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Project Catalog Consultations: Feedback and Questions

We’re introducing a new feature to help you make the most of your time and expertise on Upwork so you can increase earnings, build a network of clients, and boost your reputation. With the new consultations offering within Project Catalog™, clients can book time with you for your subject-matter expertise. 

 

Check out the announcement here and let us know your thoughts about these updates in the comments below.


Thanks,
Mike J.
78 REPLIES 78
browersr
Community Member

Fundamentally I am not sure I see a huge difference between this and the regular Project Catalog. I have been using the PC since its inception purely for consultations. Going through the setup for this new Consultation feature and it looks exactly like my existing PC entry from descriptions, FAQ's, images, etc. There are some differences I understand with scheduling as an example, but unclear why this would not simply be rolled into the existing PC. I am also unclear how this will be marketed in a sufficiently different capacity than the original PC. I guess in the end I am not clear why this needed to be a subsection of the PC forcing me to simply re-add what I already had within PC. 

 

Specific to the sign-up process, two things:

 

1/ The job takes a generic title called "Consultation" versus the more descriptive way it could be entered within PC. Are we able to edit this (I couldn't find a way to do that).

 

2/ We are asked if we want a 30 minute and/or 60 minute offering. If we choose only 60 minutes, we still are asked to provide price in 30 minute increments. I can do the math here, but not clear what the client sees because 30 minutes incremental pricing is irrelevant if we select to work in hours. 

 

Lastly, I presume we deactivate our regular PC item for the same thing only after you go-live. Again though unclear how this is marketed differently. 

Hi Scott,

 

Yes, we currently offer Consultations as a project type under many categories on Project Catalog such as Wordpress. We have seen many freelancers use this project type but it is fragmented across many categories and difficult to discover for clients. Our intent with this feature is to streamline this process for clients and freelancers.

Thanks for sharing your feedback and questions. Consultations aren't yet available to clients but I understand that you have questions about how they will be displayed to clients once they are.
For now, consultations will be titled as “Consultation with [Freelancer’s Name]”. 

 

You can choose whether to offer 30- or 60-minute consultations, or both. The price will be listed per 30 minutes. The client will see the price per 30 minutes and 60 minutes separately on the project details if you offer both.

 

~ Valeria
Upwork
davydkoff
Community Member

"Fill out this form" - does not work, as in the last announcement "How to Present Military Experience on Your Resume", the Google forms are unavailable. Please make sure these forms are available to everyone. Thank you

Hi Ilia,

 

Thank you for pointing these out. The form associated with this announcement should now be visible. The link was removed from the other announcement as the linked article has not yet been published.


Thanks,
Mike J.

Hi Mike,

 

Thanks, it works now.

kim_wong
Community Member

This new feature is an excellent addition.  However, the expertise categories are too limiting.  Why is there not a general business section whereby I can add some of my specific areas of specialty?  I see categories like Music Promotion but there should be a General Business or Business Advisory category where I can then add my relevant consulting areas.

Hi Kim,

 

Thanks for sharing your interest in this new option. I'm glad you find it useful. We’re first testing this option in certain categories. However, we are planning to expand in the future and appreciate your feedback about needing a General Business category.

~ Valeria
Upwork
sparkesusan
Community Member

Every time I want to check my page, there it is. What if I don't want to set up a consultation? Can you at least give an option to get rid of that? It's huge and takes up loads of space.

Hi Susan,

I believe you're referring to the banner on your Find Work Home page. That space is intended to inform freelancers about updates, new features and options that become available. There isn't an option to hide that notification. You don't have to set up a consultation if you'd rather not to. That's entirely optional. 

~ Valeria
Upwork

Can we at least have an X to get rid of it if we aren't going to use it? Also, how about a "back to the top" button at the bottom of the page?


Susan S wrote:

Can we at least have an X to get rid of it if we aren't going to use it? Also, how about a "back to the top" button at the bottom of the page?


You might want to check out the thread on the find work page. There's a workaround posted there: try rescaling (shrinking) the window, and the design may become more to your liking.

