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Job Success Score Should Be Illegal

People's livlihoods and careers rest on the rating of job score success.


The system is flawed, it does no one any favors, and there's zero way for freelancers to recieve real feedback on their work and client relationships.


It's not good when how people percieve you is based on a shotty formula that fluctuates every few weeks based on many factors that the freelancer cannot control.


Upwork gives clients way too much benefit of the doubt. Often they do bad business or have bad proposals or are unclear on what they want.


You hurt the Upwork economy as whole with private feedback and an arbitrary job score.


Everything should be open and public, this would force clients to really think about what they're asking for before they make a post, and freelancers to really understand if they can deliver or not on their project.


I feel like I'm held hostage by the JSS and I'm sure I'm not alone. The system makes no sense and I can't see how it benefits anyone.

Community Member

I don't know that I agree with the term "illegal," but I understand where you're coming from. I've always had a 90+% JSS and I'm Top Rated, which is great on the surface. The issue lies in the fact that clients aren't always honest about their experience. You could ask them a million and one times if there is anything more that needs to be done to improve the project or experience and they'll write back "No, everything was great!" but behind the scenes they reflect an unwarranted score. 


We cannot work with what we don't have. Period. 


I'm pretty sure I'll be permanently deleting my profile in the next few weeks. With decreased QC and terrible freelancer support (which wasn't always the case!), Upwork has become a low-quality marketplace. I'm beginning to think that freelancers are better off on other platforms or on their own entirely. 


Community Member

I agree with everything you say. JSS is such a poor metric, especially at the higher end of the freelancer market where proven, top-rated, highly skilled freelancers consistently deliver good work, but all it takes is a couple of hapless or temperamental clients leaving less than stellar private feedback to ruin their score. It´s plausible, possible, and over the long term highly probable.


I have found unjustified/unfair feedback to be a huge issue especially with new clients, who either come to Upwork to get help with one-off projects and don´t return (and therefore don´t care about building a client history and "reputation", hence also couldn't care less about how JSS affects others) or who simply don´t realize the importance of this metric to the other side of the client-freelancer relationship. I seriously doubt Upwork is investing any resources in educating new clients on the importance of treating feedback ethically/responsibly because while poor or mediocre JSS is obviously undesirable for freelancers, it seemingly doesn´t impact UW's bottom line - except that it does, as eventually more and more highly skilled freelancers learn through trial and error to avoid new clients so as not to risk ending up in such self-harm situations. For me at least, the thinking goes something like this: why risk ruining my TR+ rating that I have been building and maintaining over several years for the "upside" of earning $400, $1000 or even $1500 and a possible damage to my score because of some rando that just joined UW? And don´t tell me to "just fully vet clients" because even the most well-behaved and reasonable sounding clients, if new to UW and uneducated about JSS, may easily think that leaving a 6 or a 7 as private feedback is good enough (which it absolutely isn´t from a JSS algorithm perspective).


Admittedly I can afford to make such long-shot calculations because I have established clients and also don´t rely exclusively on UW for income, but that's exactly my point - many highly skilled freelancers are probably in a similar situation. I don´t know who loses out more at the end - those freelancers for turning down possible projects if they are even slightly on the fence about the client *because of* possible JSS ramifications, the would-have-been clients, or Upwork with its ill-conceived, client-is-king-so-let's-reflect-that-in-some-opaque-arbitrary-score performance measurement system...

Good clients aren't going to want to hire here if there aren't good freelancers to hire. And the good freelancers aren't going to want to be here unless they are happy withj the experience.


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