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Freelancer Unable to Perform Coding Required - Dispute?

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
31 of 44

Scott B wrote:

Mark F wrote:

I agree with what you are saying in general, except maybe that 20% is low, but I would also point out that it the freelancer agreed that it was only a week's worth of work.  Without knowing the task, none of us can say if it is a week's worth of work for us, but even hourly it would be hard to manage that, in my opinion, to any different result.  He had, apparently, a simple task and hired someone to blow it out.  If I were hiring someone to do it, I would do it fixed price, and let them figure the burden of getting it done by the deadline.

 

But I will say what struck me from the beginning on this and he also paid $420.00 for the job.  My math puts that at $10.50 an hour and it also struck me that the client mentioned McDonald's and as it just so happens McDee's employees make on average $9.30 an hour in the US.  I can't speak for you or Preston but I wouldn't even look at this job unless it was something I thought I could get done in a day (which likely means it is something I already have code for).  I also would not take the job unless I knew I could complete it.

 

He hired a crappy freelancer.  That's the bottom line.  I don't know how this person convinced him they could do the task but I am pretty sure they couldn't convince me.  It sucks for the client and in some ways that sucks for all of us because we get painted with that brush.  


 Really the point here was to get people who may not have the experience to understand that a fixed bid is not at the price point that an experienced freelancer thinks the job will get get done. It that's price point plus a comfortable margin for the unknown otherwise the freelancer is assuming too much of the risk. 

 

 


This, so much of this. But mannn clients think for some reason fixed price is cheaper. So when they post hourly and I say it will take me 2 hours (for example), they get all ragey when they want to change the job to fixed price and my estimate goes up by an hour. 

 

I think freelancers perpetuate that idea though. But then, we see day in and day out scope creep rants and how they've put in extra work for freeee and blah blah.

Active Member
Scott C Member Since: Jul 12, 2019
32 of 44

"This, so much of this. But mannn clients think for some reason fixed price is cheaper. So when they post hourly and I say it will take me 2 hours (for example), they get all ragey when they want to change the job to fixed price and my estimate goes up by an hour. 

 

I think freelancers perpetuate that idea though. But then, we see day in and day out scope creep rants and how they've put in extra work for freeee and blah blah."

 

I don't know if cheaper is the word I would use, I was comfortable with a fixed price because I knew what I would have to end up paying.  For me, that meant some security.  

 

I am not so sure why you are so fixated on clients being "Cheap"....  maybe you have had a few bad experiences.  

 

I guarantee you that I am not.  I was willing to pay a reasonable price for the code I requested.  I spent a lot of time researching what I wanted, and also researching comparable projects and prices to get code programmed.  The Freelancer told me the price that he was willing to do it for, and I agreed to pay it.

 

Ultimately what I was hoping for was a code that worked according to the job posting description.  The payment was agreed upon and the job was accepted.  I think a lot of you are losing sight of this fact.

 

Could I walk away from this with a loss......of course I could, and most likely will, however there is also a principle at stake here.      

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
33 of 44

I do not think that the original poster was being "cheap."

 

More importantly, the problems he faced with his project do not stem primarily from "cheapness."


The original poster DID face problems with his project. He DID end up unsatisfied with the work done by the freelancer he hired.

 

The answer to these problems is not simply "hiring a more expensive freelancer."

 

The problems the original poster faced relate to differences between how the original poster EXPECTED things to work, and how things on Upwork ACTUALLY work (and by extension, how things work generally with freelancing and freelance platforms).

 

The original poster is NOT ALONE in some of the assumptions he made and the expectations he had. Many clients have similar expectations.

 

I think this stems partially from Upwork marketing, and partially from the fact that clients sometimes try to apply concepts from other websites to this one.

 

For example: Speaking generally (and not accusing the original poster of having such a mindset), a new Upwork client may be accustomed to buying things on Amazon.com or at Costco, and if those things don't work properly, they can return them.


Is this a reasonable expection when using a retail site or going to a store to buy products? Quite possibly.

 

Is it a "reasonable expectation" when hiring freelancers on Upwork?

 

Hmm... It may be a "logical expectation" for somebody who has bought things on other websites. But things don't necessarily work that way on Upwork. Whether or not they SHOULD work that way is different than whether or not they DO work that way.

 

The fact that the original poster had a certain final deliverable in mind, and paid a freelancer to create that for him, and then was extremely disappointed in the end results is proof that what a client expects to have happen on Upwork is not always what actually does happen.

 

I think it WOULD BE AWESOME if a client could always create a fixed-price contract and hire a freelancer and get exactly the results that he desired. But that is never going to be a guaranteed outcome.

 

Things are more complex when hiring freelancers. Things are more complex on Upwork. Things are more complex than that when hiring for programming.