 

2a05aa63
Community Member

When Project Catalog just started, I wanted to create a consultation project but it got denied. I'm loving the current implementation with scheduling. Trying it out!

Glad to hear you're interested, Viacheslav! Feel free to share your experience with us on this thread or here as you give this new option a try. We'd love to hear your feedback. 

~ Valeria
Upwork
darkguy2008
Community Member

First of all, thanks a lot for this new service! It looks like it could be a great addition to the platform and freelancers all over the world, especially considering the tough situation we're all in.

 

However, one of the clauses in the privacy policy was that it was not respecting my availability scope. It seems it needs to be public regardless of that setting, so that made me back up. Why can't we keep the consultation available but respecting our privacy scope? Some of us do this in our free time, but there may be people who don't understand that and this may cause to take extra risks we wouldn't like to, just to create a listing.

 

I think that if the profile is set to a specific scope, the consultation listings should respect that setting, too.

Alemar,

 

Consultations allow you to set your availability and, if you'd like, sync it with your calendar. You can set up the days and times you’re available and your time zone. You can also let clients know how much notice you need and how far in advance they can book appointments.

If you're referring to setting your Upwork profile as private, you should still be able to do that and set up a Consultation. Having a private profile will limit the discovery of your Consultation project from search however. 

~ Valeria
Upwork
mwiggenhorn
Community Member

Wow.  The platform is already full of self-represented plaintiffs looking for legal advice.  This consultation thing will work great AS LONG AS THEY SEEK ADVICE FROM AN ATTORNEY.  It is illegal for a paralegal (or any other non-attorney) to provide legal advice.  There are already paralegals on the platform engaging in the unlicensed practice of law - I can't wait to see how they jump on this.  And what if the freelance lawyer graduated law school but never passed the bar or, even worse, is disbarred?  Thanks, I'll skip this for now and make some popcorn.

Why do you think this is for legal consultation only? It's just 30 or 60 minutes of a freelancer's time of any category that a client can order.

I don't think it's  just for legal consultation.   As above, it is for  Web, Mobile, and Software Development; Digital Marketing; Legal; and Accounting categories.  This is the first time in  my memory (10+ years) that Legal has been included in a new initiative and I think there are inherent problems in that category.  Upwork has had issues in  the past with faux attorneys and I suspect that they don't vet their ideas with their actual legal team. It's just my opinion and were I working in another field, I would probably be pleased. 

No, it's not "any category." Upwork has been quite clear that they are testing consultation in specific areas, and intend to expand later.

Your question does not illuminate a valid concern about a category that is specifically included.

Thanks for sharing your concerns, Mary. Similar to Catalog Projects, Consultations listings will be reviewed before being posted. If the team finds that a Consultation violates Upwork TOS, it will not be published.

~ Valeria
Upwork
nabila_pervaiz
Community Member

This one-on-one Virtual consultation feature is best only for IT & Marketing professionals. I find no benefit for me as a Medical Writer. I wish there could be a general category as well instead of the only specified area of expertise. 

Upwork has been quite clear that they are testing consultation in specific areas, and intend to expand later. (They have done this in the past—it's an established pattern. They are being rather more upfront and transparent about it than usual.)

Oh!
Then, I'm hoping to get my hands on this feature soon. 🙂

shorif_muhammad
Community Member

That would be another great feature of Upwork and honestly love it. 

2a05aa63
Community Member

I just got denied with a humangous text about what to fix. Seems to be a lot harder than expected, and I'm not willing to spend that much time for this feature.

Hi Viacheslav,

 

I checked with the team and it sounds like the reason for the denial was the cover image. Generally, the cover image should speak to the work and make it easy for someone to browse. I hope you give it another chance and resubmit your consultation with another image. 

~ Valeria
Upwork
decodistny
Community Member

Interested in the new consultation feature overall, but this gives me pause:

 

"By submitting this project and activating it, I understand that it will appear in Upwork search results visible to the general public and will show up in search engine results, even if my profile visibility is set to Private or Upwork Users Only."

 

Why does my right to privacy disappear?

Good catch!

The short answer is that the catalog, in all its manifestations, is a marketing tool.

