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Interesting fact on how clients apparently find freelancers?

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Community Guru
Sandra T Member Since: Nov 26, 2014
1 of 12

Hello,

 

sorry if this is old news for some of you, but I learned something that I found rather interesting...

 

I received a job interview from a client looking for a freelancer to write an ebook on chess. Obviously there are thousands of writers on Upwork, and my profile doesn't really aim to find writing jobs. So I wondered a bit how this client "found" me, and found it a bit peculiar since I am currently working on a large translation of... a chess website!

 

I am not interested in this ebook writing job, but found it odd that apparently the title of a job I am currently working on seemed to have triggered the search engine to display my profile to this client. I am guessing it even recommended it, because I took a look at who else this client invited. Only 8 invites so far. I had a look at the profiles of the other invited freelancers. Only one of them actually has the word "chess" in his profile. 2 have done jobs on Upwork which have "chess" in their title description, 2 have "chess" in the titel in one of their portfolio items. Only 2 1/2 out of these 8 (I am counting myself as the half) are actually providers for writing work.

 

So, apparently titles of previous or present jobs and titles of portfolio items seem to influence the search? If so, I absolutely wasn't aware of this. I guess it can make sense, if as in this case clients are looking for something rather specific, but it can also be hugely misleading.

 

If I am on the right path here, I am also wondering if and how this "knowledge" can be used by/useful for freelancers. I am not quite getting my head around this yet, but with the right type of words in either the job titles of jobs you have done or in titles of portfolio items the search might cough you up or even recommend you in front of possibly thousands of other freelancers?

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Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
2 of 12

Yeah, that's something I noticed too when trying to understand the ominous search algorithm.

But then again, it's sth else a freelancer can't influence, isn't it? 

 

I just received an invite from a client looking for a native English speaker (to write legal content, the latter being a match). It says so in his job description twice in CAPITAL LETTERS (mentioned in the header and the detailed description). It seems important to him.

 

I am not a native speaker. So, am I what he is looking for even though his job posting says otherwise?

Why was I recommended in the first place?

 

 

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Community Guru
Jean S Member Since: Oct 22, 2007
3 of 12

Ok, I understand what you two are saying, but how does that explain me getting 2 separate invitations to work in the Adult Entertainment Industry. Absolutely nothing in my profile or my jobs say "ADULT".

 

For Upwork, I found this very discouraging and I wish you would FIX things so this stops happening to me and others.

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Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
4 of 12

Hi Sandra,

 

It is true, your job experience on Upwork is one of the things that are considered by our searching and recommendation algorithms. The client is still free to review the candidates' profiles and work histories before inviting them to apply.

 

~ Valeria
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Community Guru
Setu M Member Since: Jan 26, 2014
5 of 12
I realize that getting invitations and job recommendations that are abstract to what you are about, is inconvenient and bothersome at times. But look on the bright side, someone (the algorithm) is actively trying to find jobs for me and presenting me with opportunities. I find this quite useful.

In my case, usually 2 out of 10 these invitations or recommendations are correct and I will most times land both jobs. So I am getting actual jobs given to me without searching. I will put up with the other bothersome 8 job invitations I have to ignore.
---- easy like Sunday morning ----
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Community Guru
Jean S Member Since: Oct 22, 2007
6 of 12

@Setu M wrote:

In my case, usually 2 out of 10 these invitations or recommendations are correct and I will most times land both jobs. So I am getting actual jobs given to me without searching. I will put up with the other bothersome 8 job invitations I have to ignore.

 If the same holds true for a client, then do you think they are happy that only 20% of the people they are shown are a good fit for their job? 

 

I was recently on the client side of this and it was not a pleasant experience. With over 60 applicants it gets very frustrating to be shown people who did not have the proper skills. Imagine having to read 60 profiles to try and find someone.

 

In the end I gave up and hired no one, as it was just too overwhelming. That's not an experience I want to have every time I post a job.

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Community Guru
Sandra T Member Since: Nov 26, 2014
7 of 12

Hello Valeria,

 

thank you for the reply and the confirmation. Generally I welcome this sort of search aspect, as it generally makes sense - at least some.

 

I am still left wondering however - so if in the case I described the job title of the previous job had not have "chess" in it, the client would not have found me (or the other freelancers who ended up being invited)?

 

If so, and I understand that this is only one (maybe even small) aspect of the way searches and recommendations work, it would make sense to not have too generic titles for jobs or portfolio items?

 

Thanks & best regards

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Community Guru
Santiago G Member Since: Mar 10, 2015
8 of 12

In my case, I got invites because of the categories I have selected.

 

2 of them were in fact just to "take a look see".

 

I most assuredly don't have anything for Customer Service or Data Entry in my profile. My job history only shows writing jobs and one video tutorial making job.

 

Tech Support still is in the my Categories list and Data Entry used to be there.

 

The data entry invite was seriously looking like a scam and the invite to the Customer Service Program still has me stumped. Especially if these are based on my profile.

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Community Guru
Setu M Member Since: Jan 26, 2014
9 of 12
@ Jean,

You make a valid point. So what may be a small nuisance to me becomes a huge problem for someone else. This is why different ideas are important in a discussion. I still appreciate the service but I accept that alot needs to be improved in the algorithm.
---- easy like Sunday morning ----
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Community Guru
Stephen B Member Since: Dec 4, 2012
10 of 12

This is another example of a seemongly good idea on the surface that's riddled with pitfalls beneath - the basis of all their algorithms I fear.

 

As an editor, the subject matter of what I edit is irrelevant. What kind of document it is, what the readership is, what the voice of the author is, and what overall format/template/structure is required, are all relevant. After that, editing an ebook on tennis is the same as editing an ebook on giraffes. So I don't want (as has happened) to be sent invitation to rewrite and spin articles for a tennis blog because I once proofed and edited a tennis ebook (a real example). I want invitations for proofing and editing ebooks because I did that for a tennis ebook.

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