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tlsanders
Community Member

Does Anybody Work Here Anymore?

Recently, I've seen a few different clients post that they aren't getting any bids. Then, Jennifer posted that she was having trouble finding a qualified person to do data entry--one of the most glutted fields on Upwork. This afternoon, I posted a job for an illustrator to design a header graphic, and I've only received four bids (even though I sent out invitations), though I see people post every day that there are no jobs for artists/designers/illustrators here.

 

Are freelancers really leaving?

 

Is Upwork displaying standard job postings differently/less prominently since the option to pay to feature a posting was introduced?

 

What's going on?

46 REPLIES 46
tgstudio
Community Member

Iโ€™m still here! But I have noticed that for the last few months I have had zero responses for jobs I have applied for (which is not the norm for me). And I have noticed that I am receiving very few invites. 

isthiak
Community Member

I couldn't agree more! In the past, I used to get invites and responses only with an 80% success score, but now, I am consistently maintaining a 100% score, without getting new jobs. No matter how many jobs I apply to, or how many connects I use, I don't get a single response. This is really frustrating. I have been working here for a decade now. Upon completing my study, I started working full-time here. I think their new bidding process is nuts and is just a way to make some easy money. If they don't show the highest and lowest bid (price) without membership, how come are they showing the connects used to bid for a job now? Also, should not there be a limit, like before, on how many connects can a freelancer use per job? I don't think this is doing any good for clients either. 

msublette
Community Member

Nearly all of the jobs I've applied to recently have been marked private by the client.  Does that mean they aren't publically displayed?  I haven't used any connects in months and have all the work I can handle with the invites I get.  I'm not sure if that is the case for all disciplines, I'm assuming not, but it has been the case for me.  Also, a lot of my projects have been extended/expanded and one of my clients even opened new contract for a seperate project.  This is what has kept me from applying to a lot of new jobs.  

 

I have put several of my newish projects on hold until this/next week so maybe people are just on vacation or snowed in.

 

Michelle

ryan_banag
Community Member

I have the same question!

 

I started to be active again on applying for jobs under my specialty which is graphics and logo design after a 2 long years of hiatus on upwork. I have applied for about 30 jobs and guess what, no responses yet!

 

Anyone experiencing the same issue?

 

Ryan

 

 

 

Ryan, yes...a lot of freelancers are saying they're having that issue. But, then, clients are posting jobs and saying they're not getting any bids. it's very odd.

I worked over the holiday period and am taking a few days off for some much-needed R&R and to do some stuff around the house...NOT that it is stopping me from applying to the occasional GREAT looking job, though. I am also set to not available so that factors into the equation. Will be able to determine if the same is happening on my end when I am up and running again.

 

I have, however, also noticed this trend from forum posts. 

I have applied to jobs as well, and not getting any responses.

tlsanders
Community Member

FWIW, I posted to the "for hire" sub on Reddit pretty late last night and had more than 20 responses, some from highly qualified freelancers, before I got up this morning.


@Tiffany S wrote:

FWIW, I posted to the "for hire" sub on Reddit pretty late last night and had more than 20 responses, some from highly qualified freelancers, before I got up this morning.


You posted a link to your job on Reddit? 

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"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   โ€”William Ashbless

I'm getting more invitations than ever and some of them are pretty good, just not for me.  I have two clients off-platform, one of whom keeps me quite busy.  I think I've applied to three jobs in two months - got one.  Just not seeing anything especially interesting on Upwork.

No, I posted the same job description on reddit and got about 25 responses via PM.


@Tiffany S wrote:

No, I posted the same job description on reddit and got about 25 responses via PM.


 I would be a little bit scared to hire directly on Reddit.

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"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   โ€”William Ashbless

Tiffany, I think your question is timely ... more than timely in fact.

 

1. I know from discussions with buyers and clients that a number of them are turned off with the results they receive if they have checked the "recommend freelancers" tab. Buyers, especially new ones, have high hopes that the algorithm will produce reasonable results.  Put bluntly - it fails 95% or more of the time. Granted, the % of failure I cite is based on a small but very vocal sample.

