An agency owner or manager needs to send you an invite to join an agency. Freelancers can contact agencies on Upwork and there's no application process. You can read more about Agencies in this Help article.
Agencies are designed to be used by a team of freelancers whereas Freelancer profiles are used individually. If you're looking to work as a team, which does have certain advantages, than you'll find the agency model beneficial. Since these two contexts differ in purpose, benefits depend on the end result you're looking to achieve.
Thank you, is there a place that lists agencies willing to take applications? I am still looking over the pros and cons, but I know in other busiensses, agencies can be an important way to find the right clients.
Unfortunately we currently do not have the list of agencies. The only way to join an agency is to be invited by an agency administrator. Your relationship with them (as an employee or contractor) is managed privately outside of Upwork.
Thanks, I guess I won't worry about this issue unless I am invited. I ust wonder how they find people or if it is solely people they know. Is there something I could do to "stand out" to them?
Kambria, I would think twice before considering joining an agency. It is not uncommon for Upwork clients to specify in their job postings that they will work with independent freelancers only. I can see where you might think it would help you get established and get more work, but in this context that is not always the case--you may actually find the opposite effect.
there is no way for a Freelancer to contact any agency
***Join an Agency
The only way to join an agency is to be invited by an agency administrator. Your relationship with them (as an employee or contractor) is managed privately outside of Upwork. ***