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How old is too old?

Community Guru
Anthony H Member Since: Feb 22, 2017
1 of 6

How old is too old for a job posting? If I see a posting has been pawed over for three hours by the rest of the half-crazed Humperdincks out there, I consider that a day-old bagel, not worth putting in the toaster. 

 

Is that about right? Three hour shelf life ... then fahgedaboutit?

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 6

Anthony H wrote:

How old is too old for a job posting? If I see a posting has been pawed over for three hours by the rest of the half-crazed Humperdincks out there, I consider that a day-old bagel, not worth putting in the toaster. 

 

Is that about right? Three hour shelf life ... then fahgedaboutit?


I don't even look.

As freelancers are not showing in order of when the proposal was made, it does not matter.

You might be the last to apply but showing at the top, or the first to apply and showing at the bottom.

 

I also don't worry about the number of proposals. There may be 5 now, but in a few hours there may be 50.

 

To say "no point after 3 hours" is crazy...

 

Community Guru
Mary W Member Since: Nov 10, 2014
3 of 6

I think it depends on your specialty.  My niche is pretty small and I get often invited to jobs that have been posted for several days,presumably because the proposals weren't appropriate or because there weren't any.  Sometimes they're good jobs, sometimes not.

Community Guru
Renata S Member Since: Jun 10, 2014
4 of 6

Mary W wrote:

I think it depends on your specialty.  My niche is pretty small and I get often invited to jobs that have been posted for several days,presumably because the proposals weren't appropriate or because there weren't any.  Sometimes they're good jobs, sometimes not.


My niche varies, depending on how broadly I want to cast the net for the day. And if the client proposes a reasonable budget, there are usually 20 to 50 applicants vying for the project within the first hour. The thing is, to the uninitiated, the entry requirements for my field are often perceived as minimal. So while there may appear to be a lot of applicants, the bulk of them are submitted by half-crazed Humperdincks. In reality, in a field of 20 to 50, or even 50+, I might be one of only two or three viable applicants who have submitted proposals. And I might even be the best person for the job. Heck, I might even be the only one who speaks English. 

While I do make a mental note of the number of applicants when I'm looking at the post, I don't use that as the only metric for making the decision to send a proposal. I look at the posting fit. 

You might think you're gambling by applying to a job with a lot of proposals, but I've found that applying sometimes has some unexpected payoffs. Clients who can find my application in the 20-50 pile are usually the ones I want. In my experience, they've been ones who can read, think and assess. Those are all valuable qualities in a client. 

Community Guru
Anthony H Member Since: Feb 22, 2017
5 of 6

OK, thanks Renata.

I think I'm generalizing from a reasonable starting point, but sometimes logic isn't valid. My reasoning starts with the success I've had when jumping on a job right right after it's posted. I have a very high success rate there. So, I just figured backwards from there, figuring the longer a job posting is up the lower my chances of success.

But, I like your answers. They make sense, especially if you can have an indication that many of the proposals could be from unqualified candidates.  

Community Guru
Renata S Member Since: Jun 10, 2014
6 of 6

Anthony H wrote:

OK, thanks Renata.

I think I'm generalizing from a reasonable starting point, but sometimes logic isn't valid. My reasoning starts with the success I've had when jumping on a job right right after it's posted. I have a very high success rate there. So, I just figured backwards from there, figuring the longer a job posting is up the lower my chances of success.

But, I like your answers. They make sense, especially if you can have an indication that many of the proposals could be from unqualified candidates.  


Hey Anthony, 

It's hard to know what works and what doesn't. I've had clients call me more than a month after a job was posted. In general, yeah, I guess it works to get there as early as you can, but it's just one more thing you can end up turning into source of stress. 

In the broader world of job hunting, I know there are always people who have advice about what not to do or which approaches are a total waste of time. The thing is, I've landed jobs using a lot of approaches people said didn't work. I just used all of them simultaneosly. Or maybe I had time on my hands because I was looking for work and doing something, even something stupid, made me feel like I was doing something?

I don't know that there is anything like a valid logic. Most of it is being in the right place at the right time with a workable skill set or the ability to explain why and how you can adapt the toolkit you have to the task at hand. So you're right to generalize about the timing aspect. That said, I think I might have been hired by someone who is now a long term client because I had previous experience working in her area AND her best friend's first name is the same as mine. You can't anticipate stuff like that. 


But luck trumps logic at certain moments. I once got a job because I had previous experience working at a store that sold homebrewing supplies. Since the company owner encouraged us to try out the products as much as possible so we could help customers with their questions, this meant I had acquired a good knowledge of different beer styles and learned how to brew beer (which also made it an ideal student job). This knowledge had nothing to do with the job I was interviewing for, but it did make me the candidate who had the most interesting potentially transferrable skills in the eyes this employer. 

Back to the timing issue, there are fast and slow jobs on UpWork. Sometimes the fast ones are a sign of disorganization on the client end, so it pays to tread carefully. Desperate people aren't the easiest to work with. 

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