 

2. Mid-November through the start to middle of January can see abnormalities in the quality of RFPs posted and in good FLer responses as well.  People have personal commitments that come into play.

 

3. U. nonsense about marking provider profiles 'private' or, more accurately, 'naughty-house-closed' within 30 days of earnings certainly does not help.  

 

 

Wendy, I wasn't aware of the "recommended freelancers" tab. I'm sure that it does as much to drive clients off the platform as the "talent specialists" do, since a new client would reasonably assume that the abysmal offerings they receive through those channels are the best Upwork has to offer.

 

There's an interesting side thing happening here, though: when I searched for illustration jobs, I couldn't find my own posting. To find it through search, I had to use a phrase from the posting. Some others on reddit who are also Upworkers tried to search for it, and couldn't find it even though they had some of the parameters (such as the fact that I'd chosen the intermediate skill level).

 

That made me wonder whether job posts that aren't "featured" are intentionally obscured in an effort to get clients to pay the $29 to promote the job. I know that for as long as I've been on Upwork, people have complained that jobs get 50 bids within the first hour or two and there's no point bidding after that. But, lately a lot of clients have been reporting that they're not getting any bids.

 

I've become one of the many clients to close a job without hiring anyone...because only four people responded to my posting in the time it took to get about 50 responses from Reddit and Craigslist.

You didn't find your job because it was sitting in graphic design (larger) category, not specific illustration category. I guess algorithm doesn't show jobs in specific category if they are not put there.

 

Upwork took a great effort to reduce number of applicants per job. This is what they aimed for. It's just those applicants aren't neccessarily top of the tops. Reducing nb of applicants while they all still have just average skillset isn't a strategy that gets clients to hire someone.

 

I would not bid because it looked like a really short gig, and I save my connects for more lucrative opportunities. Conditions that we, as freelancers have here on Upwork, affect such cautious behavior. While nothing prevents you to send dozens of proposals in a day on Reddit, here you have only 30 shots in a month.

 

Next time try to be specific about the budget, add attachment of your sketch, and write something like "if I like your work there may be more gigs later", ... you'll have more proposals. I'm sure.

____________
Don't correct my grammar!


@Wendy C wrote:

 

 

3. U. nonsense about marking provider profiles 'private' or, more accurately, 'naughty-house-closed' within 30 days of earnings certainly does not help.   


That wouldn't play any role since hidden profiles still can apply to jobs. They just don't pop up in search results.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   โ€”William Ashbless


@Rene K wrote:

@Tiffany S wrote:

No, I posted the same job description on reddit and got about 25 responses via PM.


 I would be a little bit scared to hire directly on Reddit.

 

The guy I hired directed me to a very professional website and his LinkedIn profile, which is well developed and includes several positive reviews from past clients. Payment is through the site, so the risk seems pretty low to me. If not...well...it's a small job. No one is going to starve if I'm out the deposit.


Tiffany wrote:

"There's an interesting side thing happening here, though: when I searched for illustration jobs, I couldn't find my own posting. To find it through search, I had to use a phrase from the posting. Some others on reddit who are also Upworkers tried to search for it, and couldn't find it even though they had some of the parameters (such as the fact that I'd chosen the intermediate skill level).

 

That made me wonder whether job posts that aren't "featured" are intentionally obscured in an effort to get clients to pay the $29 to promote the job. I know that for as long as I've been on Upwork, people have complained that jobs get 50 bids within the first hour or two and there's no point bidding after that. But, lately a lot of clients have been reporting that they're not getting any bids."

 

Yikes - and a major cause of concern. When a person skilled in navigating the often murky ins and outs of Upwork can not find their own job posting something is wrong.

 

Biting my tongue, or more appropriately, sitting on my hands as further comments will have me banned.

 

Rene, my comment about 'hidden profiles' was more in line with the attitude U. displays toward providers.  Yes, U. is a business; however, every successful freelancer is also a business. It would behoove Upwork to recognize that and treat us accordingly.

 

I'm all in favor of removing dead weight, however, as I've stated numerous times 60 to 90 days is realistic. 30 is indicative of nothing but unmitigated greed. 

