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Adding multiple milestones to a contract by the Freelancer

Active Member
Mor S Member Since: Dec 6, 2015
1 of 27



The ability for a Freelancer to add multiple work items (milestones) to a contract, to be approved and funded by the client afterwards, is very much neeed. This was supported on Elance.


When establishing trust and good long-term work relationships, new work items are added. We're talking about dozens of milestones added to a contract with a given client over time.


It shouldn't be the responsibility of the client to initiate these milestones.,I, as a freelancer, will have to "nag" him to do this every time. I'm in the position of serving my client and submitting the work "bill" to him, not the other way around.


Please support this process as was the case on Elance.




Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
2 of 27

Yeah, this has been a bit of a thorn in my side too. I had one customer try to fund half escrow for a writing project, and I had to tell them that the milestone needs the full funds. Have another who I think is getting a bit annoyed with me, because he funds for a few articles, I submit, and he comes back to ask for more work and I tell him that he has to release and fund another milestone. He asked me how he can just fund multiple milestones, but no can do.


Anyway, the workaround for me is to tell them to fund 1 large milestone, and then I"ll ask for half for the draft submission and then they can release the full amount after the revisions. You can ask for only partial payment from the milestone, which is the way I've handled it.


The downside to it is that I think the countdown starts over if you get permission for the full amount after already asking for half. That's what I don't like about it. So, if you ask for half and they approve, I'm not sure how it works if you then ask for the full amount after doing revisions. It should be the initial 50% should be released in 6 days and then the other half after the final approval. Maybe someone can confirm/deny what happens in that scenario.

Community Guru
Julianne G Member Since: Oct 21, 2015
3 of 27

It took one of my clients 5 days to figure out how to partially release a milestone for something that was not set up right in the beginning (because of my UpWork ignorance).  It's not terribly user friendly, and I hate the burden it places on clients to have to figure this out.  I like to provide full service, but that's difficult when the platofrm prohibits me from doing so.    


What I don't get is why the feature to have the provider manipulate/create milestones doesn't exist.  Was this a conscious decision (and if so, why oh why?) or just something they haven't gotten around to yet?  

Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
4 of 27

  "It's not terribly user friendly . . ."


Juli, I thought it was just we UK English speakers who were masters (mistresses) of the understatement. I am clearly quite wrong! Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Julianne G Member Since: Oct 21, 2015
5 of 27

It's Sunday, and I just got home from church.  I'm trying to be charitable.


Active Member
Mor S Member Since: Dec 6, 2015
6 of 27



The thing is, I have no idea what would eventually be the "total amount". No one knows the scope of the project, just the first (small) milestone.

I started with a job for $300, that grew to over $8,000 with time and dozens of small milestones that were added as new requirements were realized...



Community Guru
Rene K Member Since: Jul 10, 2014
7 of 27

The Upwork's escrow system is indeed messed up. I have clients who need many documents translated, but they cannot fund more than one milestone at a time. And they need to release it before funding the next one, without having the time to check the work.


I can't think on one good reason why the escrow system should be designed this way. But this is how it works, it's poorly designed as a lot of other things on Upwork, and Upwork's management doesn't care, at all.

"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless
Community Guru
Stephen B Member Since: Dec 4, 2012
8 of 27

I wish I had a project like that  Man Happy

Community Guru
Sandra T Member Since: Nov 26, 2014
9 of 27

I'm totally with both ideas in this thread, a) being able to set up milestones as a freelancer for the client which the client only needs to "okay", and b) being able to have multiple milestones set up under one contract.



One of my regular clients often sets up work for me, and then while I am working on that we already discuss the next workload. However, the client has to wait until the first workload is submitted before she can create the next milestone. Along with time difference and the review/revision process, the workflow is unneccesarily interrupted, while I could be working on the next assignment if there was already a new milestone in place.


After submitting work for the first milestone with a new client, the client inquired about an alternative billing method because "there is too much clicking on Upwork". The client showed understanding for my explanation why I can only continue to do the work through Upwork, but I can tell that they are not happy about having to set up a new and exact milestone for each new task. And while trying to decrease their potential annoyance, I am getting annoyed myself for being the one who has to explain all this to them and trying to rope up my perspective, their perspective and Upwork's perpective.


So yes, I'd definitely like to be able to set up or alter milestones for clients.


I would also like to see something like one bigger funded milestone that can be broken into smaller milesstones if necessary, e.g. client funds $500, I do part 1 of the assignment, submit work and request pay for let's say $200, and still have an available "submit work/request payment" button for let's say parts 2+3.

Active Member
Jessica H Member Since: Dec 21, 2015
10 of 27

I agree with what has been stated here.  I am continuing to work with a client from Elance.  We had a great working relationship:  He would tell me all that he needed and I would set up the milestones for him to approve. 


Another part of this is that I will work on a long project for him and he has smaller ones that interlace with the larger project: example - he assigns a long ebook for me to write, but I also write other smaller articles for him when he needs them. He may assign these throughout the course of writing the book.


Having the ability to set up multiple milestones here on Upwork would be a great asset.


Thank you.