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Is it considered rude to make multiple offers to hire people for a one person job?

Community Guru
David G Member Since: Oct 6, 2011
11 of 18

@Preston H wrote:

re: "Preston, the thing is, I'm under the impression that Ryan intended to give work to and to pay only one contractor."


Clearly it would be wrong to do. It would be harmful to contractors and be of no benefit to the client.


Yes, that would be unethical.


I don't know if anybody here was actually thinking of doing that, but now if anybody has considered that, they know not to do it.

 Preston, if you read Ryan's post you will see that this is exactly what he is asking about.


He sent offers to three people with the plan to only work with the person who responds first. He is not looking to hire three freelancers. He only wants to hire one (the person who responds first) but sent job offers to three people.


This is not a good idea. You should only send a job offer to a person you are intending to hire.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
12 of 18

Thank you everybody for your coments.


If I may clear up one bit of confusion:

The original poster did not intend to hire contractors without paying them.

He intended to send hire offers to 3 contractors without actually hiring 2 of them.


So we can certainly debate whether doing what he did is appropriate or ethical, or whether it would even physically work within the Upwork system as it currently functions...


...but the original poster's *intent* was not to hire more than one person. His intent was to hire only one person.


According to what the original poster wrote, he sent hire offers to three contractors simultaneously, with the setting on the offers checked such that the job would automatically be closed once the first person accepted the offer.


I don't know if that actually works.


If that DOES work (one contractor accepting the hire offer blocks anybody else from successfully accepting the offer), then this would mean that only one contractor (not three) is actually hired.


My own opinion is that, even if it works (and I don't know that it does), I don't think what he did is a good idea.


I think what he SHOULD do is to actually hire and pay all three people, but limit their time to an hour each, and tell them (before sendign the hire offer) that he is evaluating their work and will continue working with the person he likes best.


If he is unwilling to pay for at least some work from all contractors he sent hire offers to, then he should have only sent a hire offer to one contractor.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
13 of 18

@Preston H wrote:

1) According to what the original poster wrote, he sent hire offers to three contractors simultaneously, with the setting on the offers checked such that the job would automatically be closed once the first person accepted the offer.


2) I don't know if that actually works.


1) That is what he thought he did, but there is no such functionality. What he set was the option to close the job posting when someone accepts, that will inform the applicants who were not sent an offer that the job posting was closed and their application declined. The offers to the people who were sent an offer remain alive and kicking.


I am still curious how this panned out and if he woke up to 3 x 8 hours logged and 3 x his workproduct delivered....


2) It doesn't


I totally agree that hiring several freelancers for paid tests is the way to go. I've had that twice in the last month


Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
14 of 18

Thanks, Petra!


Fantastic clarification.

Ace Contributor
Marissa A Member Since: Apr 29, 2015
15 of 18

I did this before without actually realizing. I needed to hire 3 people and sent 3 offers, The last one I sent maybe 1 hour after the 2nd one and I clicked the option to close the job post thinking I was done with that but what actually happened was that the 3rd person accepted the offer before the 2nd one and then when ge got around to do it, he couldn't accept the offer so I had to create a new offer just for him. So the function does work but I would never give it that use.

Community Guru
Cathleen C Member Since: Aug 17, 2015
16 of 18

If the client makes it clear in the job proposal that he/she is hiring multiple freelancers as a test, I see nothing wrong with testing out each freelancers skills. That makes sense.


If a client asks for a job proposal for a 24-page magazine, hires 3 freelancers on an hourly basis, then cuts 2 of them off after an hour, I think that is deceptive. Making no mention of the freelancers time as being a test and not actually getting hired to do the 24-page magazine is just wrong.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
17 of 18


I agree with you.


It would not be right for a client to hire contractors by giving them the impression that they are being hired for a large, ongoing project if the client is really hiring them for a test.


That would be a disservice to the contractors.

And, ultimately, doing that will cause trouble for the client. There is no benefit to the client to being deceptive about that.


A client does NOT need to tell the contractors everything. If the client wanted to hire contractors for a small job and not let on that there is a bigger project beyond that, that would be fine, too. Just give the contractors a short assignment and don't mention the larger project. Many clients have hired me that way.


Thus, it is not necessary to tell a contractor that the work a contractor is being hired for is a test job. Sometimes it may make sense to do so. Sometimes not.


Upwork's documentation for clients actively encourages hiring contractors for smaller test jobs before moving onto larger projects. It makes good business sense to do so.


If the client is really hiring contractors on a test basis, the client SHOULD NOT hire contractors with the pretense that they will be working on a long-term project UNLESS THEY TELL the contractor explicitly that they are being hired on a trial basis.

Active Member
Ryan C Member Since: Aug 26, 2015
18 of 18

Hi Everyone.  


Lots of fantastic advice here.  I appreciate all the help.  


So as many have pointed out I was confused to the functionality of how Hiring Offers, Job Posting, and Contracts work.  Luckily I was able to withdraw the offers for the other two freelancer's without impacting their Job Scores. Had all three accepted I would have just bit the bullet and paid them.  I was careful to limit the Contract's hours so it wouldn't have been the end of the world.  


I read all the help files on how to use Upwork, and in my opinion, they aren't all that clear on how the workflow for Clients is supposed to work end to end.  I could easily see other Upwork newbies like myself making a lot of mistakes. 


I would be a nice piece of functionality to be able to set up a job so that you have a specific number of hires in mind, and then make multiple hiring offers;  once people accept the offers up to the number of hires you determined in the contract, it would automatically withdraw any outstanding Hiring Offers without impacting the freelancer in any way.


One final comment...There is some broken functionality on my account right now where proposals, and applications (among other things) weren't showing up;  Upwork engineering is working on a fix.  This only further complicated the issue.  It was certainly a learning experience getting my first job on here completed. 


Anyways, I won't be sending out multiple hiring offers for a one-person job again, that's for sure.  ; ) 


Take it easy,