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Are Agencies on Upwork fair competition?

reichstephen
Community Guru
Stephen R Member Since: Jun 19, 2015
1 of 16

I have noticed today that 3 of the jobs I applied to have been awarded to Agencies.

 

If you see a Agency bid for a job, do you waste your connects on that job proposal?

 

If you are an Agency does the Agency Manager get connects to bid on jobs?

If the Agency Manager has 5 artists working for him under his his Agency umbrella does he get all their connects to bid on jobs? Must be nice to look for jobs all day and farm them out to your stable of designers. One agency i saw had 78 active jobs. 

 

Not sure how any individual freelancer can level the playing filed. 

Any advice fellow Upworkers?

 

Thank you

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

suznee
Community Guru
Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
2 of 16

I believe there is no competition with agencies unless you choose there to be.  Many jobs only want a single freelancer. 

 

Agencies only get x amount of connects per month you can read more 

 

How many Connects does my agency get?

 

Your agency automatically gets 60 Connects per month on the Agency Basic (free) plan. This plan is meant for single-person agencies and therefore does not allow you to add team members, apply to jobs on behalf of team members, or assign work to others.

If you want to add or continue supporting multiple team members, your agency will need to upgrade to the Agency Plus plan. For $20/month, your agency will get 80 Connects per month (shared among all team members), the ability to purchase additional Connects (for $1 per Connect), and the ability to roll over up to 160 unused Connects to the next month.

 

https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211062928-Connects-Memberships-FAQs-for-Agencies?flash_...

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
3 of 16

Not sure about other sections, but individuals are preferred in the writing section. I love it. I've seen a few requests that say "No agencies."

yitwail
Community Guru
John K Member Since: Feb 17, 2015
4 of 16

One downside of an agency, especially a large one, is that the client has no control over who actually works on the project, so results can vary depending on whom the agency assigns to a project. I personally don't bother checking if agencies have submitted proposals for a job, but if that's a concern then state in your proposal that with an agency the client has no way of knowing she or he will be getting an experienced freelancer or a newbie.

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
5 of 16

@John K wrote:

One downside of an agency, especially a large one, is that the client has no control over who actually works on the project, so results can vary depending on whom the agency assigns to a project.


 That should not happen. If it does happen, the agncy is in breach of the terms of service which state that even under an agency, the client hires the freelancer or freelancers who will work on their project, and nobdy else may touch the client's project. The agency gets paid and the agency is responsible, but according to the rules the client still hires each freelancer, just through the agency.

 

Personally I don't think agencies have an advantage, quite the opposite as most clients prefer individual freelancers over freelancers who work through an agency.

 

As a client I do not hire agency freelancers. Why should I pay more than the freelancer is getting?

 

Say I am willing to pay $ 20 an hour.  I want a $ 20 an hour freelancer, not a $ 15 an hour freelancer and pay some middleman I neither need nor want $ 5 (or more) for simply existing ...

blastofflabs
Community Guru
Steve B Member Since: Jul 1, 2015
6 of 16

I believe we individual freelancers have almost an unfair advantage over agencies.  Primarily because our quality is higher since we do the work directly for each client. 

geigerj
Community Guru
Julianne G Member Since: Oct 21, 2015
7 of 16

 

_________________________________________________
@Steve B wrote:

I believe we individual freelancers have almost an unfair advantage over agencies.  Primarily because our quality is higher since we do the work directly for each client.

_____________________________________________________

I'm an agency, so... I offer lower quality than you do?   

 

 

suznee
Community Guru
Suzanne N Member Since: Aug 15, 2012
8 of 16

@Julianne G wrote:

 

_________________________________________________
@Steve B wrote:

I believe we individual freelancers have almost an unfair advantage over agencies.  Primarily because our quality is higher since we do the work directly for each client.

_____________________________________________________

I'm an agency, so... I offer lower quality than you do?   

 

 


Julianne,

 

I don't think he meant that towards most agencies, but on Odesk especially agencies had a really bad reputation for a long time. I believe it was a blanketed statement. Most agencies did not have a very good reputation.

 

I can see where an agency could be beneficial to someone if they needed something done pronto and needed a large team. Customer service is one of those areas where they need multiple freelancers. But with some of the larger agencies the point of you don't know who is working on your project is a good example.  

reichstephen
Community Guru
Stephen R Member Since: Jun 19, 2015
9 of 16

What bothers me from a graphic artist background is that if you have eight artists working for said Agency they ALL HAVE THE SAME PORTFOLIO? I call that fraud.

 

Today i saw some freelancer with no Profile overview with the same portfolio as his Agency. 

 

I really dont think many clients know the difference. 

 

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
10 of 16

Stephen, they may be an Elance migration. The rules were very different there.

 

Report to Support, let them deal with it.

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