Reply
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Reply

Can I opereate sa an agency under freelancer account?

fbogdanov
Active Member
Fedor B Member Since: Apr 26, 2019
1 of 11

Hi everyone!

If anybody can give me an answer, can I operate as an agency on Upwork not switching to agency account? I mean I'm not going to use other Upwork freelancers to work on projects. I have an offline team that can create quite a big projects for clients who we can attract at Upwork. And probably the result won't be looking like a work that can be made by one person.

 

I don't want problems with Upwork policy so that is the reason of my question: can I use only a freelancer account to take big projects which me and myoffline team will handle?

 

 

g_vasilevski
Moderator
Goran V Moderator Member Since: Mar 24, 2017
2 of 11

Hi Fedor,

 

If you would like to work as a team it's best to open an agency profile and invite your team members to join your agency. Independent Freelancers are only allowed to work as a team on fixed price contracts where the client is aware of it as well. Operating as a team on hourly contracts is not allowed. Thank you.

~ Goran
Upwork
dushyant_14
Ace Contributor
Dushyant S Member Since: Jan 28, 2018
3 of 11

Hi Goran,

 

But what if the projects are fixed priced, and the client is told in proposal or response to invite that the work will be performed by someone else?

 

The Option Service Contract Terms referes to "third party" under clause 3 which I belive refers to such situations.

 

I have been looking into such options as well, because I have some close friends who are eager to earn but their profiles are not approved on Upwork and so I have no way to get them under an agency to operate. 

 

Can I not inform a client that the work will not be performed by me, but I will be responsible for the final product & deadlines?

 

Please, let me know if I am wrong to understand and assume so. My understanding is based on multiple discussions on subcontracting for freelancers, but I am confused as to if it meant only UpWork freelancers or even an offline team.

 

Thanks for your help!

Dushyant

With Thanks,
Dushyant

- If you do not fight for yourself, who will?
tinker_bell3
Moderator
Joanne Marie P Moderator Member Since: Nov 26, 2017
4 of 11

Hi Dushyant, 

 

It is a violation to Upwork ToS that you share your Upwork account with other freelancers and have them work on the project that was originally offered to you by the client. If you like to invite other freelancers to help you complete a project, then you'll need to create an agency and the client will have to hire the freelancers through the agency. Thanks!

~ Joanne
Upwork
dushyant_14
Ace Contributor
Dushyant S Member Since: Jan 28, 2018
5 of 11

Hi Joanne,

 

Thank you for your reply. 

 

I understand that, but that would be the case when I work on hourly projects or track time and that is not to be done as it would be a violation. 

 

In a fixed price projects, no such thing will be done. No one else needs to log / access my accounts. I can be the communicating link between client and my team, and if client knows and is okay with the work to be performed by someone else, than are there any problems?

 

I also went through User Agreement clause 2.1 and the following covers such situations:

(vii) Upwork does not provide the premises at which Freelancers will perform the work. Freelancers are free to use subcontractors or employees to perform Freelancer Services and may delegate work on fixed-price contracts or by agreeing with their Clients to have hourly contracts for Freelancer’s subcontractor(s) or employee(s). If a Freelancer uses subcontractors or employees, Freelancer further agrees and acknowledges that this paragraph applies to Upwork’s relationship, if any, with Freelancer’s subcontractors and employees as well and Freelancer is solely responsible for Freelancer’s subcontractors and employees.

 

I understand this as to allow subcontracting (online or offline as it also says employees) on fixed price projects by making the client aware (and without having to provide access to the Upwork account to anyone else)

 

I think this will not be an agency as Upwork provides for using Upwork freelancers, but we can use offline teams. The pay to them will be something between me and my team, and client has to pay me through Upwork. 

 

Please, let me know if there is something else that I may have missed or is this the correct interpretation?

 

Thanks again for your help!

With Thanks,
Dushyant

- If you do not fight for yourself, who will?
tinker_bell3
Moderator
Joanne Marie P Moderator Member Since: Nov 26, 2017
6 of 11

Hi Dushyant,

 

Upwork does not prohibit freelancers who use the marketplace from subcontracting or delegating work. You'll only be able to subcontract on fixed-price contracts. For more information about your responsibilities when subcontracting please see section 2.1 of the User Agreement and Optional Service Contract Terms. Thank you!

~ Joanne
Upwork
feed_my_eyes
Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
7 of 11

Joanne Marie P wrote:

Hi Dushyant,

 

Upwork does not prohibit freelancers who use the marketplace from subcontracting or delegating work. You'll only be able to subcontract on fixed-price contracts. For more information about your responsibilities when subcontracting please see section 2.1 of the User Agreement and Optional Service Contract Terms. Thank you!


This isn't subcontracting, though - the OP states that his "team" will be handling the projects. So why doesn't he need an agency profile, in this case? It does seem like the TOS language is allowing loopholes.

vladag
Community Manager
Vladimir G Community Manager Member Since: Oct 31, 2014
8 of 11

Hi Christine,

 

I'd like to confirm that subcontracting is allowed on Upwork for Fixed-Price contract. The freelancer or the agency member is 100% responsible for the product they deliver and has to comply with all laws when they use independent contractors or employees to work on their contracts. Typically, it makes more sense to use an agency account to list multiple skills held by freelancers in an agency or on a team, and that is what is more clear to clients. However, if the account owner thinks of a profile as a way to market their business, Upwork won't prohibit them from doing that. You can find more information in this thread, discussing the same topic.

Untitled
feed_my_eyes
Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
9 of 11

Vladimir G wrote:

Hi Christine,

 

I'd like to confirm that subcontracting is allowed on Upwork for Fixed-Price contract. The freelancer or the agency member is 100% responsible for the product they deliver and has to comply with all laws when they use independent contractors or employees to work on their contracts. Typically, it makes more sense to use an agency account to list multiple skills held by freelancers in an agency or on a team, and that is what is more clear to clients. However, if the account owner thinks of a profile as a way to market their business, Upwork won't prohibit them from doing that. You can find more information in this thread, discussing the same topic.


So why does Goran say above, "it is not allowed to offer your services as a team on an independent freelancer’s profile"?

g_vasilevski
Moderator
Goran V Moderator Member Since: Mar 24, 2017
10 of 11

Hi Christine,

 

I`m sorry about the confusion with my post. At that time was not sure if the freelancer was referring to Fixed price contract specifically. I`ve also updated my post, thank you.

~ Goran
Upwork
TOP SOLUTION AUTHORS
TOP KUDOED MEMBERS