On June 26, 2019 Upwork's product team hosted a webinar to provide an overview of the new agency profile and to help agencies update to the new profile format, as announced in our forum post here. To highlight the questions and answers more broadly, we’ve summarized the Q&A session from the webinar below. For additional information on agency profiles, read this help article and check out our Hiring Headquarters article on how you can create an impressive agency profile.
New Agency Profile
Do you have any suggestions for creating a great agency profile?
Is it required to update both the agency profile and individual agency member profiles?
We do suggest reviewing your member profiles for completeness and accuracy. An agency member will be featured below the agency in search results and information from member profiles factors into your agency showing up in search results. Clients may also review individual member profiles to determine if an agency is the right fit for their project. Consider using Specialized Profiles as a way to better highlight agency members’ relevant skills to prospective clients.
Will we be able to specify which freelancer profile is linked to the agency (e.g. the relevant freelancer profile linked at the bottom of the agency search result)? Does it link to the general profile or can it be a specific specialized profile?
The relevant freelancer link will take the client to the freelancer’s general profile. You are not currently able to choose which profile it is linked to.
Can the portfolio include work history previous to joining Upwork or from direct contracts?
You can add portfolio items for work completed outside of Upwork. Pro tip: Be sure your clients are ok with you publicizing the work.
What are the optimal image sizes for the banner and company logo on the new agency profile?
For the banner, the minimum size requirement is 1600px by 160px. We recommend using a high-resolution image with a width of 3200px and above. The banner will scale based on the size of the browser window, so we also recommend using your brand colors or simple visuals and avoiding text on the image.
For the logo, the minimum size requirement is 250px by 250px.
Which video services are supported for adding a video to the new agency profile?
You can embed videos from Youtube or Vimeo.
Can I include a link to my company’s website in the agency profile?
There is a place on the agency profile for the website to be added, but this will only be visible to Upwork Enterprise clients. You cannot include the website address anywhere else in your profile.
Client feedback and reviews seem to contribute to clients’ decisions on whether to hire an agency or not. Shouldn't the work history be featured prominently?
We agree that feedback and reviews are important. This is why we have given “Work History” its own tab alongside Overview and Portfolio, making it easier for clients to find on the profile. All of these elements will factor into many clients’ considerations when hiring.
What's the purpose of the new Services section?
The new Services section helps clients to quickly understand the range of services your agency offers. You can add up to 10 of your primary services and link each to a related project from your portfolio. You also have the ability to describe your company’s approach, specialties, and experience that could be too detailed for your written Overview section.
Our agency has developed some products, where can we feature them?
The portfolio section is a great place to display the products you’ve created and provide information on the projects. Be sure your clients are ok with you posting the work.
Is there a way to bulk change the profile visibility of agency members with the new agency profiles?
The visibility of agency member profiles must still be changed individually by going to Find Work > Agency Roster.
How can I change or remove a showcase project from the Agency Profile Services section?
To change the showcase project, hover over the Service to be edited and click on the pencil icon that appears. Click continue on the bottom of the “Edit agency service” pop-up. Then select the new portfolio item to be showcased. Click save.
To remove a showcase project, currently you must delete and re-add the service. You can delete the service by hovering over it and clicking the garbage can. We know this is not an ideal solution and we’re working to make this process more efficient.
Line breaks are not working in the portfolio item description so the text looks messy. Will this be fixed?
As of June 10th, 2019, this has been resolved. Line breaks are now working properly.
Working as an Agency
Can I open one contract for multiple freelancers?
For hourly projects, each freelancer must have their own contract. However, fixed-price contracts can be established under the Business Manager and carried out by multiple freelancers. Pro tip: Make sure your client understands if you won’t personally be doing the work.
Can a freelancer who does not have an approved profile work as part of an agency?
New freelancers added to the agency as exclusive agent freelancers will automatically be approved to work on contracts through the agency.
How can I pay my agency member using Upwork?
It’s not currently possible for agency owners to pay their members directly on the platform. These payments must occur outside of Upwork.
Is there any way to know if the client has viewed our proposal?
There is not a way to know if a client has viewed your proposal.
Who will be given preference in search results: an agency or a freelancer?
Our goal with search results is to present the most relevant matches to the client, which takes into account keywords and client-set filters.
Do we need to pay for Connects now?
Connects now cost $0.15 (USD) each and are sold in bundles of 10, 20, 40, 60, and 80. Free Connects are no longer included with the Agency Plus membership. You can learn more about Connects here.
Do new freelancers on Upwork receive connects or do they need to buy them?
New freelancers will receive 20 free Connects once their profile is approved. After that, Connects must be purchased.
What are the benefits you are providing with new paid connects process?
With the new Connects system our goal is to help professionals win more projects. With paid Connects we expect freelancers will submit fewer proposals, ones that are more tailored to their skill-sets and the requirements of the project. Thus helping clients find more qualified candidates and reducing the friction caused by the high number of proposals sent by freelancers who may not be qualified or have the right skills for the projects they’re applying to. We are confident this will increase hiring rates and make it easier for clients to identify high-quality talent and for high-quality talent to connect with great clients.
When will we have the option to have contracts under the agency itself and not under the agency member?
While we do not have a timeline for this feature, we recognize this as a need and hope to address it in the future.
Will there be any changes to how the Job Success Score (JSS) is calculated for agencies?
The agency profile update does not include any changes to the JSS calculation.
Clients are uncomfortable working with agencies, how can this be changed?
We have heard that some clients are uncomfortable working with agencies because the person they speak to initially ends up not being the person they work with to complete the project. While it’s important that agencies are introducing their teams, we also wanted to help boost the success of agencies by other means. The new agency profile is the first step in building additional client trust in agencies. By differentiating agency profiles from freelancer profiles, there is not only a visual difference, but also more robust content. Where freelancer profiles (esp. specialized) are targeted to specific skills, an agency can speak more broadly to the breadth of services offered. We want to highlight the fact that agencies are better equipped than individual freelancers to offer a complete package of services.
What would make a client choose an agency over a freelancer?
Agencies are often better positioned to handle large, complex projects; longer-term projects, or those that may require follow-on work; and big projects with tight deadlines. Agencies are great when a company has a project that requires a number of skill sets. For example, if a company needs a web-site created, they may need a developer, designer, and copywriter. Rather than hiring three separate freelancers, they can hire one agency to get the job done. This also alleviates the stress of project management as the agency will usually coordinate the work of its members.
Do you have a public roadmap of new features that are in the pipeline for agencies?
We do not make our feature roadmap publically accessible. We are committed in improving how we connect our clients and agencies together on Upwork.