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Re: Client asking Freelancer to do a Follow up Proposal - Where are these Templates on Upwork?

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Active Member
Robert H Member Since: Sep 22, 2020
1 of 11

Being new to Upwork, there are some questions I have centered on contracts and communication with the client. I have potential clients that have responded to my initial proposal.  One of the clients asked as a follow up to send a summary of what was discussed and send over a 2nd proposal for us to discuss. Where are these templates on Upwork?  If there is none then what Upwork resources should we been using?  Why wouldn't there be Upwork templates for both Direct Contracts and Hourly?  I spoke to customer service and although somewhat helpful, there seemed to be a disconnect in our communication about "contract" vs using Messaging to reply with an attached separate template that is not from Upwork. Yet I was informed that if that is used, then Upwork cannot protect the Freelancer. I understand that but then why is there no alternate template that Freelancers can use on Upwork?  I see where there is an Hourly Contract that will be available at some point but what are we to use in the meantime that is still considered legitimate looking through an Upwork lens?   Thank you.

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 11

Robert H wrote:

... why is there no alternate template that Freelancers can use on Upwork?

... but what are we to use in the meantime that is still considered legitimate looking through an Upwork lens?


You write one. There are no templates.

 

Active Member
Robert H Member Since: Sep 22, 2020
3 of 11

Yes, thank you, that is exactly what I did.  BUT again, why Upwork does not see the value of providing sample templates to share with new members is a mystery to me. Sure, there are free trials and templates all over the internet. Nevertheless, I made a suggestion to Upwork today with Customer Service about this so we will see if any action is taken seriously. There are indeed some great examples that can be customized and best sutied for particular clients.  Maybe one day someone will appreciate the need for such templates.  Am I the only one who would want Upwork to provide this, especially if they, too, are a bona fide member who has 'paid for the perks?'   

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Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
4 of 11

Robert H wrote:

Yes, thank you, that is exactly what I did.  BUT again, why Upwork does not see the value of providing sample templates to share with new members is a mystery to me. Sure, there are free trials and templates all over the internet. Nevertheless, I made a suggestion to Upwork today with Customer Service about this so we will see if any action is taken seriously. There are indeed some great examples that can be customized and best sutied for particular clients.  Maybe one day someone will appreciate the need for such templates.  Am I the only one who would want Upwork to provide this, especially if they, too, are a bona fide member who has 'paid for the perks?'   



If there are free templates available elsewhere, why would Upwork want or need to create proposal forms for freelancers? Wouldn't doing so enable incompetent freelancers to appear competent? A freelancer who has no idea how to perform at a professional level could use the templates to trick a client into thinking they were dealing with someone who had real experience only to be disappointed when it turns out that the freelancer is just using templates to fake it. That would lead to a bad client experience, and if clients are unhappy, they won't return to hire more freelancers. 

 

At least if freelancers have to go elsewhere to find templates, Upwork isn't complicit in their fake-it-to-make-it strategy and the freelancer demonstrates that they have some rudimentary research skills. 

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Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
5 of 11

Robert H wrote:

Nevertheless, I made a suggestion to Upwork today with Customer Service about this so we will see if any action is taken seriously. 


Don't hold your breath. I really wish people wouldn't waste support time with bizzare ideas like that.

 


Robert H wrote:

Am I the only one who would want Upwork to provide this,    


Seems so.

 

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Robert H Member Since: Sep 22, 2020
6 of 11

Petra, hmmm, on some level, I am certainly glad that others will find your opinions and comments entertaining. We all need to smile more during these crazy times so thanks for that. The reality though is the 'bizarre idea" that I am inquiring about is simply sharing examples that shed light on new perspectives and ideas with other Upwork Community members that might also be new to this forum. In no way, am I suggesting that we only use the templates! How silly and amateur that would be. Let me be clear, I am not new to the work itself (far from it) but rather the specific technical process as an independent freelancer that differs from other services and sites which is to be expected.  No big deal. Also, I had been given some mixed information about hourly vs direct contracts, hence the reason I decided to post a question on this ever so 'friendly' Community forum.  Nevertheless, having worked in a full time professional role for over 2 decades, I am not unfamiliar with project management and working with and supervising the creative and confident types. Then, on the flip side, also supervising the less innovative and task oriented type that often make quick irrational judgments based on their own insecurity and inexperience with anything outside the box or narrow window of diversity. Hopefully, you might reflect on that and think about how it can perhaps mute the rude button on your end and then enable you to open your mind to the fact that the template was not meant just as a tool to help one person but as an extra resource to empower a wider audience of others. And, btw, for the Upwork product team that decided to have an hourly contract...**bleep** them...what a bizarre idea, wouldn't you agree? Keep smiling, everyone.  

