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Afraid to Apply? Afraid to Accept? I Am

Community Guru
Jean S Member Since: Oct 22, 2007
1 of 43

Although I like the Connects System there are some disturbing things happening.

 

In the last month I've:

 

Had to really look at jobs, and from a position of fear, then decide whether or not to apply.

 

Looked at jobs that would probably be ok, but any bad feedback the client has received now turns me off completely, and yet I realize they can't be perfect all the time.

 

Turned down at least 5 job offers because I'm afraid. Afraid of the client, my feedback score and my job success score being ruined.

 

Turned down one because of a Money Back Guarantee and the way it's open to abuse.

 

Are you doing the same thing?

 

How many of us now work from a position of fear.

 

What can we do to change this !!! Or is there nothing we can do?

 

In many cases the Job Success score is the problem. 

 

When I'm hiring I read Job Success as:

 

Job Success = The number of times someone has completed a job successfully. So if someone's job success is 90%, I say to myself, wow..they only completed a job successfully 90% of the time. The poor 10% who didn't get their job completed successfully.

 

Maybe Job Satisfaction score would sound better.

 

When I'm freelancing I read it differently...but still think from a clients point of view.

 

Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
2 of 43

Hi Jean,

 

I agree with everything you have written.

 

And yes, the JS score is a big problem. Especially as nobody really knows how it comes about. And if I were to hire people I too would look at the JS and not so much at the feedback. 

 

I was afraid that sth would happen that affected my Job Success Score and I wouldn't be able to figure out what went wrong. Because it happens to so many people. And then it happened. 

This morning I discovered that my JS had actually dropped 11% to 89%. And yes, I have no idea why. All the regular reasons don't apply in my case.

And it seems there is no way to find out. My top rated badge disappeared a few minutes ago. I am furious because it seems I am expected to just s*ck it up and work on "improving my JS score". Well, there was nothing wrong with it until today.

 

I have also had the money back guarantee for a while - and was afraid like you that it is an invitation to clients to take the work, the money and your good reputation.

Because to get their money back they have to complain about you. And can leave bad feedback on top of that. What's the advantage for the freelancer?

BTW, I was under the impression that oDesk decides which freelancers get the money back guarantee - not the client. That would be outrageous, actually.

 

As long as we don't really know how things work or how our performance is being measured there is plenty reason to be afraid. 

 

You can't really take precautions if you don't know what might happen. And as far as I can tell and after reading the clients' forum it's the freelancers that have the problems on this platform.

 

Community Guru
Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
3 of 43

Jean,

 

I started with a 98% JS and now have 100%. One of my clients stated it was more realistic to see a 98% then 100%. I understood from his point of view as no one is perfect. I also know from both sides, (although I don't hire, I have helped clients pick freelancers to fill a position) 

 

As a freelancer, I know that there are things beyond one's control. My very first job on oDesk was a fixed price, and the job was never sent for me to start. I contacted the client repeatedly, and was told the first few times they were delayed but it would start soon, then no communication at all, contacted support they contacted him and  nothing twice. I ended the contract after 30 days of trying to start the job.

 

I understand from both sides you are not going to see perfect scores and things happen. Clients should realize as well that a perfect score looks good, but freelancers are human.

 

As a cleint one should realize that not everyone is going to be able to have a perfect score for a lot of different reasons.

 

As far as being scared. I am not. I look at it this way, that in the real world or the freelance world, we take a chance with getting hired on a job. We either can cut the mustard or we can't. If I fail to complete a job for whatever reason, I know I did the best I could do on it.  There are to many things that could be an issue. If i sat around worrying about that I may never work, so I focus on doing the best I can do and that is all I can do.

 

If I let JS, or any of the other factors and changes bother me I would not be able to focus on doing the best I can do. That is all there is to it. Living in fear about something that might happen is not the way I do things.

Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
4 of 43

Suzanne,

 

Until this morning I had a similar outlook. Because my score was perfect, just like yours is now. That is a very comfortable position to be in.

 

And then that changed over night and I have no idea why. I dropped from 100% to 89% - and no, none oft the obvious reasons that have been stated over and over again in these threads apply in my case. That's when you start to worry because - like you said - it's beyond my control. And nobody will explain what actually went wrong.

 

That is not how things work in a real world environment. You won't get demoted without reason and there is always a real person who will have to explain to you why that happened. 

 

 

Community Guru
Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
5 of 43

@Ela K wrote:

Suzanne,

 

Until this morning I had a similar outlook. Because my score was perfect, just like yours is now. That is a very comfortable position to be in.

