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joeorsi28
Community Member

Why are Agency Profiles completely useless?

I have been working on Upwork for 3 years now and am exploring ways to scale. I decided to bring partner with a friend and create an agency. I feel like I must be missing something because I am unable to find a single useful feature that an Agency profile provides. 

 

It seems obvious to me that, at the very least, an agency profile should be able to assign work to its agency members. Instead, Upwork forces the client to do this. The problem is that 90% of clients have never used upwork before, which means I now have to walk them through the process of setting up a second contract with my freelancer. Not only is this a huge nuisance, but it is the exact same process that I would go through if I didn't have an agency and just wanted to have my client hire a colleague. What is the point of having an agency?

 

In addition to offering 0 value-add over normal freelancer accounts, the agency actually detracts from value by seriously hindering SEO. My friend's earnings are counted towards my agency and his account was eventually removed from search results because he had no activity, despite the fact that he had been working every week. 

 

Only after calling to complain did Upwork inform me that there is a free agency account which at least does not charge me $20/month for nothing. This was not an option when I originally signed up. 

 

One final note: I absolutely hate the agency reports. They are also far inferrior to the simple earnings report on normal freelancer accounts.  

 

I have downgraded and made my friend's account "non-exclusive" so that he can earn on his own. However, I am still wondering what the point of the agency account is. Upwork should either eliminate this profile type so as not to waste freelancer time or make changes to make it easier to work on group projects. 

16 REPLIES 16
kochubei_valeria
Community Member

Hi Joseph,

 

Thank you for sharing your feedback about using agencies. I've already shared it with our product team that's working on improving agency experience. 

~ Valeria
Upwork
ryan64128
Community Member

I agree with Joseph.  I signed up as an agency and got absolutely no benefit for doing so.  What is the point of having agencies if clients can't hire agencies?  If a client hires an agency to work on a project, then anyone within the agency should have the abiltiy to work on it, not just one person!  That's absolutely ridiculous!   There is no point to use an agency because the agency is just syntactic sugar for calling freelancers something that they are not reallly.  Please remove the ability to form agencies if you have no intent of fixing its function.  Waste of time!  Can clients not hire agencies because that would cause upwork to have agencies set up as an actual business for tax purposes?  

Hi Ryan,

 

Contracts with the agency are created at the individual freelancer profile level, even while agency contract earnings roll up to the agency. Thanks for your feedback. We'll be sure to share it with the team. 

~ Joanne
Upwork

I know that.  And that's the problem

anna_pierz
Community Member

Unfortunately, I must agree here!

We pay 20 USD per month and we do not even receive any connects in this.

Agencies are building UpWork up, but there is no additional support from UpWork side.

I would bring more clients to UpWork but the process is long and not easy for clients - especially those who have never worked on Upwork.

Anna,

 

Thank you for sharing your feedback and I'm sorry to hear you feel unsupported on Upwork. Could you please share the difficulties clients you've tried bringing on Upwork encountered? We could definitely assist you and other agencies with this as well as provide feedback to our team about any steps that we can consider in order to streamline the process.

~ Vladimir
Upwork

Vladimir G, You are one of the senior support members on Upwork since it was Elance. You know very well how the companies/agencies were working there. Why you dont convince your team to apply that model on upwork also? As It is said thousands of times from agency owners in last 7 years to apply that model where agency manager can assign work to its team members himself instead of asking the clients to hire this and hire that team member of the agency.

cybermed
Community Member

Great points, I am following this conversation. 

7b9a9759
Community Member

I was considering shifting to an Agency -- until I read this thread. I

 

s there a link to pros/cons of creating an Agency?

 

Has there been any recent progress to solving the Agency challenges posted here?

 

Happy Holidays to everyone!

Hi Kevin,

 

Feel free to ask us any questions you have regarding agencies and we will be more than happy to help you out. In the meantime, I suggest checking out this help article to learn more about agencies and how they work on Upwork.

 

Thank you.

~ Aleksandar
Upwork

Thank you for the link to the articles, I think most of us asking "Why are
Agency Profiles completely useless" have already seen these articles. We
are looking for tangible reasons that will compel us to stay or become an
Agency.

Hey Kevin,

Unfortunately, agencies on Upwork are not very well organized. There are few features that actually may want to start an agency, such as having all services and teams listed under one page. From the management perspective, it is very tricky.

For example: if your freelancers are non-exclusive and you want them to work on a project and recommend them to a client you CANNOT simply assign them to the project. Instead, the client needs to invite this person and this person has to put the agency as default team to accept the project "under" your agency - otherwise, it goes to only his own account and you, as an agency, do not get anything from this recommendation - the project does not even appear for agency... ๐Ÿ˜• I only keep the agency to have everything together in one place but it is not useful...
This is just one example.

I am here to help clients and help freelancers - not to make them walking through many steps that do not really make sense...

Anyway. 

What is the purpose of your agency? Do you have a team working together (in one office) - that you can manage the whole work with one account? 

4f97bf54
Community Member

Hi Joseph!

 

Thank you for this line of enquiry... I thought I just wasn't understanding what an 'Upwork Agency' is... I thought it was me... but this chain shows that it isn't me, it's upwork. 

 

They seem to completely misuse the term 'agency' as viewed from a client's prospective. I hire an agency, and not a person to get different talent on a project. Sometimes I choose the personnel at the agency and sometimes not. I pay one price to 'get the job done'... and as a client I search for agencies not individuals

 

Here it's stood on it's head... as 'talent', sure I can be part of one of these loose confederations but in practice, why would any client hire the agency because they found me.

 

The whole thing makes no logical sense.

 

najum98
Community Member

I recently downgraded my agency subscription and am back to freelancer profile. I feel like I wasted money on agency subscription with no benefit. To add cherry to the top, many clients mention that they're not willing to work with agencies on Upwork. Upwork really need to up their game in agencies model.

dnodson
Community Member

Completely agree on this. It seems in the four years since this review was written, Upwork has done nothing to add value for the Agency model in spite of their responses in this thread claiming that they were working on improvements.

 

I signed up for the Agency Plus offering, because I wanted to enjoy every feature offered. Just downgraded to the free model to give Upwork a little more time to correct the situation.

 

There is no ability to add projects and no ability to promote the profile. It doesn't carry any of the recognition I have built on Upwork over the past 4 years. I'll give them until the end of April 2024 to make the necessary changes and drive some value to this offering. 

45a2183b
Community Member

Oh my god, it's been 4 years since this post was created showing the issues and limitations of agencies and today 20th Feb 2024 still the same limitations! I have wasted time and money creating an agency, what a dissapointment. 

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