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Clients that don't actualy want anyone to do any work?

leeannmerrill
Community Leader
Lee Ann M Member Since: Feb 23, 2016
1 of 11

I have been busier with personal issues over the past few months so have not been submitting many proposals.  I used to get a lot of invites and have gotten almost none in the last six months.  I feel I have also noticed though that increasingly clients I've applied with just don't hire anybody, or if they do hire someone they have less work than they purport to have.  To wit:

 

- of 15 jobs I've applied for since May 4, no one has been hired for 10 of them

- of one job that already had one hire (I applied as it was pretty perfect for me and listing was still open), in a month-and-a-half or so only four hours has been logged (that hasn't changed for several weeks).

- two jobs appear to be "for reals ' someone was hired and is working a reasonable number of hours 

- one job had four hires but none of them appear to be working 

- I was hired for a job on June 28 to write two blogs per month - so theoretically I would have written six blogs by now.  I've written three due to various issues with employer being busy, etc.  Better than nothing.

 

This is becoming very discouraging. I'm top-rated and have over-the-top positive comments.  It's one thing to have a client hire someone else, then maybe at least you can learn something from the process/the profile of the person that was hired, but it feels very pointless and like a complete waste of time to apply for "jobs" where people are...I don't know....just testing out the notion of hiring a freelancer?  Have decided they don't want to spend money where the rubber hits the road.  I started Upwork under the premise that "here are people that need work done connecting with people who want to do work."  Now I'm feeling more and more like the former is not so much.  Is anyone else having this experience?  I suppose the next step would be to filter out potetial clients new to Upwork or those that haven't spent a certain amount of money?  I have at least a few of those in my "no one hired" category.

crart
Ace Contributor
Olga P Member Since: Aug 26, 2017
2 of 11

"just testing out the notion of hiring a freelancer" - exactly. Plus they try to test the market re. price and then get someone to do this cheaper. Discouraging indeed. Of course I had such situations. I apply for many projects, work hard on each and every project I get hired for, managed to get 100% job success which is awesome. But honestly, freelancer's life is hard enough without being bothered with dishonest clients so I wish Upwork implemented something like, I don't know... maybe if the client is not active with his own posted job for 3 days, the job is closed and all connects are given back to freelancers who applied? It's really a waste of time and connects to apply for projects that no one cares for. It seems clients can come here, make some tests and then go away, leaving freelancers without any sign of whether they still want to hire anyone for the project or not. Not fair while from freelancers they demand everything perfect. Don't know... maybe whole system of Upwork should be reworked but I doubt it will happen. All we can do is just nudge those clients that don't really treat this place seriously, which I actually do, asking after several days from applying whether the project goes live or not and if they decided to hire anyone. It's sad, though, that with all those things I must take care of like work, time management, marketing my services, taxes and oh yes, private life every once in a while, I also need to act like an admin.

tlbp
Community Guru
Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
3 of 11

Have you compared the time you have invested applying to warm leads here on Upwork versus doing your own lead generation from a cold start?  A job posting is an inquiry by a potential lead, there is no guarantee the person will hire anyone. Checking into those opportunities is a function of operating a business. If seeking qualified leads via Upwork *is* a waste of time when compared to other methods, then of course, it doesn't make sense to continue using Upwork. You should use whatever method is most effective and provides the greatest ROI for you. 

 

When I begin working with a new client, I tell them that I will reserve their time on my schedule once I have a contract (with funds in escrow and/or verified payment method). If the client doesn't fulfill those obligations, I continue seeking other contracts. A major part of freelancing is managing contracts and clients to maximize your profitability. But, you are a service provider so the client isn't aware of nor feels any obligation to make it easy for you.   

crart
Ace Contributor
Olga P Member Since: Aug 26, 2017
4 of 11

"If seeking qualified leads via Upwork *is* a waste of time when compared to other methods, then of course, it doesn't make sense to continue using Upwork." - I don't agree. We are not machines and we are not the same. What for one is waste of time for another isn't. Waste of time may be wrong words but what I meant is spending hours on searching for projects, tailoring proposals, managing my work schedule only to find out that clients don't care. This is a waste of time. And yes, you can call me inexperienced in searching for jobs, I still don't agree. Of course there are serious clients and I learned how to recognize them but I am only human and I do make mistakes in my judgment. I don't say all clients are wrong ones that don't treat Upwork seriously but amount of those only testing is not so small to ignore it. I am not into punishing anyone. If people used common sense more often the world would be a better place, for now we mostly have rat race which I accept, sadly cannot do anything about it.