 

Bah, humbug, "there is no Christmas or personal life" sez Upwork


@Wendy C wrote:

 

I'm all in favor of removing dead weight, however, as I've stated numerous times 60 to 90 days is realistic. 30 is indicative of nothing but unmitigated greed. 

 

In the survey thread I started about this, virtually every freelancer said they didn't object in concept but thought 45-90 days was more appropriate. More than one moderator stopped by to tell us they were listening and reporting back, but...?

The sound of dead silence prevails.

 

I'm glad you brought up that thread; I didn't want to use your name in my vent.  ๐Ÿ˜„

agree to both points.it's very quiet in my niche too other than hte usual ' want an expert for pennies' posts that only gain a tired smirk from me.

There's very little substantial out there but I'd say that will pick up in a few weeks - by which time i shall be a 'private and locked' profile again which will reult in yet anoither rant from me towards Upwork as i can't find the key anywhere...

Sometimes i wonder why i even bother....

" The bond with a true dog is as lasting as the ties of this earth will ever be "

The "fix" is simple, but would require massive reprogramming of Upwork's automated processes. The 30-day rule encourages freelancers to apply to anything even vaguely appropriate, which causes connects purchases. It also increases the garbage bids, and favors low-priced commodity services providers. This, coupled with the "Nobel Prize Winner for Minimum Wage"-style advertising drives away clients, whose expectations are too often dashed. This also discourages freelancers whose sales cycles are very long. On elance, I was awarded a job a year after the posting. Offline, my sales cycle with a new client is a minimum of four months.

 

The "Top Freelancers" tab encourages laziness in buyers. Why spend two hours going through profiles when Upwork has already done the work for me? In a fully-automated environment, rankings are driven by searchable empirical data: revenue, job success, ratings. This favors farmers, who use a North American front to win business, that is then farmed out to third-world freelancers at <$3/hour. They produce cookie-cutter (and zero value) business plans; banners that don't meet technical specs; English-fluent cold callers, tech support, etc, who know nothing about the client's Western market; this list goes on. Unsophisticated buyers tend to believe that all freelancers with the same advertised skill are equal, and buy on price. Few clients leave honest feedback anyway.

 

I keep track of something Upwork doesn't measure: award rate for jobs THAT ARE ACTUALLY AWARDED. On Upwork, I win more than half of these. On G***.com, since I became active again 15 months ago, my award rate is 100%. I never respond to any job with more than ten applications; I never respond to jobs with more than twelve invitations; I never respond to jobs for entry level; I never respond to jobs offering de facto $2/hour. The job must either be interesting, or posted by someone who obviously needs help with fundamental issues. Still, few are ever actually awarded.

 

I identify and solve business issues. I returned to Upwork last year. My first award was for an expert management consultant full time for three months. During the one-hour phone conversation exploring a fit, I identified and solved the problem. The client, even though not required to do so, hired me and paid me for an hour. That leaves me way down in the rankings. Value created is not measured.

BRAVO, Bill.  Just BRAVO.


@Bill H wrote:

The "fix" is simple, but would require massive reprogramming of Upwork's automated processes. The 30-day rule encourages freelancers to apply to anything even vaguely appropriate, which causes connects purchases.

 

This may make less sense than anything I've ever seen posted here. Randomly bidding obviously doesn't increase a freelancer's chance to earn within 30 days, and is much, much more complicated than simply taking 60 seconds to ask CS to set the profile back to public. Combine that with the fact that freelancers are well aware that those who bid a lot without getting hired get permanently removed from the platform, and it's clear to even the most inexperienced freelancer that this plan you seem to think Upwork is encouraging is the quickest way to end an Upwork career.

Maybe I'm just lucky. I turn down a lot of work and still had to work through the holidays. Yesterday, per Tiffany S.'s suggestion, I cancelled on a guy who just irritated me. Giving thanks and not questioning it.

Happy New Year, all.

re: Viginia's comment: Yesterday, per Tiffany S.'s suggestion, I cancelled on a guy who just irritated me. Giving thanks and not questioning it.

 

In working to get my Top Rated status back, I've started bailing on any client who makes me hesitate. And, as a result, I'm getting more reliable and appreciative clients ...

