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Previously hired worker takes too long to respond

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Dmitriy C Member Since: Feb 15, 2020
1 of 16

Hi,
The person we worked with previously - who was fantastic at answering our questions previously is suddenly taking 2 to 3 days to respond to SINGLE URGENT question (while constantly appearing online) and is trying to change contract terms to hourly contract after preparing the job for us on a fixed cost basis (saying he is the only one who can effectively change his code) - not a very professional way to handle client questions.
I wonder what can we do in this case?
Dmitry

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
2 of 16

If you have questions for this freelancer, you should hire him using an hourly contract.

 

Are you talking about a business? Or some little hobby?

If this is my business then of course I have a freelancer who has knowledge and expertise that can help my business on an hourly contract. I know that every time I send a question, he is motivated to answer and help me out because he logs every minute he spends, and gets paid for that work.

 

In fact, I look at his profile page and see what he regularly charges other clients. And I insist that his contract with me pays ten dollars an hour more than his contracts with anyone else. I want to be number one in his mind.

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Dmitriy C Member Since: Feb 15, 2020
3 of 16

why you think hourly contract is for serious business and fixed cost is for hobbies?

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 16

re: "Why do you think that an hourly contract is for serious business and a fixed-price contract is for hobbies?"

 

That's not what I think.

 

I think if you are serious about wanting a freelancer to help you, you should pay him for his work.

 

A freelancer who you once hired may have answered some of your questions in order to be nice. But he is under no obligation to do so.

 

By asking him for additional work, including asking him questions, when there is no contract in place to cover they work, you were violating Upwork prohibitions against asking for free work. This freelancer was being polite by not reporting you.

 

But let's set aside all considerations of rules and policies. Instead, I urge you to put yourself and your project first. The way to do that is to hire the freelancer using an hourly contract and put yourself at the front of the line when it comes to receiving his valuable attention.

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Jennifer R Member Since: Sep 15, 2017
5 of 16

Dmitriy C wrote:

Hi,
The person we worked with previously - who was fantastic at answering our questions previously is suddenly taking 2 to 3 days to respond to SINGLE URGENT question (while constantly appearing online) and is trying to change contract terms to hourly contract after preparing the job for us on a fixed cost basis (saying he is the only one who can effectively change his code) - not a very professional way to handle client questions.
I wonder what can we do in this case?
Dmitry


Do you have his code or do you fully depend on him?

You could make it an hourly contract and limit the weekly hours to what you think is reasonable. If you feel you can not trust the freelancer, you can just end the contract or check the worksheets you get. You should also define the deliverable (eg. updated code after each change/week).

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
6 of 16

Here is a test that a client can do to see if a freelancer is obligated to answer a question as part of a fixed-price contract:

 

Is the contract closed?

Then the freelancer is not obligated to answer any questions.

 

Is there a funded milestone? 
If no, then the freelancer is not obligated to answer any questions.

 

If there IS a currently open contract, with a currently funded milestone, then look in the written description for that milestone task. Does the SPECIFIC question that you want to ask appear in the written description of the task [or] does the written task description specifically state that the work on this task includes answering any questions the client has pertaining to the project?

If the answer is no, then the freelancer is not obligated to answer the question.

 

MOST OF THE TIME freelancers are very happy to answer a client's questions and will be very accommodating. But this means that the freelancers are being generous. They are trying to provide good customer service. They are under no obligation to do so.

 

A wise client knows that he doesn't have time and money to waste on having people working on his project for free.

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John K Member Since: Feb 17, 2015
7 of 16

Dmitriy C wrote:

Hi,
The person we worked with previously...  is trying to change contract terms to hourly contract after preparing the job for us on a fixed cost basis


Dmitriy, trying to change contract terms is known as "bait and switch", and it's inexcusable. Unless you've already paid a lot of money to the freelancer, you should end the contract and hire someone else in my opinion.

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
8 of 16

The original poster's wording does not really indicate that he has an open contract with the freelancer. He refers to a "previously hired" freelancer. It was my impression that there is currently no open contract.

 

Ultimately, whether or not there is a currently an open fixed-price contract is mostly irrelevant. The original poster has already been advised how to put his project first and achieve success.

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Dmitriy C Member Since: Feb 15, 2020
9 of 16

yes he did a gerat job of coding for a fixed price (200 USD for a script) before and now he says he is the ONLY one who can effectively change the code..He worked as a fixed contract before and now insists on hourly rate for only 2 features - he made ike 20 featrues at fixed cost before. Here is his last reply....I am new to this place and was thought it was full of decent coders....with some integrity...

 

I do not refuse my promise to correct errors in the script, let me know if you'll find some.
 If you do not agree with this, I see no reason to discuss new features. I can’t work for free.

 

I am not offerign to work for free - I am paying 30 usd for 2 features fixed-cost (20 features were made for 200 usd before)!

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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
10 of 16

This freelancer has acted professionally, has demonstrated considerable skill, and has also been very patient with the client.

 

The freelancer has already explained to you what your options are if you want to hire him. He is not available at this time for you to hire using a fixed-price contract.

 

It is not accurate to say that only this freelancer can make changes to the current source code. The freelancer has delivered the source code to you. You are welcome to hire anybody you want to make further changes to it.

 

Do you have any other questions?


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