 

And then that changed over night and I have no idea why. I dropped from 100% to 89% - and no, none oft the obvious reasons that have been stated over and over again in these threads apply in my case. That's when you start to worry because - like you said - it's beyond my control. And nobody will explain what actually went wrong.

 

That is not how things work in a real world environment. You won't get demoted without reason and there is always a real person who will have to explain to you why that happened. 

 

 


Actually, some jobs in the real world will let you go with a generic reason and not really explain. In my profession for instance if customers complained I may never know about it, but I can be let go for looking cross eyed at someone and they can use a generic reason of anything they would like, so even in the real world there are metrics that you are measured on especially in large corporate jobs. There are evaluations that go over the most obvious reason and things that need to be addressed, but there are other things such as customer feedback you never get to see.

 

I worked for the phone company for a few years and we got to see our kudos but we were never allowed to see negative feedback, just when we were evaluated we were told that we had x amount of customer complaints and we needed to work on ..insert whatever it was. It was never the exact reason or were we allowed to see customer feeback.

 

Other things went into personal files that they were not required by law to show us or explain to us why they let someone go.

 

I knew why I had the 98% even though it was out of my control, and feel like the person who posted that we should not be scored on something that was not in place before oDesk was acquired. My score when it was 98% was due to a first job that never got off the ground, and a second that I took the job and when presented with what they wanted me to do felt it was unethical and closed the job on my own. Explaining I did not feel right doing reviews on a product I had not tested as it was unethical.

 

Should I have been marked down for this I don't agree with oDesk on this, and have stated before several times when the JS first came out. I have an advantage that I have been with 2 of my clients long term and they have ended my contracts to give me more money or more responsibilities, so I know what my JS will stay at unless on my new contract something happens. So I guess I don't feel uncomfortable nor would I be fretting if I had a JS above 90%. I guess I have been around the forum long enough to see clients post remarks of I don't give anyone 5 stars, to I didn't leave feedback for (insert reason)

 

 

Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
6 of 43

@Suzanne N wrote:

 So I guess I don't feel uncomfortable nor would I be fretting if I had a JS above 90%. I guess I have been around the forum long enough to see clients post remarks of I don't give anyone 5 stars, to I didn't leave feedback for (insert reason)

 

 

My JS score dropped by 11% to 89% and I have no idea why that happened. I do want to know. I think that's pretty reasonable behaviour. I don't have a client that didn't leave feedback etc. 

I am a writer and a lawyer - so maybe that makes me feel differently about these things.

 

 

Active Member
Kyle V Member Since: May 3, 2015
7 of 43

This just happened to me as well, that's how I found this post.  I went through and ended several contracts that I had completed and the clients never responded to me about needing anything extra, hoping that ending the contracts would help.  I think they never responded back after getting their final design, and then never left feedback.  My score has been 88% for a while and now, without having any complaints from clients and only one uncompleted job, a client who never responded back, my score has dipped to 81%.  I'm not afraid to apply to jobs but I do worry that even with satisfied clients, my scores may decrease further.

Ace Contributor
Donna M Member Since: Aug 28, 2012
8 of 43

@Suzanne N wrote:

 As far as being scared. I am not. I look at it this way, that in the real world or the freelance world, we take a chance with getting hired on a job. We either can cut the mustard or we can't. If I fail to complete a job for whatever reason, I know I did the best I could do on it.  There are to many things that could be an issue. If i sat around worrying about that I may never work, so I focus on doing the best I can do and that is all I can do.

 


Suzanne,

 

That is true in the real world you take a job if the job does not work out there is no score that your next employer can look-up like on oDesk the only thing you have to do is account for that time at that job on your resume and you can explain to the next employer what happened (this could be done with the star ratings on oDesk) but there is no way to explain to another client what happened and why your Score is where it’s at (and as you can see by the comments freelances themselves do not know why their score is where it's at)

 

But going back to the real world jobs as you mentioned the big difference is that if a traditional job or 2 do not work out that will not prohibit you from finding other work and earning a living unlike oDesk that last client could be the one that gets you suspended on oDesk or even banned from oDesk thus preventing many Freelances from earning a living. Plus a traditional employer doesn’t take 10% of your earning for them giving you the job

 

Apples and oranges big differences

 

The other concerning thing is that oDesk is being looked at as a Job oDesk is not your employer YOU are your employer YOU are a business that takes on clients.

 

oDesk was supposed to be a platform that allowed Freelancers (independent contractors) to find clients. Odesk was to do the advertising, find clients and provide a safe platform for freelancers that is what you are paying them 10% for and since you are paying oDesk don’t you think that the JS score is over stepping the boundaries of just a platform and just a bit abusive to the very people that pay oDesk for their service?

