jsutherland
Member

Clients With No Feedback

Gaynor writes in another post:

 

We've found good performing freelancers prevent this by being selective about their jobs and clients,."

 

To me this says I should never work with a Client that is new to  Odesk because as an experienced freelancer I need to be very choosy in order to protect my reputation on Odesk and the new client offers me no clue as to how the job will go.

 

For this reason I no longer will even consider working with a new Client with no feedback history whatsoever.

 

Although this doesn't seem right, it's far more important to protect my reputation on Odesk than it is to take a risk with an unknown.

 

By being selective as he suggests, it seems to be my only option with new clients.

 

As well, Fixed Priced jobs are so risky now that I hesitate to take any of them which is a shame as they're perfect for me. I'm disabled and working hourly is very difficult for me, but with Fixed Price Jobs I could work at the job for 1/2 hour, rest and then go back to it when ready. More jobs now seem to be hourly now whiich is too bad.

16 REPLIES 16

Hello!

 

Although fixed price jobs may represent a risk, you can still reduce the risk factor by carefully selecting your clients: check out their work history on oDesk, previous jobs, feedbacks and so on. If they always paid their freelancers in the past, chances are that you'll get paid as well. 

 

Further on, you can still take a little risk and give new clients a chance (obviously, be careful and check that they have a verified payment method before accepting to work for them). Also, avoid "too-good-to-be-true" deals: they ARE too good to be true, 99%. 

 

According to my experience, you can still find good clients out there, even on fixed price projects. 

 

I wish you good luck,

 

Mattia

“Go then, there are other worlds than these.”
―Stephen King, The Gunslinger

What they're really saying is   " freelancers have to be good...and the way they can be good is by avoiding bad clients, because clients can be whatever they want "

Thanks Mattia, but the risk with a fixed priced job is just too high when it involves my reputation. Unless a client has a proven track record of:

 

1. 5 Stars given by freelancers they hired, for each job they have posted

 

2. Written feedback from the freelances, for each job they have posted.

 

Then the risk is too great. It's unfortunate it must be this way as it's all subjective, but considering the letters going out threatening freelancers, I must hold them to the same standards I'm being judged by. 

 

This leaves any new client with no history and new to Odesk little chance of getting my skills and and my application. They may be a good client, but there is just no way I can possibly risk my reputation. Sad, but reality.

I see your point here, and totally respect your thoughts.

 

However, I don't believe that one or two bad feedbacks can really "destroy" your reputation. I used to have a 5.00 star rating, but now it's slightly lower than that... I'm still finding good clients and jobs anyway. Unless you have A LOT of bad feedbacks, I think you shouldn't worry too much about reputation. Moreover, a perfect 5.00 stars rating over dozens of jobs seems a little suspicious to me... but I guess it's a matter of opinion: if you don't feel ok with something, just avoid it.

 

 

“Go then, there are other worlds than these.”
―Stephen King, The Gunslinger

Hi Mattia,

 

A job history of a few dozens or so with 5 stars is not that suspicious (not even a little) if the freelancer has a record of going above and beyond what the client asks for. I've completed more than 90 projects, some of which are long-term and only got 3 non-5 star feedbacks (4.7, 4.9 - who later asked for a refund for unfair reasons, and a 1 - who was later found out to be running a refund scam).

 

This is not just me. Quite a number of the active forum members have perfect 5 stars and you can see from their posts that they deserve it. In fact, at one point, even Jean have 25 consecutive 5 stars before she got into a series of no-feedback jobs and then the client who gave her a less than perfect score.

 

IMO, saying things like that makes you sound bitter because you don't have the same (YET). You have a track record of 5 consecutive 5 stars so far, should I get suspicious of you when you reach about a dozen consecutive 5 star ratings?



❄❄❄ Just A Forum Contributor --- This isn't against forum guidelines ❄❄❄

I agree on some points with Mattia and Stephen.

Moreover,and from my experience, five-stars  and written feedback given by freelancers for each job posted means little because: a) they (clients) might have had a lot of refunds that are deleted from their profile statistic as well (just jobs posted and not awarded remain in their statistic) ; b) because a lot freelancers tend to give five-starts regardless and their criteria for awarding five-stars can differ from yours greatly.

