Hello... I'm new to upwork and I'm unfamiliar with its operations. So I would appreciate if anyone that can walk me thru the billing process.
I hired a guy to create a custom program for me. We agreed he'd bill me on an hourly rate. He estimated it would take approximately 18 hours to complete, and say's he's put 16 hours into the project... Unfortunately, the program doesn't work at all! It's not even close to working correctly
We've been communicating over the last week or so to correct the issues, but they've never been resolved.I was trying to contact him today to talk about it, but he's not replying to messages or calls. Which I thought was odd because he's usually reposnve to messages.
Then I noticed I had an alert I was billed $800+. I hadn't investigated the subject of billing when I joined upwork... but I assumed I would have to approve payment before it went through.
There's a grey dot next to his name... but don't know what that means. I can see he's on my contract and it says active. Yet when I look under his work history... He has 5 jobs listed under completed, and 2 jobs listed under in progress. The job I hired him for does not appear under either one. So I'm pretty confused about what's going on.
I'm willing to give it a day to see if I hear from him... But I'm really getting a scammed vibe right now. Am I freaking out over nothing? I've looked at the page on how to receive a refund... But I don't want jump the gun in case I'm reading something into his absence I shouldn't be
Could someone share their experince with me on this topic? Thanks!
If you do not love the work that a freelancer is doing for you, then fire the freelancer and assign his tasks to other members of your team.
If you don't have enough freelancers working on your project, then hiring new ones.
You should always look for which freelancers working on your project provide you with the most value. Continue working with those freelancers. End the contracts of the rest.
re: "I would appreciate if anyone that can walk me thru the billing process."
When you hire a freelancer with an hourly contract, then you pay for the time that a freelancer logs while working on your project. The bill is based on time, that's all. The bill is not associated with a specific deliverable.
re: "Unfortunately, the program doesn't work at all! It's not even close to working correctly"
Well, we are really getting into something that is the project manager's job to deal with. Just talk with your project manager and have him handle this.
But: If you did not hire a project manager, then it means that you (the project owner) are the projet manager. And if you have not been performing the tasks done by a project manager, it means that the lead developer (the freelancer) is the project manager.
But only about 20% of lead developers are able to serve as their own project manager.
I want to be very clear about this. As far as I understand it:
- You did not hire an independent project manager.
- You did not perform the tasks of a project manger yourself.
- The freelancer you hired is not able to serve as his own project manager.
Therefore, by defintion, the project failed.
re: "Recieved an invoice but project does not work correctly"
The title of this thread almost makes it seem like you think there should be some sort of connection between the functionality of a project, and the invoice.
But of course no such relationship exists. Upwork does not sell projects. Upwork provides a service that clients may use to find, hire, and pay freelancers.
Upwork allowed the original poster to find a freelancer, hire the freelancer, and pay the freelancer. This demonstrates the fact that Upwork performed its function as intended.
Upwork does not provide programming. Nor does it provide project management. The original poster will need to provide his own project management in order to achieve his goals. He may hire project managers on Upwork, or hire them from elsewhere.
re: "We've been communicating over the last week or so to correct the issues, but they've never been resolved.I was trying to contact him today to talk about it, but he's not replying to messages or calls. Which I thought was odd because he's usually reposnve to messages."
I don't work for Upwork. As an Upwork client, I have hired over 150 freelancers. Below is my personal opinion:
If this had been my project, this all would be done by now.
Because I would not have wasted time with this freelancer.
I would have hired 4 freelancers from the beginning, and I would have quickly zeroed in on this particular freelancer as the first one to fire.
re: "Then I noticed I had an alert I was billed $800+. I hadn't investigated the subject of billing when I joined upwork... but I assumed I would have to approve payment before it went through."
I'm sorry, but that is not how this works.
When you hire a freelancer with an hourly contract, you are automatically billed for the time that he logs. There is no "approve payment" step.
re: "But I'm really getting a scammed vibe right now. Am I freaking out over nothing?"
You are not getting scammed.
You are paying for a freelancer's time.
That is not a scam.
If you value the work that this freelancer is doing for you, you should continue to pay him. If you do not value the work that he is providing to you, then you should end the contract and assign the remaining work to other members of your team.
re: "I've looked at the page on how to receive a refund..."
Here is how to get a refund:
It is not a bad thing if you are familiar with these things.
BUT: I strongly recommend that you learn how to dispute a freelancer's hours, and how to request a refund, and then I recommend that you proactively decide that you will never ask for a refund, and never dispute a freelancer's hours.
This will save you time and money.
When you think in your mind that disputes and refunds are possibilities, then it leads to complacency. You think that you might be able to get money back if the freelancer completely fails to do what you wanted him to do. But would you like to know the truth? Usually you WILL NOT GET MONEY BACK.
So the "dispute" and "refund" concepts are like a mirage in the desert. The look inviting, but ultimately they will fail you. It is far safer to stop working with an underperforming freelancer than send money to a freelancer and TRY to get money back.
I really want what is best for you. I want you to have a positive outcome from this experience. I can not promise you that you will get money back, even if you apply the techniques desribed on the pages I linked to.