I am a contractor but I feel I need to address a point here helpfully for as many clients to read it and consider it.
Elance (a freelaning site) was acquired by Upwork. The majority of contractors there perfer to work on fixed rate jobs. Since migrating/merging/transfering our accounts to this site because of the eventuful closing down of Elance, we are being unfairly taken advantage of. Upwork caters to contractors who work hourly jobs. It takes no consideration to contractors who work fixed rate and may have not only more experience and skills, but hours accumulated in fixed rate jobs.
There is a feature for clients that they can use that allows them to post as a requirement for consideration - Must have X amount of hours.
Please, do not use that option. You are limiting yourselves and passing up contractors who have the knowledge, education, skills and qualifications to complete your job. Please take into consideration the contractors who have worked fixed rate jobs.
When a contractor who may have worked 100 FIXED rate jobs applies to a posting with that requirement, the client gets a message that says this proposal does not fit the requirement. It also takes away the proposal area so contractors must enter their proposal in the questions areas.
Clients - If you get proposals with that message (contractor does not meet requirement) AND you have used that option, take the time out to read that proposal, (as stupid as it may look with the proposals in the questions area) and take into consideration the number of FIXED rate jobs that they've done, the feedback/reviews, their skills and qualifications. Better yet, do NOT use that option at all. You'll be presently surprised at the quality of contractors that apply.
"It also takes away the proposal area so contractors must enter their proposal in the questions areas."
Are you sure about that bit? If I'm not mistaken, clients can say that they require a cover letter (default), or they don't require a cover letter. Is it maybe a coincidence that they've not required a cover letter on the jobs where you've not met the hourly requirements, or is there some actually "you don't meet the requirements so you can't submit a cover letter" thing that I've missed?
Yeah, I don't think that's right. My first job on here was before I ported my profile, and I didn't meet like 3 of the requirements. I was still able to bid normally. I think there is even a message that alerts you and tells you that you can still bid normally.
Yes, you can bid normally, but the client gets the message that you don't meet their requirements. At least that's the message I got with each of the 3 jobs with that requirement.
I don't know how Upwork works, except for the fact now that it caters to hourly jobs and contractors who work hourly as evident in the missing feature that a contractor can use with 1 click, to turn an hourly job into a fixed rate. It's also evident by the option given to clients that lets them see (without any messages attached) proposals from freelancers who've worked just hourly jobs. I may be wrong, but if a client uses that option and they receive a proposal along with a message saying that this contractor does not meet that requirement, are they going to look at it if they've already had a fair number of proposals from contractors that DO meet that requirement?
I don't know about the ability of a client to display a cover letter area or not on this site. Maybe it IS a coincidence that the 3 jobs I applied to, that had the requirement of number of houirs worked didn't have that cover letter area. I can say the other jobs I applied to (fixed rate) had that cover letter area (along with the questions areas)
It's unfair and a disadvantage for a contractor that works, 100 Fixed rate jobs and amasses hours above the requirement number of hours gets the "this contractor does not meet your requirements" along with their proposal.
@Kathy T wrote:
1) we are being unfairly taken advantage of.
2) Upwork caters to contractors who work hourly jobs.
3) It takes no consideration to contractors who work fixed rate and may have not only more experience and skills, but hours accumulated in fixed rate jobs.
4) You are limiting yourselves and passing up contractors who have the knowledge, education, skills and qualifications to complete your job.
5) When a contractor who may have worked 100 FIXED rate jobs applies to a posting with that requirement, the client gets a message that says this proposal does not fit the requirement.
6) It also takes away the proposal area so contractors must enter their proposal in the questions areas.
1) "Taken advantage of?" How?
2) Upwork caters for both!
3) Yes it does
5) No. There is a small sign that the freelancer fits x out of x preferred features.
6) This is absolute nonsense. It does no such thing and there *IS* no "questions area. "
The minimum hours thing is a preference, it is not a set in stone requirement, and it does not put you into any weird or wonderful imaginary "questions area" or anything or of the sort.
When clients set preferences lots of freelancers will not fit them all. That does NOT disqualify them and people successfully win contracts day in day out without fulfilling all those preferences because their profiles and their cover letters and their proposals are strong.
PS - maybe you mean the need to write a cover letter,and the additional questions the client sets?
Those are the exact same for ALL applicants to a client's contract. There is absolutely no difference. It's what the client sets.