But I mean, of course, it is your choice and I completely understand your point of view.If you feel it 's still better than taking the risk with new client, just go for it.

P.S. And yes, I agree with Dianne as well -a five-star feedback is not suspicious, to me at least, but I understand that people can have a different views on that.

 

Mattia, respectfully you need to read some of the posts about the letter that are going out.

 

Many freelancers  have 5 stars. and are getting these letters telling them they are close to be suspended and need to improve their quality.

 

We're told to pick clients wisely as a way to avoid being viewed negatively by Odesk. Please read some of these threads for a better understanding of what is happening lately.

My best clients ($$$) thru this platform were clients that would not hire freelancers unless they had an overall rating of 4.50 or better. They claimed that this was because they had bad experiences with some freelancers in the past. They also had criteria for how many hours the freelancer has worked in addition to other selection criteria.

 

Early on, when working thru this platform, I learned that even one rating of 4.83 could minimally lower a freelancer's overall rating (In some cases only from 5.00 to 4.98; again, minimally). Any ratings lower than that and the more of them, can definately "destroy" a freelancer's reputation and result in fewer hires from well-paying clients (It does not take much to fall below 4.50 or even lower). I believe it takes six months for the ratings to drop-off from the calculations of the overall rating.


I never demand good feedback and ratings. I never negotiate anything involving anything to do with feedback and ratings. However, when in doubt about a prospective client, I might point out the importance of feedback and ratings: "Positive feedback and 5.0 ratings in all rated categories on ***** are important to both clients and freelancers. I am interested in maintaining my positive feedback and 5.0 ratings here on *****. Likewise, I always afford clients the same consideration in return." I had been told by appropriate parties that statement was acceptable for me to use.


Edited 01/09/2015 RT/lwm

Ron aka LanWanMan
lanwanman
Member

JS -- Great thread! I totally agree with the need to screen prospective clients just as clients need to screen freelancers. That is why I have established criteria for use when I search for potentially good jobs and good clients -- jobs that are the best fit for me as a freelancer -- clients for which I believe I can provide the best services.

Still, like I have written about in the past, I have had to resort to bidding on jobs that I typically would not bid on (Including newbies). Why? Because I firmly believe that all of the search features made available for freelancers to use in their job searches are completely "useless"! I hope to use the new oDesk Community Forum "Idea Exchange" feature once it is released to initiate a discussion regarding those search features.

JS -- Was that someone named "Gaynor" [LOL] or Garnor M, the official oDesk Community Manager that wrote about freelancers being selective about their jobs and clients? Given the expression "We've found,"  I interpreted the information to have come from official sources.

 

Off [another] Topic: Theres; that "we" thing again...lol.... Nothing to do with how JS wrote it. "We" [I] get teased a lot in here about the "we" thing.

If I had direct access to the database (yeah right, like that is gonna happen) I would not have any problem finding the best jobs and clients. The API does not work well for job searches (does not allow access to all database entities). The search features do not work (I have an outline regarding that mess).

I do not have the same issues with job search features on similar sites. Why does this place have to be so difficult? It was great a few years back.

Edited 01/09/2015 RT/lwm

Ron aka LanWanMan
jsutherland
Member

It worries me that many "clients" are actually not the real client and have chosen or designated a person to handle hiring for them. This person often changes over time which makes it very hard to get a real picture of what it's like working with the client. 

 

I had one long term job where the designated person changed 3 times over the course of one year. I often wonder if the owner of the business even knows what's being said on Odesk. It's their reputation.

Hi Jean,

 

The same thing happened to me when someone gave me a good rating and then asked for a refund. It turned out the one asking for refund and still used my work is the client's son and not the person I dscussed the work with.

 

I did get their website taken down for a few days though. When I complained about this to support because in my understanding, only 1 person can handle 1 account, I was told that they have different rules for clients. 



❄❄❄ Just A Forum Contributor --- This isn't against forum guidelines ❄❄❄

Hello Dianne,

 

About your words: "IMO, saying things like that makes you sound bitter because you don't have the same (YET). You have a track record of 5 consecutive 5 stars so far, should I get suspicious of you when you reach about a dozen consecutive 5 star ratings?"...

