Many of us who have been around for some time and have participated in discussions on this topic regard Upwork's "recommended candidates" feature as a placeholder for efforts they are currently working on and hope to make effective in the future. It's results currently should not be considered "relevant" or "accurate."
It is important to understand that Upwork does not vet contractors. Many Upwork contractors are excellent. But many of them are mediocre at best. And many of them are outright scammers who will not do any work on your behalf but till attempt to trick you into paying them a lot of money.
There is useful information in contractors' profiles.
But the only way to know who is the best candidate for a job is to hire multiple contractors, review their work, and decide who did the best work on your behalf.
If you post a job, get 20 candidates, see that 15 proposals are worthless and the candidates are obviously unqualified, but interview 5 of them who appear to be strong prospects, and select 1 of them... How do you know one of the other 5 candidates would not have been better?
There is no way for you to know that.
So you have two choices, both of which are valid choices depending on your budget and the needs of your project:
1) Hire the candidate you think is best, with an understanding that this candidate MAY OR MAY NOT be the best and may cost you more for lower-quality work than the other 4 candidates, but that's okay.
2) Hire all 5 candidates for a short period of time, review their work, and pick the best one to continue working with you on a long-term basis.
REMEMBER: There is NO WAY TO KNOW how a contractor will work out for you and your project until you hire her.
"Many Upwork contractors are excellent. But many of them are mediocre at best. And many of them are outright scammers [emphasis added] who will not do any work on your behalf but till attempt to trick you into paying them a lot of money."
Do you have any reliable stats on this?
i had raised this issue long time back..why such mails are sent to clients only recommending few of freelancers..i may be among the ones recommended at times but seriously it doesnt make any sense doing like this.
if you go on recommending few of them how will others get work? please remove this feature otherwise day is not far many freelancers tired of such issues are going to leave freelancing all together
Why would they remove it. It is rotated. Yeah some that are clearly not qualified will get in the mix. Plus when clients post projects they can get up to 100 proposals or in some instances more. If they sent a client an email every time someone posted a proposal they clients would run for the hills having their email box full of all those emails.
answer is simple dont recommend anyone and report that candidate to client's email...let client decide who is the best and who is not...give him/her a free hand rather than recommending proposals