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How soon should I contact Freelancer?

Active Member
Nathan B Member Since: Mar 25, 2017
1 of 10

Hello,

 

I'm new to Upwork and hiring freelancers in general. I hired my very first on Thursday for some editing in which 7 days was the agreed timeframe for the first milestone. I paid to the escrow (debited from my banking account now on hold with Upwork until I hit pay I imagine).

 

My question is, how soon should I communicate with the freelancer performing the work? It's been 3 days on a 7 day project. I'm anxious and nervous due to many factors that could cause a job to go wrong i.e. - freelancer decided to not complete the task, freelancer is a scammer, etc.

 

I don't want to pester or be an annoyance, but at the same time I'd like to know as soon as possible if I need to cancel and look for someone else.

 

Any suggestions? 

Community Guru
Janean L Member Since: Apr 6, 2016
BEST ANSWER
2 of 10

You're the client. You're paying. You have great latitude.

 

In any case, it's not at all unreasonable to check in at day #3 of a 7-day job. I would do it. It's not "pestering." It's good communications.

Active Member
Nathan B Member Since: Mar 25, 2017
3 of 10

Thanks!

 

Message sent, now I anxiously await a response lol.

 

I am putting faith in the system Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 10

Nathan, if you have a critical deadline by which you need certain work done, then you can't just hire one freelancer who you have never worked with before.

 

You need to work only with freelancers who you have worked with before and know how likely they are to turn in work by the deadline, and you also know that the work they provide is what you need.

 

Or you need to hire multiple freelancers to do the same work.

 

Or you need to be relaxed about your deadline.

Active Member
Nathan B Member Since: Mar 25, 2017
5 of 10

Thanks Preston,

 

I sent the message and got a reply, she was very thankful for the deadline set which allowed her to get other work done in the meantime.

 

I don't really have a hard date to get the work done, but the sooner the better so I can get other things in motion that depend on the first process being done. Since this is my 2nd novel / short story I know the process better. I just don't know what is customary or acceptable for client / freelancer contact being new here.

 

But again thanks for the feedback.

Community Guru
Jennifer D Member Since: Feb 15, 2016
6 of 10

Often freelancers will be working on multiple projects for multiple clients and have to juggle their competing deadlines. If you gave them a 7-day deadline, and they know they only need 1 day to do the work, they might wait until day 6 to get started and work on other projects in the meantime.

 

There's a couple of ways you can mitigate this. The first is to ask them to review the file and let you know if they have any questions as soon as possible. You may even want to set a milestone for a small amount of the total, with a shorter deadline (of 1 or 2 days) for "initial project review" or something. That way, you know they've at least reviewed what you've asked them to do and they have no immediate questions and you can relax a bit more.

 

Another thing you can try is to say in the offer that you've set the deadline for x but if they can return the file earlier than that you'd appreciate it. This quite often works for me and I get faster results. Sometimes this might prompt the freelancer to ask if you have a hard deadline or to discuss the deadline and their plan for meeting it with you.

 

Like Preston said, if you have a hard deadline that must be met it's really ideal to either work with someone you've worked with before, or hedge your bets with a couple of different freelancers. It's very rare for me to have a hard deadline, so I can usually be pretty relaxed and flexible with my freelancers. But when I do have one I always either work with past freelancers or hire more than one.

Community Guru
Kat C Member Since: Jul 11, 2016
7 of 10

@Jennifer D wrote:

Often freelancers will be working on multiple projects for multiple clients and have to juggle their competing deadlines. If you gave them a 7-day deadline, and they know they only need 1 day to do the work, they might wait until day 6 to get started and work on other projects in the meantime.

 

There's a couple of ways you can mitigate this. The first is to ask them to review the file and let you know if they have any questions as soon as possible. You may even want to set a milestone for a small amount of the total, with a shorter deadline (of 1 or 2 days) for "initial project review" or something. That way, you know they've at least reviewed what you've asked them to do and they have no immediate questions and you can relax a bit more.

 

Another thing you can try is to say in the offer that you've set the deadline for x but if they can return the file earlier than that you'd appreciate it. This quite often works for me and I get faster results. Sometimes this might prompt the freelancer to ask if you have a hard deadline or to discuss the deadline and their plan for meeting it with you.

 

Like Preston said, if you have a hard deadline that must be met it's really ideal to either work with someone you've worked with before, or hedge your bets with a couple of different freelancers. It's very rare for me to have a hard deadline, so I can usually be pretty relaxed and flexible with my freelancers. But when I do have one I always either work with past freelancers or hire more than one.


Yes!

 

I operate in a similar way with multiple contracts. Each contract completion is timed based on the complexity of the writing/editing and further related to specific hard deadlines (if clients don't communicate a deadline, then I make sure I do).

 

Pinging a freelancer on day 3 to check in - IMHO - is a perfect amount of time to check in (again, just speaking from my own experience; other freelancer preferences will differ).

Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
8 of 10

@Kat C wrote:



Yes!

 

I operate in a similar way with multiple contracts. Each contract completion is timed based on the complexity of the writing/editing and further related to specific hard deadlines (if clients don't communicate a deadline, then I make sure I do).

 

Pinging a freelancer on day 3 to check in - IMHO - is a perfect amount of time to check in (again, just speaking from my own experience; other freelancer preferences will differ).


I agree, but even if a client does not ping me, I will usually send a short message  after a couple of days to say I am still alive and so is their project.

Community Guru
Kat C Member Since: Jul 11, 2016
9 of 10

@Nichola L wrote:

@Kat C wrote:



Yes!

 

I operate in a similar way with multiple contracts. Each contract completion is timed based on the complexity of the writing/editing and further related to specific hard deadlines (if clients don't communicate a deadline, then I make sure I do).

 

Pinging a freelancer on day 3 to check in - IMHO - is a perfect amount of time to check in (again, just speaking from my own experience; other freelancer preferences will differ).


I agree, but even if a client does not ping me, I will usually send a short message  after a couple of days to say I am still alive and so is their project.


Exactly.

 

I always do frequent check-ins with clients. 

Community Guru
Heath S Member Since: Mar 16, 2016
10 of 10

@Jennifer D wrote:

Often freelancers will be working on multiple projects for multiple clients and have to juggle their competing deadlines. If you gave them a 7-day deadline, and they know they only need 1 day to do the work, they might wait until day 6 to get started and work on other projects in the meantime.

 


I second what Jennifer D wrote. I have about 7 active projects now and work on them largely in order of deadline. The small ones usually get pushed to the end of the line. That said, I always inform my clients during my interview if I will not be starting work on their project immediately ("I won't be able to begin work on this until this weekend.") That way, if they want someone who can start right away, they will be able to choose a different freelancer.

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