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doriancrown
Member

Connects used and unresponive client

Hello, I'm new in Upwork and just completed a job successfully for a client here in Upwork.  I check my Upwork account everyday to see if any of my proposals have been answered, even if they are declined.  Most of the proposals go unanswered, leaving me with 90% of my connects used on unresponsive clients that sell fake jobs.  

 

I've had a few proposals declined and thats acceptable but to be sitting on 90% unresponsive clients that don't even attend the proposals they receive, is irresponsable to say the least. 

 

Just as others here in Upwork would like to see their ROI, I suggest that a timeframe be set on projects published on Upwork, maybe 15 to 30 days so that any unresponsive clients that don't respond to proposals, the freelancers get back their 2 connects.  That way we can reinvest these connects on other projects.  I know that if we needed more connects we could just buy more but a dollar a connect is pretty expensive given that you provide 60 connects a month for free.  If the suggested return of unresponsive connects where returned to freelancers after a certain period of unresponsiveness by the clients and purchasing connects be more accessible for all new to upwork and existing existing freelancers, say 25 connects for $10.00, there would be more purchases of connects and given that its a odd number, we'd be force to buy more in order to use the pending (1) connect. 

 

To conclude my suggestions: 

 

1.  Return connects to freelancer on unresponsive proposals after 15 days, no questions asked. Since they are not rollover connects (the free connects) they'd need to be used before the end of the cycle or they'd be lost anyways.  This is very possitive for Upwork because it will keep the freelancers more active in the site knowing they might get connects back for reuse. 

 

2.  Make connects more accessible, say 25 connects for $10.00, so there would be more purchases of connects and given that its a odd number, we'd be force to buy more connects in order to use the pending (1) connect. 

 

Note:  I've checked other freelance sites and found Upwork to be the most reliable site, easy to work with and understand its procedures.  I've tweaked to pros and cons from all the site freelance sites and if these two suggestions are implemented, most if not all freelancers and professionals will find themselves working with Upwork.  

 

Thanx in advance. 

26 REPLIES 26
mtngigi
Member

It's been discussed. It's not going to happen. No one here who is at any truly professional level does not need any more connects, nor do clients need to be bombarded any more than they already are, if Upwork provides more connects.

 

Bid wisely, and you won't run out.

Thank you for your response miss Virginia.  I'll do so.  

prestonhunter
Member

Dennis:

Successful freelancers do not need to pay for connects.

Your comment looks more like sarcasm than advise.  If you don't have any good positive advise to offer, don't say anything man.  I'm posting genuine concerns I see might have potential in this site, not looking for small minded commentors.  Take your grandioso attitude somewhere else. 

I was actually coming here to post the exact same thing. I've read before that this was a change that was made before to limit people bidding on a lot of jobs and to increase quality. 

 

Since I used this platform to hire people before and other freelance websites - I believe the simple solution to this and other problems would be to simply have a chat. I still hire people to this day and find it easier to chat with them and find out more information about them - here it seems you can only chat with people after the client has sent you a message.

 

I'm pretty sure this system could be implemented fairly easily. In the instance that someone posted a job and never picked one freelancer but 20 of them bid that's just waste of connects. Also, dials down to the question why didn't this person pick anyone - it all starts at customer service. 

Connects are not wasted - they're simply the cost of doing business. You don't know if clients pick anyone, because many clients post the same job on multiple platforms.


@Hill T wrote:

I was actually coming here to post the exact same thing. I've read before that this was a change that was made before to limit people bidding on a lot of jobs and to increase quality. 

 

Since I used this platform to hire people before and other freelance websites - I believe the simple solution to this and other problems would be to simply have a chat. I still hire people to this day and find it easier to chat with them and find out more information about them - here it seems you can only chat with people after the client has sent you a message.

 

I'm pretty sure this system could be implemented fairly easily. In the instance that someone posted a job and never picked one freelancer but 20 of them bid that's just waste of connects. Also, dials down to the question why didn't this person pick anyone - it all starts at customer service. 


 

 

Connects are not wasted - they're simply the cost of doing business. You don't know if clients pick anyone, because many clients post the same job on multiple platforms.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Don't you think if it weren't an actual problem that people wouldn't be bringing it back up constantly? Just because this system works this way doesn't mean it's the best possible scenario. 