 

"When I begin working with a new client, I tell them that I will reserve their time on my schedule once I have a contract (with funds in escrow and/or verified payment method). If the client doesn't fulfill those obligations, I continue seeking other contracts. A major part of freelancing is managing contracts and clients to maximize your profitability. But, you are a service provider so the client isn't aware of nor feels any obligation to make it easy for you." - of course. Still, if they require professional and serious attitude, they are required to offer the same, it's nothing more than logic. I am on neither side, I understand clients wish to pay less for better jobs and they wish to test the market to then find someone to work nearly for free. I understand life has different turns, sure thing. But there must be some kind of border set, like time for the job to be open without hiring. I've seen open jobs posted a year ago with no hires, how's that fair towards freelancers?

It's the same with video games - as a gamer I wish games were cheaper but as a game developer I understand how much it costs to make a game. Both sides cannot win, we need compromise.

sergio-soria
Community Guru
Sergio S Member Since: Dec 19, 2017
5 of 11

It's not only about testing the market. In many of those jobs the clients don't even come back to check, sometimes in posts that read "urgent" in all capitals. And I have read older posts about this same topic, meaning it has been happening for years already. I am sure they post the same job offer in several websites like this and end up hiring somewhere else and not through Upwork.

 

This is why I tailor proposals but don't spend too much time on them. I go strictly to the point, because I already spend a lot of time watching client's history, feedback, etc. And I don't hold out hopes of anything. I pretty much delete those job offers in my mind after I click on "Submit." If they interview me afterwards that's great but even in that case I don't hold out hopes either until I see a contract with money in escrow. I have even been in a project where everything was set and the project manager had put together a team, we were about to have a kick-off meeting but then nothing happened at all... So I learnt from that. Only when I see things get serious then I put all my soul on them, and I really do.

 

The actual problem I find is that when you are not hired Upwork blame you. That is something hard to understand.

hodgesh
Community Guru
Kholleras I Member Since: Nov 24, 2015
6 of 11

@Olga P wrote:

"If seeking qualified leads via Upwork *is* a waste of time when compared to other methods, then of course, it doesn't make sense to continue using Upwork." - I don't agree. We are not machines and we are not the same. What for one is waste of time for another isn't.


 That's what she said: "You should use whatever method is most effective and provides the greatest ROI for you." Meaning that every individual who finds Upwork a waste of time compared to other ways to find clients should use those other ways more than or instead of Upwork. The point is that, however inefficient using Upwork may be, it might be more time-effective for you than finding clients some other way—and if not, consider not using it.

crart
Ace Contributor
Olga P Member Since: Aug 26, 2017
7 of 11

@Heaven H wrote:

@Olga P wrote:

"If seeking qualified leads via Upwork *is* a waste of time when compared to other methods, then of course, it doesn't make sense to continue using Upwork." - I don't agree. We are not machines and we are not the same. What for one is waste of time for another isn't.


 That's what she said: "You should use whatever method is most effective and provides the greatest ROI for you." Meaning that every individual who finds Upwork a waste of time compared to other ways to find clients should use those other ways more than or instead of Upwork. The point is that, however inefficient using Upwork may be, it might be more time-effective for you than finding clients some other way—and if not, consider not using it.


 You didn't get my point obviously. It is a waste of time when spending this time on people who don't care. I highly esteem my clients on any service I work through, Upwork on top of them. I only pointed out that while clients require top services and quality, in a timely manner, they sometimes don't offer the same fair attitude. And I feel I must repeat - not all clients. What methods I use is my business of course. I use whatever is good for me. If trying to make things more efficient is a bad thing then I honestly lose faith in humanity.

leeannmerrill
Community Leader
Lee Ann M Member Since: Feb 23, 2016
8 of 11

Yes, I understand it isn't anyone's job to make things easy for me. Just wondering, does it cost clients money to list a potential job?  If I don't do enough work Upwork tells me they're talking my profile private unless I go with a paid membership.  If I take time and care with proposals and then the clients don't hire anyone, then it makes it difficult to do actual work.  I understand that it costs Upwork money to host my profile, but if clients list jobs just to go fishing does that not also cost Upwork money, i.e. providing clients with a list of "warm leads" of people who are willing to work?

sergio-soria
Community Guru
Sergio S Member Since: Dec 19, 2017
9 of 11

@Lee Ann M wrote:

Yes, I understand it isn't anyone's job to make things easy for me. Just wondering, does it cost clients money to list a potential job?


As far as I know posting a job is free of charge. They have the option to pay to have the job post with the blue ribbon "featured job." The job will stand out from others in searches and will be showcased in some other ways too.

leeannmerrill
Community Leader
Lee Ann M Member Since: Feb 23, 2016
10 of 11

Then I think I will need to adjust my perception of Upwork as a place where people who need work done go to meet people who want to work.  I think that's the perception that Upwork wants to promulgate but it doesn't seem that way.  It used to.

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