Denise

Thanks 

Md Mahbuber Rahman
sivavranagaro
Community Member

I wrote a pretty long post here earlier today. Has someone deleted it? Is it because of my horrible grammar?

____________
Don't correct my grammar!


@Vesna M wrote:

I wrote a pretty long post here earlier today. Has someone deleted it? Is it because of my horrible grammar?


Did you try to edit the post after you submitted it? Like fixing a grammar mistake? Smiley Tongue

 

I've tried several times to edit a post, and that seems to just remove it completely. 

________________________
Freelancing is a gamble - To win you need skill, luck and a strategy

Hi Vesna,

Your post was sent to our Spam it was not deleted, I have already returned it here.

~ Goran
Upwork

Does that mean someone has reported it? Robot surprised

____________
Don't correct my grammar!

Hi Vesna,

No it was not reported, the system automatically moved the post to our Spam Quarantine.

~ Goran
Upwork

@ Tiffany, I might have read your comment re the 30 day rule inaccurately - but Bill was slamming it. Not advocating for it.

 

 


@Wendy C wrote:

@ Tiffany, I might have read your comment re the 30 day rule inaccurately - but Bill was slamming it. Not advocating for it.

 

 


 I think Bill and I are in agreement that the 30 day rule is bad. But, he seems to be suggesting that one of its purposes is to push freelancers to bid more and more...which you and I both know is the absolute last thing Upwork wants.

Just peeking in.  It's been quite a while since I even bothered to open the forum, which says a lot about my level of activity with UW in general.  The TS invites I still get are still ridiculous, which shows that nothing is being done to improve that "service" and honestly it wastes my time now.  I've had a few really decent direct invites, but overall have just stuck to the couple of main clients I have on UW and left it at that.  

 

Like some others, I've been focusing my efforts in other areas, as the myriad changes made here on UW seem to break more than they fix or improve the service.  I've had far more success outside the platform with direct work for local businesses, other platforms, and completely different avenues overall (one being that I've gone back to working with horses again, as I've fully accepted that I am an equine addict and cannot function long without being on the back of a horse).

 

I was hoping to see that others are actually seeing things improve, but after perusing the FL and Client sections of the forum, I see nothing that denotes improvement overall.  Instead, there are clients upset with changes, FLers upset with changes, and a platform that seems more inclined to "add add add, don't sandbox it just get it live!", which does not speak of improvement either.

 

I hope everyone starts to have a better time of things.  For myself, I think my slow UW filtering has been beneficial.  I'm less irritated daily (it was the source of my of my annoyance), actually making MORE money for my time spent, and have a much more broad pool to work with.  Good luck y'all and Happy Late New Years. ๐Ÿ™‚

~I am only here when I can tolerate having my eyes blasted, my privacy treated like a joke, and my temper pushed to it's limit. For all other times, please request alternate contact methods~

Robot surprised

 

But why!?

____________
Don't correct my grammar!
kathy1010
Community Member

Tiffany, I curious about you also acting as a employer. As I indicated in another post on this thread, I have more work than I can handle and am turning quite a bit down. This is happening more and more as I'm getting lucrative blogs instead of ebooks that take me a week. Can you tell me a bit more. If I were to accept job and then turn around and offer them out, how would that work. I'm curious. Thanks.

 

 

Virginia, I only use additional writers on large jobs with ongoing clients, or really massive one-off projects. I've only done it with a couple of Upwork jobs where the client was in a time crunch and so I suggested bringing in another writer.

 

If you do it with Upwork jobs, you have to get the client's consent, and you can only do it with a fixed price job, not hourly. I have established relationships with other writers (when I hire through Upwork or another platform, it's for other services, such as transcription and design), so when I get an offer for a job I don't have time for and I have a writer who is a good fit, I tell the client that I don't have time to take it on right now, but I have a writer who does some contracting for me who I think would do a great job, and if he's amenable to her writing the pages, I will review them for legal accuracy and ethical compliance and edit before submitting.

 

I'm still taking full responsibility for the job and always the last one to touch it before it passes to the client, but it cuts down my per-page time investment significantly.

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