 

" clients post the same job on multiple platforms."

 

Correct - We are clients ourselves we hire people from other platforms - most of these platforms allow you to have a conversation with the possible freelancer before submitting a bid. 

 

- Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion and I frankly believe it's a waste - coding in a chat or a custom proposal button would allow for the freelancer to be able to communicate with the client and if there is no interest on the clients end then the freelancer doesn't have to send a proposal and you can save your connect.

 

 

 

 


@Hill T wrote:

 

Connects are not wasted - they're simply the cost of doing business. You don't know if clients pick anyone, because many clients post the same job on multiple platforms.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

[1] Don't you think if it weren't an actual problem that people wouldn't be bringing it back up constantly? Just because this system works this way doesn't mean it's the best possible scenario. 

 

" clients post the same job on multiple platforms."

 

[2] Correct - We are clients ourselves we hire people from other platforms - most of these platforms allow you to have a conversation with the possible freelancer before submitting a bid. 

 

[3] - Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion and I frankly believe it's a waste - coding in a chat or a [4] custom proposal button would allow for the freelancer to be able to communicate with the client and if there is no interest on the clients end then the freelancer doesn't have to send a proposal and you can save your connect.

 


1. The people who bring it up are (in my experience) almost always new people who haven't found their rhythm yet. There's a reason the veterans here shut it down every time. Refunding connects is not a good idea as it cheapens the pool. If people knew they could get their connects refunded if they apply to a job that they're not the best match for, or - in many cases - jobs that have already been filled or are no longer inactive - there's no incentive to be wise about their bids.

 

2. I've been on some of the platforms that allow you to chat without sending a bid. In my experience, they generally result in either clients who want to take work off platform (against the TOS here, and probably against the TOS on other platforms too), or in freelancers who take up the client's time when they are clearly not qualified. I haven't been a client on the other platforms, but this is what I've been told. In the end, because of the numerous 
"TOS workarounds" present in those sites, I've chosen to bid mainly on Upwork - it may have the most junk clients, but it's got the most decent clients, too.

 

3. I get what you're saying about mitigating risks on the freelancer's end. Unfortunately, that's not the way freelancing works. Freelancing is a risk, and those who aren't able to handle the risks involved are more than welcome to go elsewhere. Allowing freelancers to talk to clients without being invited and without "wasting" their connects only enables "freelancers" (note the quotes) to waste the client's time. Legitimate, professional freelancers generally don't need to go through all their connects, even if they're sending some out into the void as an informational tool. When you really think about it, you're given one free proposal for every single day of the month. If you need to apply to more than 30 jobs within a single month, there's something wrong with your proposal, your profile, or your overall communication strategy. NOT with the limit of connects.

 

4. I don't understand what you mean by "custom proposal." All proposals should be custom-tailored to the job posting. If that means that the job posting doesn't specify details and you want to get those details, then write that in your proposal. Legit clients will appreciate that you thought to ask; non-legit clients will look past you and you'll actually be better off in the long run.

 

While I disagree with Upwork on a great many policies, connects aren't one of them. If anything, I wish Upwork didn't allow buying extra connects. As mentioned above, the idea of getting more connects after you've run out makes it easier for people to spam jobs they're not qualified for without repurcussion (aside from the few dollars they've spent).

 

- Barbara Herrera -

I'm actually the one who wrote this, not Hill:

 

"Connects are not wasted - they're simply the cost of doing business. You don't know if clients pick anyone, because many clients post the same job on multiple platforms."

 

Oh ... nevermind, I see you just grabbed his whole quote.

Hill:

I'm not sure what you mean exactly...

 

Clients on Upwork CAN ALREADY institute chats with freelancers AT NO COST. A client can invite any freelancer to apply to one of his job posts, without committing to anything whatsoever.

 

An invitation is simply the beginning of a conversation.

 

With the Upwork messenger tool, you can chat using messages, live chat, audio or video.

 

You can can provide a freelancer with a phone number or Skype handle and chat on the phone or via Skype or however you want.

 

What exactly is it that you want to do that can't already be done?