 

I'm really sorry about that, I didn't mean to sound bitter in any way. I was just trying to convey the following thought: soon or later, you'll find THAT client. We all do. It's a pain in the °°°, but it happens from time to time, even when you rely on your best judgment. I received a pretty unfair rating once (3.Something stars), but I decided to deal with it; I worked hard for that project, and really deserved the money I had earned. That's why I chose not to refund a single dollar (to be completely fair, the client never asked me to do so), keeping the bad rating instead. That choice didn't affect my career here: I keep getting interviews and jobs, as usual. I really do believe that your personality and skills count much more than a single bad rating or feedback (obviously, if you have a record filled with negative feedbacks only, then your reputation is really compromised, and likely everyone will have doubts about your professional skills and behaviour). 

 

I know there are really great 5-full-stars freelancer here, and I surely respect them. But I know there are also some guys who like to "play" with refunds and maliciously "ask" for feedback changes and stuff like that... THAT looks suspicious to me.

 

Again, no offence intended to any honest top freelancer here! 

 

LAST MINUTE EDIT:

 

I was speaking in terms of "dozens", but I meant a perfect, all-time 5-star-rating. That is really really hard to achieve, for the above mentioned reasons...  

“Go then, there are other worlds than these.”
―Stephen King, The Gunslinger

"Mattia, respectfully you need to read some of the posts about the letter that are going out.

 

Many freelancers  have 5 stars. and are getting these letters telling them they are close to be suspended and need to improve their quality.

 

We're told to pick clients wisely as a way to avoid being viewed negatively by Odesk. Please read some of these threads for a better understanding of what is happening lately."

 

 

Hello Jean,

 

I just took a look at some of those posts. NOW I fully understand your concerns. It didn't happen to me (yet), so I'll let better informed freelancer speak about the issue. Sorry for the little "chaos" I brought to the conversation.

 

Have a nice evening, I really wish you all the best in both work and life!

 

 

“Go then, there are other worlds than these.”
―Stephen King, The Gunslinger

Hi Mattia,

 

Thanks and no biggie. I remember seeing something like that on another freelancer's profile and it really is a turn-off from a client's point of view. When interviewing freelancers, I noticed some of them voice out the same against fellow freelancers and caused me to hire someone else even if they seem very qualified. Just hoping you won't make the same mistake because as far as I can see, you got the makings of someone who can get dozens of 5 stars in a row 🙂

 

Btw, I got 5 dozens of them in a row before the money back guarantee thing was launched and so started the influx of bad clients 😞

 

With the above said, I want to be clear that I never ask clients to change feedback or to give me 5 stars. I don't even discuss ratings with them because I believe in being fair and being rated the right way.

 

The only client I complained about rating to support is someone who rated me lower in cooperation and left a bad feedback because I won't do something which was not in the original job. I mean, that's totally unfair! Just because I won't do more extra work for free doesn't mean I'm uncooperative. I did complain about another client too but that's not abourt rating, it's about him running a refund scam and getting lots of free work as a result.



❄❄❄ Just A Forum Contributor --- This isn't against forum guidelines ❄❄❄

"I believe in being fair and being rated the right way."

 

Totally agree with you. Being fair should always play a key role in freelancing (as well as in life itself: act fairly, and hopefully you'll get fairness in return).

 

"Just hoping you won't make the same mistake".

 

Thanks for the advice, that's a good one. I never talk about other freelancers to a potential client, 'cause I believe it to be unprofessional... there's no need to discredit other people in order to get a job: I never tell what others cannot do for clients, I just tell what I can do for them. 

 

By the way, I never meant to criticize your professionalism, which is pretty much evident and beyond doubt Smiley Happy

 

 

“Go then, there are other worlds than these.”
―Stephen King, The Gunslinger
kochubei_valeria
Community Manager
Community Manager

Thank you for the discussion and sharing your opinions, everybody.

 

Note that a few posts have been removed from this thread to keep the conversation professional and on topic.

 

Thank you for understanding.

~ Valeria
Upwork