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Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
7 of 11

Robert H wrote:

Being new to Upwork, there are some questions I have centered on contracts and communication with the client. I have potential clients that have responded to my initial proposal.  One of the clients asked as a follow up to send a summary of what was discussed and send over a 2nd proposal for us to discuss. Where are these templates on Upwork?  If there is none then what Upwork resources should we been using?  Why wouldn't there be Upwork templates for both Direct Contracts and Hourly?  I spoke to customer service and although somewhat helpful, there seemed to be a disconnect in our communication about "contract" vs using Messaging to reply with an attached separate template that is not from Upwork. Yet I was informed that if that is used, then Upwork cannot protect the Freelancer. I understand that but then why is there no alternate template that Freelancers can use on Upwork?  I see where there is an Hourly Contract that will be available at some point but what are we to use in the meantime that is still considered legitimate looking through an Upwork lens?   Thank you.


Just in case CS didn't explain clearly. 
The entire negotiation stage that takes place via messaging is between the client and freelancer. You don't have a contract on Upwork until the client makes a formal offer and you accept it. Sometimes new freelancer begins work based on the negotiations alone and thus have no Upwork contract recourse if the client refuses to pay.

Upwork recently decided to require that all communications taking place prior to a contract occur on the Upwork platform. Phone calls, emails exchanges, etc. are forbidden. There are some exceptions for sharing information--such as filling out an NDA. Your CS rep may have been alluding to these limitations thinking that you would send your proposals outside Upwork. Or, they may have been trying to warn you that if you invest several hours creating custom proposals before you have a contract, you cannot look to Upwork for help getting paid for that investment of time. 

Finally, you and your client are bound by the TOS which provides some basic contract provisions. If you accept an offer, these are your contractual terms unless you and the client agree otherwise. You can agree to modify the client/freelancer terms (e.g. IP rights, etc.) and you can supplement the TOS terms with additional ones. If you and the client sign a separate agreement or negotiate other terms, those will govern your work arrangement (as long as they don't contradict your individual agreements with Upwork to abide by the TOS). 

A simple example would be, 
The Upwork TOS says that your fixed price payment is earned when the client accepts the work. 
You could separately agree that the client may only request up to 2 rounds of revisions before accepting the work. 

Or, you and the client might agree to a set of deadlines which if not met incur a penalty on one side or the other. 

The bottom line is, CS's job is to tell you: Don't talk outside Upwork unless you have a c contract. Don't start work for a client until you have a contract. 

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Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
8 of 11

Upwork has millions of freelancers who provide different services and have different terms and project requirements - any attempt from Upwork to provide templates would just result in complaints from clients and freelancers that the templates don't meet their needs. Anyway, I find that the vast majority of my projects are discussed and finalised over the message boards and in video calls - I've only been asked to send a formal written proposal two or three times in the past 20 years. If templates were provided, clients would start expecting me to fill them out for every project, which would just mean extra, unnecessary work for me.

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Active Member
Robert H Member Since: Sep 22, 2020
9 of 11

Thank you for your feedback, Christine. Sounds like you have been around the block one or two times already so good to hear from someone that has been doing this awhile. My point, however, seems to be getting misconstrued. Allow me to clarify. I am not suggesting in any way, shape, or form that there be templates to replace or encourage to use as is but rather as a training tool and aid to the newbies at consulting. That being said, I get your point and I appreciate the fact that some might take it literally and believe that is what they are supposed to use. Hope that helps clear up the mixed message that perhaps was conveyed with my original message. I will be sure to be crystal clear on any future questions on this forum.  Greatly appreciated. 

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Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
10 of 11

Robert H wrote:

 I am not suggesting in any way, shape, or form that there be templates to replace or encourage to use as is but rather as a training tool and aid to the newbies at consulting. 


What about the newbies at Graphic Design? And the newbies at web scraping? Data Entry? Bookkeeping? Editing? SEO? Interpreting? All the other categories?

 

Do you expect Upwork to supply templates for "Follow Up Proposals" which are really rare anyway (usually clients and freelancers discuss the job and at some point the client hires their chosen freelancer), for all their categories? 

 

Clearly you can't know this, given that you've not yet actually worked through Upwork. But in 9 years I would not once have found any use for a "template for a follow up proposals" simply because there isn't really any such thing as an Upwork function of a "follow up proposal".

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