Hill, I totally understand what your saying and thanx for understanding my post.  For the others reading, I'm clearly talking about the unresponsive clients.  You can't just chat with unresponsive clients, they don't answer.  So ready proposals and submitting connects to then find out they never respond makes the site look bad and freelancers shouldn't be penalized with THE COST OF DOING BUSINESS for those that are unresponsive. 

I think it would be great for Upwork to phone clients that never make it to the interview or hired state and say 

 

'Hello, we see you inquired about hiring for XYZ and it looks like you received some pretty awesome responses we're just calling to see if you have any questions about how to proceed and letting you know someone is here to help if you have any problems down the line.'

 

This could be done if they never make it to the interviewing phase and also after the interviewing phase if they never make it to the hiring phase.  If the client responds with I hired someone off the upwork site then upwork could say OK I'll update your job request for you and move it to closed or whatever.

 

I think putting a human voice to the website would really kick it up a notch for Upwork.

It may also get more work making it to the hired state.

 

I don't know maybe they already do that, if not they should.

 

Ken

 

 


@Ken S wrote:

I think it would be great for Upwork to phone clients that never make it to the interview or hired state and say 

 

'Hello, we see you inquired about hiring for XYZ and it looks like you received some pretty awesome responses we're just calling to see if you have any questions about how to proceed and letting you know someone is here to help if you have any problems down the line.'

 

This could be done if they never make it to the interviewing phase and also after the interviewing phase if they never make it to the hiring phase.  If the client responds with I hired someone off the upwork site then upwork could say OK I'll update your job request for you and move it to closed or whatever.

 

I think putting a human voice to the website would really kick it up a notch for Upwork.

It may also get more work making it to the hired state.

 

I don't know maybe they already do that, if not they should.

 

Ken


Are you aware of the thousands, no millions, of job posts and clients who use the site?

 

Any idea of how much man/woman power it would take to make those phone calls. Any idea of how that cost would be covered? Are you willing to pay a 30% fee or higher in order for Upwork to do this?

 

There are plenty of human voices ... right here in the forums. Suggestions are fine, they just need to be thought all the way through before making them.

I suggest doing a trial run with one full-time employee focusing on the USA to USA market.  Those clients based in the USA and seeking USA based contractors only.  A no answer - leave a message call should take about one minute and calls that are actually answerered probably less than two minutes.  So probably one person can average about 300 calls per day.

 

Wow you're not going to believe this but I just counted this sub group of jobs posted during the last 24 hours and it's exactly 300.  This is US to US only.  I think it's a great group to start with.  And remember you only have to call the ones that have been idle for let's say a week or more.  So the actual number of calls needing to be placed per day is less than 300 so this is very doable experiment.

 

 

sam-sly
Member

Dennis, part of working on this platform is learning when to use your connects. I've never run out even as a newbie. Why? I always looked at:

- The posting date

- Whether someone was interviewed or hired

- The budget (my rates were lower starting out, but I had a minimum that I was willing to work for). You can bid over the client's budget and sometimes I do, but I read between the lines to see whether I think that client might be flexible on their budget. This is riskier if you tend to run low on connects, but I never really have. 

- The client's history (I love new clients now, but when I was new I looked for clients with a history of leaving feedback and paying decently).

- Whether the job interests me and is a good match for my skills

- How many others already applied

 

Using that criteria, I've never seen more than 30 job posts in a month that I wanted to apply for. Since I write custom proposals for each, I sometimes see jobs I would apply for but for some reason, I just don't feel motivated to write a proposal. So I pass on it. 

 

I do see a lot of unanswered proposals. I kind of see it as a failure to sell on my part. I don't give it that much thought, but I do realize that some clients post their project on multiple platforms than hire whoever they feel best meets their needs. Some of my best clients were new to Upwork, so I know the right pitch can result in getting hired by those clients. If they don't respond or hire here, maybe they found someone, somewhere else who was better at selling themselves. In many cases, we are not just competing with other freelancers on this global platform, we are competing with others on other platforms too.

Samantha S:  I agree and understand what your saying. More to what my idea is presenting.  My suggestions allow for proposals to have a time limit so you don't have unanswered proposals just sitting on your board.  And to what your saying  about them posting in multiple boards, it should be on the client to have a time limit and freelancers be reimbursed the connects for not being responded. 

kenstone
Member

I was just thinking the same thing and just came to the forum here to create a discussion and this one was the fourth one down on the list already.