Here is the shortlist of my favourite applicants from a recent job posting of mine. I had dozens of applicants.
You see that both are not meeting my full set of qualifying preferences.
I always require a cover letter (and that applied to ALL applicants) for all my job postings, and I never ask those qualifying questions, because as a freelancer I detest them!
But seriously, you can apply and your application does not get treated any differently - whether you get the gig or not depends on your strengths. There is a notification of the number of matching preferences, yes, but it honestly doesn't stop you getting the gig if one or even two don't fit.
For the record: The one at the top (with"only" 3 out of 5) will get hired. I once won one where I fitted one of 4. It really isn't that big a deal for most clients. More a quick sorting help.
I agree with Petra.
If clients select that x amount of hours requirement, what they really mean (in most cases) is that they want someone who has worked on the site for a while. Since you are going to mention your previous projects and/or refer them to your profile/client history anyway, they will see that you have.
Good clients are most likely also smart/educated clients. They do know that 0 hours doesn't mean 0 experience.
Petra. in reply to your answers # 1 to 5 I will reply to them. And then that's all I have to say concerning this. I made my point. The opinion expressed are my own based on the experiences I've had and actual messages Upwork displays. Take it for what it's worth.
1) Taken advantage of?" How?
Simply by the fact that Upwork prefers hourly jobs. We, who work fixed rate jobs are at a disadvantage. It says so, Preferred Qualifications
Specify the qualifications you're looking for in a successful application. Freelancers may still apply if they do not meet your preferences, but they will be clearly notified that they are at a disadvantage
2) Upwork caters for both!>
Sorry, I do not agree with you on that. Upwork is a freelancer site that lists both hourly and fixed rate jobs. But it gives more preferences to hourly jobs. Simply by the fact that there is no way a contractor can change a job from hourly to fixed rate.. On Elance, as well as on other sites, it’s as easy as just clicking on a button or changing it in the project agreement by stating it’s a fixed rate job. And contractors can do that, to make it easier on clients. How is your ranking figured out on this site? Is it just feedback or does the number of HOURS worked come into play. If in some way hours are involved then it certainly DOES cater to both.
3) Yes it does.
Then please explain how? If Upwork isn’t geared towards hourly rates, then why – is there no feature to turn hourly into fixed rate. – Why are hours displayed on a profile Why can’t a job be designated as hourly on a profile like fixed rates are displayed as Fixed Rate, Why list the actual hours?– why is there the option at all for a client to request x amount of HOURS
4) Nope. Sorry,.
When clients list requirements, specifically number of hours. They will look first at all proposals that meet those requirements. As stated above, assuming you are correct, then why is that statement that Upwork displays there at all. See #1 for Upworks statement
5) No. There is a small sign that the freelancer fits x out of x preferred features.
Nowhere does what you just state appear as information to contractors. When I applied to 3 jobs all I got was a large warning type of message saying that … and I don’t have the exact wording, but saying that my proposal will be sent but the client will be notified that you did not meet their requirements.
6) This is absolute nonsense. It does no such thing and there *IS* no "questions area. PS - maybe you mean the need to write a cover letter,and the additional questions the client sets?
Yes, in ALL 3 instances when I didn’t fit the hours requirement, there was no cover letter area in which to write my proposal in. There were 2 questions, and 2 areas under those questions. Was that a coincidence?
In addition, if hourly jobs are supposed to be equal to fixed rate, aside what I wrote above, How would you like to pay? (why is that listed first when clients post a job?Why not have Fixed and Hourly side by side as check boxes?) And why is this requirement presented to clients (Hours billed on Upwork. (qualifications) put up at all if Upwork isn’t promoting hourly jobs
Actually, Kathy, the hourly vs fixed jobs has never been an issue for me. I would state, quite clearly, in instances where a certain number of hours have been required that if the client has a look at my job history, I would, by far, exceed this requirement. Strangely, I have never found it to hamper my bids in the slightest, nor in getting the job.
This is fine as it is.
Clients have the choice to specify requirements.
Contractors have the choice to ignore those requirements and bid anyway if they think they're a great candidate for the job.
It's all optional. I don't see the problem.
I don't personally use minimum hours as a requirement when I post jobs. I personally hire a mix of new and experienced contractors. But I can see why some clients would want to specify a minimum number of hours.
The truth is, though, most job postings don't use these requirements. So nobody should think this is a major cause for concern.