🐈 Community
» Forums » Freelancers » Client playing SAFE - requiring the Freelance...
Page options
Community Member

Client playing SAFE - requiring the Freelancer to do a sample design before get hired.

Hi! I have been a Freelance Graphic Designer for quite some time now.

And I can say that I am a veteran here in "Odesk".


I just want to open this topic for a Graphic Designer like me.
Is there a possibility that the Upwork team can filter the clients

who require a sample design before they hire the Designer?

This is unfair to us, as a Freelancer.


I am receiving an invitation like this, frequently.
They (Clients) require the Designer to work without paying for it.
I mean, they can get an idea or the design itself without paying?
They are playing safe.


I am also concern with the newbie Graphic Designers, that they will

work for a sample design without hiring them. But in the end they

will not get hired because there is a nicer design out there done by

other applicants or other designer that the client sent an invitation.


I hope the Upwork team can be aware with this matter and make a move.


"Concern Graphic Designer"

Community Member

Yes, in some cases they might be playing safe.  In many cases evenif they like your design they will still it and ask someone to do like that for half the price.  I see that in the space I am playing.  I generally do not waste my connects by applying.

Hi Sir, thank you for replying to my concern. I frequently experice this instance by receiving an invitation.

And they do the magic. As a expericed Freelancer, I reply to them and let them realize that this is not how Upwork works. I let them know that they need to hire first before they get a design..


I hope the Upwork will find way to make this matter fair to both Freelancer and the Client.

Community Member

They are NOT playing it safe. They are trying to trick you into doing the job for free. 


They are also violating Upwork's rules. Flag the job or message where they ask for free work and Upwork will take care of it.

Should I report these kind of clients to the support team?

Yes. If they ask for free work right in the post, just flag the job posting. If they ask in a message, you can either flag the message or open a ticket to report it.

Thank you Tiffany. Though they are just asking for a sample design, it still annoys me. 

Community Member

Hey Ryan,


As a graphic designer myself, I've fallen into that trap many times before especially when I first started on odesk/Upwork. New freelancers are so eager to get work/feedback to get established on the platform, that they are willing to take the chance... but it isn't worth it and as Tiffany said, against Upwork TOS. Just flag it and move on... If you are an established freelancer on the platform, your feedback and portfolio should be enough to prove to clients your skills and if you are qualified for the job.



@Ryan L wrote:

Thank you Tiffany. Though they are just asking for a sample design, it still annoys me. 

 The way to counter it is to refer them to your profile so they can take a look at your portfolio and then say "... of course I can also create a custom sample for you, maybe 2 or 3, depending on what vision you have. My fee for those would be $ XX.XX each, or I am happy to work on an hourly bases at my standard hourly rate, Which would you prefer?"


Unless they are really blatant about wanting the work for free I pretend to assume they would of course want to pay for it, which avoids awkward confrontations and may well have an educational effect as well.


If it is really blatant just flag as inappropriate and move on.

Latest Articles
Upcoming Events
Apr 25
Upwork Virtual Community Hour
Community Hour English
Featured Topics
Learning Paths