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Job success score lowered by unresponsive clients?

Active Member
Harrison H Member Since: Jan 3, 2018
1 of 4

Up until now, I have had a 100% JSS and Top Rated. Based on what I can tell, all feedback has been 5 stars. I just saw today that my score was 97%. After speaking with support, it was indicated that this had to do with my three contracts without feedback (out of many more successful).


Two of these were around six months ago. In both of these cases, the clients were unresponsive, I could not complete the work and ended the contract as such. This is reflected in Upwork messages. Then a few weeks ago, I started a contract with another client. I put about an hour in and he then went dark. I received notification that the contract was paused due to an issue on the client's end. I then received further communication that his payment was declined but that Upwork stepped in and covered me. I went about two weeks without hearing from the client and, after numerous attempts, I cancelled the contract as client unresponsive.


Up until this, my feedback was 100%. The only thing that has changed (at least that I can see), is this client. Based on my conversations with support, it appears that I am impacted by unresponsive clients. I understand a pattern of these is a problem. But given that my score hasn't changed in months, I can only come to the conclusioon that the recent customer whom didn't pay and Upwork had an issue with, was the culprit.


Does anyone have any experience with this? I cannot fathom why a client that stops paying would negatively impact me for no feedback. I'm told there is no dispute path for this.


Looking for some feedback and collaboration.



Community Leader
Mike W Member Since: Sep 28, 2016
2 of 4

Hey there!


I totally feel your pain.  I kept a 100% for quite awhile before I dropped to a staggering 94% JSS, fully due to unresponsive clients and clients who just simply do not leave any feedback at all.  It's very frustrating, especially if you are handling a high volume of clients.  One thing to also keep in mind is that even though a client appears to be satisfied with your performance on theh front end of things, they could just as easily selected the option that says "I would not recommend this freelancer" on their backend and in turn would also affect your JSS. 


Here's a couple tips:


  • Don't start jobs unless they are hourly contracts or there is a milestone funded.  This will ensure you don't waste any time.
  • When a job is completed, kindly advise the client to leave some feedback and that you will do the same.  Remember, they can't end the contract without first being given the option to provide feedback about their experience.e

I hope this helps you!


Community Guru
Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
3 of 4

Clearly, the only solution is to stop working with clients. No clients, no opportunity for the outcome to not be exceptional. Problem solved. 

Community Guru
Melanie H Member Since: Nov 2, 2017
4 of 4

97% doesnt s-ck! (JMO.)


You know, we just can't control every last thing here (or anywhere). We can't. So don't sweat this. Honestly, I don't think your work is going to come to a screeching halt due to a 97% score, which is still pretty darned good and above that magic "90% threshold."


I have two clients I am struggling at the moment to politely have them end contracts that they've just sort of trailed off on. And it's a total of three contracts. One of these was someone who had gone great guns, delivered a good rate, was communicative and had given me solid work. So it wasn't like I could have "chosen better." He just ran out of money. Literally. A big check he'd anticipated didn't come through. He let me know that (and I guess his other contractors) and since then, crickets.


Neither of these two clients seems very compelled to close the contracts, but you know, I get it. What's to motivate them? They aren't trying to harm me or my JSS. They're business people and they're thinking of their own businesses and they both have issues right now with that, and there you have it. ALL I can do (and have done) is approach to ask politely to close, to re-approach at some point in maybe another month or so, and after that, if there's still no response, close one contract at a time myself. It may hurt my JSS. I don't know. But that's kind of the nature of working with people. Things just won't always go exactly as planned.


Keep working. Your JSS will go up if you get more completed contracts with great reviews.