Insofar as Upwork is a consignment shop, or a bazaar, we each control the visibility and availability of our individual booths/displays/offerings.

Upwork is also a big-box store, with combination display windows and express/impulse buy area: the  catalog. 

We have the ability—I would not call it a right—to control visbility and access for our individual sales areas. If we opt into the public display/express sales feature, we trade away some of that control.

That's right - it seems that Upwork intends to ignor and trade away users' privacy preferences for the sake of marketing and SEO. Maybe I'm wrong?

Upwork is an unprofitable company sustained by investor faith in its business model (as was Amazon for most of its existence).

 

It offers benefits to freelancers; otherwise those of us who are succeeding here (and elsewhere) would have left. And it is helpful to keep in mind that however they spin new features nominally designed for freelancers, every business decision they make is about nudging their large revenues over into profit, and consequently sustainability.

 

They need more client spend, and less freelancer expense. That's the basis for every new initiative, and the guiding principle for how it is implemented.

dushan_pejchev
Community Member

Hi guys, I wanted to ask about the Project Catalog Consultations feature. My niche is in the Art/ illustration industry so I started creating the Catalog and on the first step ‘Project overview’ section I couldn’t find anything related to my field. It says that it is mandatory to pick at least one of the topics under the ‘Areas of expertise section. Is there a possibility to make some upgrades?      

Hi Dushan,

 

It looks like the option isn't yet available in your category. Apologies for any confusion the promt has caused. We are planning to expand this option to more categories soon though! So stay tunned!

~ Valeria
Upwork

Thank you Valeria!

sangeetaseopro
Community Member

may i ask someone to please have a look and tell us how to setup and use this feature.

Hi Sangeeta,

 

If consultation projects are available to you, you’ll see an invitation to create a consultation in the announcement banner on your Find Work Home page. Choose the Set Up a Consultation button to begin. You may also receive an email with this invitation. You can also choose the Set Up a Consultation option on your project dashboard.

 
~Andrea
Upwork

Clearly All seller must have seen this Upwork Consultation Feature Appearing on their Notification and Project catalogue section!

 

I think this is another form of empowermement for Every Freelancer To charge buyers for their time on one on one consultation because regardless of the time wasted some clients may just be using it to take advantage of getting info from you and end up on another freelancing platform!

 

Great job as Always UPWORK COMMUNITY!

mazen-mikati
Community Member

Hi there,

 

Today I wanted to use the consultation new feature. So went to set up a consultation, but I couldn't find under "Areas of expertise" any skill related to Art and Design!! Thus I couldn't set up the consultation. 

 

So why upwork didn't any skill related to Art & Design?? 

Hi Mazen,

 

It looks like the option isn't yet available in your category. Apologies for any confusion the promt has caused. We are planning to expand this option to more categories soon though! So stay tunned!

~ Valeria
Upwork
olenal
Community Member

Hi, 

I am a presentation designer. I published several projects and see a weak place in this system. The matter is that the project starts immediately, without freelancer approval, and this is not correct. It leads that I have a surprise with inappropriate contract which leads to the possibility to have negative feedback and decrease the rating. 

For example, the most popular one is CV design. And the situation appears many times: on Friday evening someone buys project  (timing was 1 then I changed to 2 and 3 days). So It assumes that it is very comfortable - a person sent CV on Friday and receive a ready document on Monday, having fun through the weekend and do not care about anything. And I am ready for this situation. But I need to check the draft, to be sure that the format is appropriate like if 1 page of doc to redesign is chosen person send exactly one page, and to speak to client as designing the doc meaning making visible main messages. And in most cases drafts are not appropriative, people do not respond on questions. I know that it is possible to refuse within 24 hours without any penalties, though I always try to write person to make communication and to receive the info and sometimes forget about timing. But I guess it will be honest for freelancers to make the additional step of materials checking. The client can send any doc, even an empty file, and from the view of Upwork, the requirements are satisfied. But a freelancer should check docs and ask questions and only after that mark that requirements are done and a project can start.

 

This is a new system and I guess the changes for the better are still possible. 

Olena