satisfied or not. If you rate a technician with less than three stars, Speak With A Geek will avoid suggesting them again as a possible solution to your problems.
Once a project has been completed, you can communicate with and bill clients directly without the need for further intervention from Speak With A Geek and no commissions are taken from any fees charged.
Although Speak With A Geek is generally very easy to use, there are some usability issues that could do with addressing, such as the requirement to manually log in every time you want to use the service rather than an option to auto log-in.
Another caveat is that the effectiveness of Speak With a Geek depends on keeping your GPS switched on constantly. This is because SWAG is a location-based app and requires your current location to link you with the the right clients. The obvious downside of this is that having your GPS switched on all the time can seriously reduce your battery life. However, this should only be an issue for users that are constantly on the move. Those that are mainly based in one area or region only need to switch on their GPS to establish a set of clients in that area and then can switch it off again.
The future of IT support for business?
Another other slight problem at the moment is that the user base is still quite limited in certain areas, so business owners may have problems finding the right technical people in some regions. It’s also mainly focused on the USA so users outside of the US will find problems finding other businesses or those with technical knowledge. However, if the user base increases, Speak With A Geek could become a very valuable resource for freelancers and businesses without dedicated IT departments that need a quick fix.
Note that if you want to list yourself on the service, Speak With A Geek requires a Code of Honor to be respected by those that download the app and provide a service to businesses. Most of these are common sense but among them are things such as being respectful of clients and their property, not divulging company information to others, being punctual for appointments and visits and accepting full responsibility for your work.
Speak With A Geek can be a very effective tool if you’re in a region that has plenty of technicians on hand or if you’re a freelance tech support specialist or engineer looking for new clients in your area. You can check out more about SWAG and download the app here.
Let us know your thoughts: would you consider offering your tech skills through an app like this? Would your business trust an outsourced IT support solution like this?