 

"Most of the proposals go unanswered, leaving me with 90% of my connects used on unresponsive clients that sell fake jobs.  "

 

 

I was thinking we definitely need some way to follow up on these proposals that we send.  

 

Maybe Upwork could follow up?  I know of other sites in other industries that operate similiarly.  For example there is a site that caters to mobile DJs.  Customers come and request quotes for their event.  The site provider follows up and the DJs also have access to the clients email and phone number to use to followup.  They don't limit how many quotes you can send like this site.  In other words there are no tokens that you run out of and have to buy more if you want to keep bidding on new gigs that come in.  

 

This process definitely needs improvement.

 

 

 

 

vdubeau
Member

To make comparisons with the B&M world.

 

Let's say as a consultant (freelancer) you go to a prospective client to talk over their project. You leave and wait to hear from them. They never call you to tell you anything. Would you demand that they pay for your mileage becuase they "wasted your time"?

"Remember, no matter where you go, there you are."
Buckaroo Banzai

What is the breakdown percentage wise of job postings that sucessfully hire, go idle after interviewing, and just go idle after posting?

 

 

You may assess a potential client's likelihood of responding by viewing the client stats associated with the job posting. 

 

Craigslist, your local newspaper, and email servers do not compensate you for time spent soliciting jobs. Neither do these venues force prospective employers to make hires. Accept that Upwork is not a job placement service and handle your proposals accordingly.  

Most professionals that submit proposals for work to other professionals almost always have their phone numbers, emails, etc., to followup with them in a timely manner.  On those cases where you CAN followup with potential clients and not get the job, that can be held as the REAL cost of doing business.  And to what Tonya P says about newspapers and Craigslist, freelancers are selling anything, they are responding to offers made by clients for specialized services. 

 

The only issue I'm addressing is the unresponsive proposals with zero effort on behalf of the client that posted the request.  Some of my connects have been declined and I accept it when they take the time to decline the proposals they receive.  Now on the other hand, the ones that don't even take the time to answer, the system should be able to return the connects for the UNRESPONSIVE.  

 

Like I said before, even is I thoroughly assess each job, percentages for unresponsive submits are high and most of you if not all of you know unresponsiveness is fairly frequent.  If more than a 80% of total submits are unresponsive, of course all freelancers would create profiles in different boards.  There's not one person on this board that has a 100% turnaround on submits. 

 

What I'm suggesting is a simple return of connects for UNRESPONSIVE clients.  We ALL win, freelancers and Upwork. 

Well .... simply put, many (most) of us don't feel like we're losing just because we don't get connects back. If I could give away all the connects I usually have left over every month, I'd be happy to.

My whole argument on here is that a chat could be beneficial to help with the managing of connects. I think it also boils down to what skills your marketing as -

 

Virgina - Upwork already reaches out to people but they call it Upwork premium where they have someone coordinate with the client and answer questions and help them pick the best freelancer. All I was saying was we could do that ourselves if someone posts a bunch of jobs but never hires someone that's a waste. 

 

The freelancer premium program. referenced here -> https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/235060368-Join-Premium-Programs-for-Freelancers?flash_d...

 

 

 

I keep getting emails with updates but I don't see them on the page only in email. 

Hi HIll, 


Could you please elaborate on the issue you are experiencing. What emails are you getting, and where is it not showign on your Upwork account?


~ Avery
Upwork
kamicaldwell
Member

As a somewhat newbie, here (I started in late June), I can see the frustration. For my first month, I would bid and bid only to run low on connects. Now that I’ve taken on a variety of projects, I can craft my proposal to fit the client and only bid on jobs I actually want to do, at the rate I want. Refunding connects just increases competition as far as I can see.

 

Side note, I tried a different platform as a client for a personal project my mom needed and the experience was awful. I kept receiving message after message and email notifications from freelancers claiming to be experienced, but they couldn’t back it up. Even after I would ask. I appreciate the way Upwork handles bids and client interactions. It makes clients want to stay here and allows them to decide who’s the best fit without being overwhelmed.

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