 

There ARE successful ways to use Upwork (or other resources) to hire freelancers to work on programming/development projects. But there is more to it than simply creating a fixed-price contract and expecting things to work out perfectly.

Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
34 of 44

Mark F wrote:

But I will say what struck me from the beginning on this and he also paid $420.00 for the job.  My math puts that at $10.50 an hour and it also struck me that the client mentioned McDonald's and as it just so happens McDee's employees make on average $9.30 an hour in the US.  I can't speak for you or Preston but I wouldn't even look at this job unless it was something I thought I could get done in a day (which likely means it is something I already have code for).  I also would not take the job unless I knew I could complete it.

 

--------------------

The above paragraphs isn't quite right, In fact, fast food workers in N.Y city . make more that than that. 

Date                                        New York City                       Rest of the State
Current                                 $15.00                                    $12.75
12/31/2019                           $15.00                                     $13.75
12/31/2020                           $15.00                                     $14.50
07/01/2021                           $15.00                                     $15.00.
 
The coder accepted the job. I don't know if he accepted because the earnings were way above what someone would make if they lived in an area where the cost of living is very low. Or if he was just so happy to be offered a job that he would take anything at this point and would have said and promised you whatever you wanted.
 
This is one sided. We only hear from you and it would be great to get that freelancers point of view also. What as you say, would have only take a week, went on for much longer. It's been a month now with this freelancer. It isn't worth his time anymore. . 
 
A lot of us freelancers stay away from clients who post "Very easy job should only take X hours." Even if they show what they want they have no idea how complicated or how long it will take. Or they have such high expectations on what' they want. 
 
Cheap clients get what they pay for.- cheap freelancers who really don't know what they are doing. And if this freelancer could have made more money working at McDonalds then I have to say this job paid cheap. 
Active Member
Scott C Member Since: Jul 12, 2019
35 of 44

Update:

 

I continued to try to work with this Freelancer for the past couple weeks to try to get some usable code out of it.  They excuses kept coming from the Freelancer: 1) No internet connection, 2) Everything is working fine on "my" end-----but no proof, 3) I will be available on the weekend to answer all your concerns or questions --- but then doesn't respond when weekend rolls around.  

 

This was the last straw, so I cancelled the contract and requested a full refund prepared to take the loss...... and guess what????  The freelancer approved the refund!!   This surprised me, but nonetheless, I am grateful for him doing so.  

 

I took my money and went to a different web service, then posted the same job description, and guess what?  I was able to find SIX Freelancer's who were willing to do the same job that was posted here ($420), for prices between $100 and $200.   I ended up choosing a Freelancer in the middle ground to do the job for $150.  The job was completed in 24hrs, and I am now the proud owner of a code that previously couldn't get completed in 7 weeks....for more than twice as much money.  

 

For all those posting their "triggered" opinons and "jumping" to the conclusion that the client in this case was "being cheap" and "getting what they paid for"  ........ looks like you were all dead wrong!    

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
36 of 44

Scott:

I am grateful to you that you returned to share the rest of this story.

 

I am glad that you were able to get a refund from the freelancer.

(The freelancer is probably even more glad about this than you realize.)

 

It is good that you were able to find somebody to do the work you wanted done.


I think the moral to the story for any client out there who reads this is that not all freelancers are equal, and not all freelancers are right for the job. There can be BAD FITS, and a wise client will recognize this early on and stop working with freelancers who aren't providing them with the value they need.

Community Leader
Richard S Member Since: Mar 12, 2019
37 of 44

Scott C wrote:

Update:

 

I continued to try to work with this Freelancer for the past couple weeks to try to get some usable code out of it.  They excuses kept coming from the Freelancer: 1) No internet connection, 2) Everything is working fine on "my" end-----but no proof, 3) I will be available on the weekend to answer all your concerns or questions --- but then doesn't respond when weekend rolls around.  

 

This was the last straw, so I cancelled the contract and requested a full refund prepared to take the loss...... and guess what????  The freelancer approved the refund!!   This surprised me, but nonetheless, I am grateful for him doing so.  

 

I took my money and went to a different web service, then posted the same job description, and guess what?  I was able to find SIX Freelancer's who were willing to do the same job that was posted here ($420), for prices between $100 and $200.   I ended up choosing a Freelancer in the middle ground to do the job for $150.  The job was completed in 24hrs, and I am now the proud owner of a code that previously couldn't get completed in 7 weeks....for more than twice as much money.  

 

For all those posting their "triggered" opinons and "jumping" to the conclusion that the client in this case was "being cheap" and "getting what they paid for"  ........ looks like you were all dead wrong!    


Scott, throughout this thread you came across as a pretty decent guy. You had a project that needing doing and the person you chose to do it has one way or another let you down.

 

All I would say to those posting jobs, please take a little bit of time to consider the proposals you receive. If the work is important to you then give adequate consideration to the freelancer you choose to employ. Think about the time they have given in their proposal to your specific task, look at their profile, their JSS and previous feedback from other clients.

