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Calendly and Other Third-Party Software



Lately I've been getting invites/responses from prospective clients to book interviews via third-party software such as Calendly.  I advised the client via UpWork's portal that I am unable to meet them on a third-party Zoom.  Calendly requires an email addres, and since I am unable to share my email address aprior to the contract, I used a placeholder email in order to book the time slot only. 

I also linked the client to  UpWork's Contact Information Sharing policy, and I advised them I must communicate with them via Zoom, etc. on UpWork's portal until the contract starts.

I just had a client that missed meetings on two consecutive days even after I advised him of all of this. 

Am I missing something?  I thought this was the correct policy.  I also had another client that ghosted me after I advised them of the contact information sharing policy and that I couldn't meet with them via another third-party calendar site.  It was not Calendly. 

If it's okay to meet on these Zoom calls via non-UpWork channels prior to the contract, then please let me know.



Community Member

Hi Preston,

Thanks for your quick response.  I looked at the links you sent, and it looks like I was correct.  We aren't supposed to use Calendly, etc. 

I've been knocked out of the running for a few jobs at an early stage because of this, and it's disappointing to be disqualified for following the company's policies.

Since I'm the freelancer who is abiding by UpWork's policies, it makes me appear difficult when other freelancers are doing the 3rd pary Zooms and booking the jobs. 


Can UpWork HQ make the contact information sharing policy more prominent for the prospective clients when they sign up to become clients?  I have had to link 90 or 95% of the prospective clients that I speak with to the contact information sharing policy.  Many of the prospective clients appear to either be surprised by the policy or unwiling to comply with the policy. 


This issue is hurting some of the freelancers.



I think a big "gray area" is whether or not the current rules for this make sense, or should be changed. You are asking about a topic that many freelancers think is problematic.


Upwork seems to not have any scheduling utility, and seems to disallow using a common scheduling utility (Calendly).


Seems there is room for improvement on this front.

Devian, this policy was established about a year ago despite vehement protest by many of us. It is a real problem and all we can do is continue to call out clearly and specifically how it hurts the very FLs UW should be supporting. It ostensibly discourages people taking work off the platform and also protects newbies from predatory "clients" who lure them off the platform for targeted scams. I'm hard put to believe that people willing to cheat are being deterred by this rule. And one only has to stroll through these discussion boards periodically to see that newbies who don't read the other rules don't read this one, either. Meanwhile, the rest of us are left to weather the fallout: negotiating extra, unnecessary friction in conversations with prospective clients and sometimes losing out on opportunities to less scrupulous peers.



This recent thread may be of interest to you. 

Thanks Phyllis.  One of the links that Preston sent showed that UpWork was working on a calendar system.  That was over a year ago.  I will be glad when they get that up and running.  I just wanted to double check with the UpWork community, because this has happened so much that it made me question my own interpretation of the policies.  Oh well, onward and upward. 

Thanks again.

Community Member

This is a crazy situation. Upwork badly needs to provide its own on-site alternative to Calendly, where you can schedule an interview without sharing contact info. 



Thanks for your response, Robert.  One of the links that Preston sent said that UpWork was working on a calendar function, but that message is more than a year old.  I wish UpWork would at least reimburse me for the connects that I lost to jobs that I had no real chance at.  They can look at my message string to see which candidates were unwilling to follow the policy, and I'm being penalized for following company policy.  

Thanks again for your response.  

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