 

Community Guru
Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
9 of 43

@Donna M wrote:

@Suzanne N wrote:

 As far as being scared. I am not. I look at it this way, that in the real world or the freelance world, we take a chance with getting hired on a job. We either can cut the mustard or we can't. If I fail to complete a job for whatever reason, I know I did the best I could do on it.  There are to many things that could be an issue. If i sat around worrying about that I may never work, so I focus on doing the best I can do and that is all I can do.

 


Suzanne,

 

That is true in the real world you take a job if the job does not work out there is no score that your next employer can look-up like on oDesk the only thing you have to do is account for that time at that job on your resume and you can explain to the next employer what happened (this could be done with the star ratings on oDesk) but there is no way to explain to another client what happened and why your Score is where it’s at (and as you can see by the comments freelances themselves do not know why their score is where it's at)

 

But going back to the real world jobs as you mentioned the big difference is that if a traditional job or 2 do not work out that will not prohibit you from finding other work and earning a living unlike oDesk that last client could be the one that gets you suspended on oDesk or even banned from oDesk thus preventing many Freelances from earning a living. Plus a traditional employer doesn’t take 10% of your earning for them giving you the job

 

Apples and oranges big differences

 

The other concerning thing is that oDesk is being looked at as a Job oDesk is not your employer YOU are your employer YOU are a business that takes on clients.

 

oDesk was supposed to be a platform that allowed Freelancers (independent contractors) to find clients. Odesk was to do the advertising, find clients and provide a safe platform for freelancers that is what you are paying them 10% for and since you are paying oDesk don’t you think that the JS score is over stepping the boundaries of just a platform and just a bit abusive to the very people that pay oDesk for their service?

 


Not apples or oranges for what I was referring to. And yes a real life job could prevent you from working another job if you had enough bad feedback when they called for a reference. Although they are a little more likely to not say something bad for fear of being sued, but even calling on references if you had enough bad jobs could prevent you from working unless you flat out said you hadn't worked before.

 

All I was stating was from my experience. It is my opinion of why I was not afraid of the JS. I will not let something concern me so much I am afraid to do anything I really want to do. I have enough confidence in my skills that if I end up with a bad client. I chalk it up to whatever. I cannot speak for anyone else. Just myself.

 

 

Ace Contributor
Donna M Member Since: Aug 28, 2012
10 of 43

@Suzanne N wrote:


Not apples or oranges for what I was referring to. And yes a real life job could prevent you from working another job if you had enough bad feedback when they called for a reference. Although they are a little more likely to not say something bad for fear of being sued, but even calling on references if you had enough bad jobs could prevent you from working unless you flat out said you hadn't worked before.

 

All I was stating was from my experience. It is my opinion of why I was not afraid of the JS. I will not let something concern me so much I am afraid to do anything I really want to do. I have enough confidence in my skills that if I end up with a bad client. I chalk it up to whatever. I cannot speak for anyone else. Just myself.

 

 


 

Employers can only say if they would hire you again or not they are not allowed to elaborate on your employment but that worry is only pretty much if you get fired if you quit a job (with notice) usually it’s not a problem ..The problem with JS is that your score is going down for things like, taking a job and then client doesn’t give you any work, there has been neither work nor money exchanged yet it still counts negatively against your JS score.

 

In traditional jobs if someone hires you and doesn’t give you work no harm nor foul and you don’t list it on a resume therefore it doesn’t hurt you it’s not even a consideration. In addition If a traditional job hires you and cause you to quit or not take another job you do have recourse since it promise to work you can go to the labor department or to the courts if need be.

 

Here on oDesk if someone hires you and you take the job and they do not provide the work not only have you wasted your time and or maybe lost out on another contract due to that client negligence but you have no recourse and as the freelancer because of the JS score you take the brunt of that clients negligence. While the client skips away Scott –Free. Do you think that’s fair??

 

There is a saying: “People Only Treat You The Way You Allow Them To

 

“You either teach people to treat you with dignity and respect, or you don't. This means you are partly responsible for the mistreatment that you get at the hands of someone else. You shape others' behavior when you teach them what they can get away with and what they cannot.”

 

This goes for employers, corporations and institutions as well.

 

In past posts I have noticed how you and other top performers on oDesk have given very important and thoughtful advice to new freelancers to charge what they are worth and not to diminish their value and not to let the clients take advantage of them.

 

So I wonder now how you can be so accepting of a system that is so clearly unjust and unfair?

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