 

No. it's not going to guarantee that your job is completed successfully, but it will limit the chance of such a scenario occurring. 

 

There are many, many, highly skilled and professional freelancers on the site that really do care about the jobs they are asked to undertake.

 

Just a few minutes takinfg the time to properly consider a proposal can save you weeks or months delay by hiring the wrong person in the first place.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
38 of 44

re: "All I would say to those posting jobs, please take a little bit of time to consider the proposals you receive."

 

Or don't.

 

My time is valuable.

 

I don't want to spend my time looking through proposals.

There are often times when I simply hire the first person who applies to a job, and then I set the job to private so nobody else applies.

 

If that person isn't up to the task, then I can make the job public again and hire somebody else.

 

This saves me a lot of time.

 

I create descriptive, clear job descriptions, and I rarely end up hiring somebody who can't do the work.

 

If I end up hiring somebody who can't do the job, so what? I just close the contract and hire somebody else. As long as I use hourly contracts, it's not a big deal. If I hire one freelancer for only ten minutes, and the next for ten hours, so what? They're all getting paid their hourly rate for the amount of time that they work.

 

I sometimes hire using fixed-price contracts as well. If a freelancer isn't working out, I can end things immediately by releasing all the escrow money and closing the contract.

 

I DO NOT MIND if other clients take time to read proposals and carefully choose freelancers from a list of possible candidates.

 

I am simply pointing out that such an approach is only ONE way to hire freelancers on Upwork.

 

There are MANY, MANY types of work for which hiring quickly would be the wrong approach. The longer-term a project, the more it makes sense to take some time to hire a freelancer, or take time to hire multiple freelancers.

 

But many projects are small and targeted in scope, and taking a long time to hire somebody eliminates much of the time-saving advantage that is inherent in using Upwork.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
39 of 44

In my own experience, the more technically-challengeing and difficult a task is, the less likely it is that an unqualified freelancer will apply to my job posts.

Community Leader
Richard S Member Since: Mar 12, 2019
40 of 44

Preston H wrote:

re: "All I would say to those posting jobs, please take a little bit of time to consider the proposals you receive."

 

Or don't.

 

My time is valuable.

 

I don't want to spend my time looking through proposals.

There are often times when I simply hire the first person who applies to a job, and then I set the job to private so nobody else applies.

 

If that person isn't up to the task, then I can make the job public again and hire somebody else.

 

This saves me a lot of time.

 

I create descriptive, clear job descriptions, and I rarely end up hiring somebody who can't do the work.

 

If I end up hiring somebody who can't do the job, so what? I just close the contract and hire somebody else. As long as I use hourly contracts, it's not a big deal. If I hire one freelancer for only ten minutes, and the next for ten hours, so what? They're all getting paid their hourly rate for the amount of time that they work.

 

I sometimes hire using fixed-price contracts as well. If a freelancer isn't working out, I can end things immediately by releasing all the escrow money and closing the contract.

 

I DO NOT MIND if other clients take time to read proposals and carefully choose freelancers from a list of possible candidates.

 

I am simply pointing out that such an approach is only ONE way to hire freelancers on Upwork.

 

There are MANY, MANY types of work for which hiring quickly would be the wrong approach. The longer-term a project, the more it makes sense to take some time to hire a freelancer, or take time to hire multiple freelancers.

 

But many projects are small and targeted in scope, and taking a long time to hire somebody eliminates much of the time-saving advantage that is inherent in using Upwork.


Hi Preston and thank you for your response to my post.

 

I'm sure you will appreciate that my advice was not aimed at you, it was aimed at the original OP and others who may be new to the site ot have limited experience in using it.

 

It was general advice meant to help people, no more complicated than that.

 

I did not say or suggest that it was a 'catch all approach' to every job that was posted, just that adopting such an approach (generally) when hiring a freelancer may avoid, or at least minimize the chances of thing's 'going South'. 

 

Whilst I am suprised that you apparently on occassions 'hire the first person that applies' for a job you post, that is of course entirely you're call. You don't have time to read through proposals, but you do have time to subsequently cancel a contract, explain to an FL why you are cancelling, reposting the job and going through the rigmarole of hiring someone else. All because you didn't take the time to hire the right person in the first place?

 

I'm also suprised that you are seemingly perfectly happy to accept the additional costs that you have incurred through this happening. Personally, I would want, if at all possible, to hire the right person for the job first time around.

 

Again, I was only trying to contribute some advice which may help clients using the site. If we can minimize the potential for projects going wrong between an FL and a Client, I hope you agree that that would be something worthwhile for everyone.

 

Ps I said 'a little bit of time' in relation to considering FL's proposal's, not 'a long time' which is the phrase you have for some reason decided to use in your reply.

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