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Re: Nothing has changed since the upwork payed connects!

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Active Member
Hacene B Member Since: Jul 25, 2017
11 of 42
You have summarized the whole situation.
Community Leader
william b Member Since: Jan 3, 2015
12 of 42

SD,

 

Thank you.

As a very experienced UWer however, I would strongly urge all FLs to keep your Upwork expectations very, very low.

 

Work smart, work safe!

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Community Guru
Robin H Member Since: May 28, 2019
13 of 42

Shaun D wrote:

i haven't noticed a change either, and quite frankly, finding work on UpWork is becoming more and more of a hassle.  i'm so tired of having to fill out proposals, write out a cover letter, detail my experience, make everything in line with the proposal and include all pertinent info - this process can take anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes for each proposal.  Not only that, then we have to use anywhere between 4 and 8 connects to be able to submit.

 

Then I submit a proposal, and I may not hear back on it for days, weeks, longer.  Then you just get a notice saying it was cancelled, or your proposal was denied, and UpWork still KEEPS the connects that were wasted.

 

So as a freelancer, I get to spend money to write a proposal, time to write the proposal, and there are no defined deadlines for a client to respond/make a hiring decision.  Not only that, there are no repurcussions for bad-faith actors on here, especially where the hiring side is concerned.  

 

Lately, I've had a lot of solicitations about my work, asking for examples of designs.  I take the time to talk with each prospective client, send examples of my work, and then never hear from them again.  I personally think it's just people that have no real idea how to do design or basic layout, want to do the job themselves or start a business, and they're just here pumping people for free information.  Has anyone else experienced this?  

 

Not only that, but it seems to have been my luck on here that the ONLY work I've received is from people who sought my profile and invited me to bid.  Even though I've taken great time, care, and cost writing over 50 proposals and having been on here for several months, I have NEVER had one proposal accepted.  Again, I'll also never get back the time, money, or other intangible costs that are associated with this.

 

If Upwork doesn't start to work on a model that is fair to both clients and freelancers, and ensures that neither side is going to be wasting a ton of time on bad-faith actors, then I don't see this as being a viable platform.  The 20% take is almost to the point of usury; obviously there's overhead, an infrastructure, IT, maintenance, employees, and they're technically providing a marketplace for freelancers and prospective employers.  HOWEVER, 20% is ridiculous!  I keep getting static from clients that "don't want to spend a lot of money".  But let's get real about this for a minute:

 

Upwork NEEDS to make clear to clients that freelancers are charged 20% right off the top.  So the "higher" rate that they see is not actually what the freelancer is getting paid (now, to be fair maybe they do this already; i've never been a client so i'm just assuming here).  Also, they NEED to get clients to understand that when they hire a freelancer, the cost is the cost.  They aren't paying extra withholdings, benefits, insurance, or any of the other costs that come with hiring a traditional employee. 

 

I'm real tired of these smaller businesses whining about freelance costs, while ignoring the great benefit to the employer.  The freelance market is NOT good for freelancers in its current state, rather it's an exploitation of the worker and removes us from any sort of protections, collective bargaining, etc.

 

So, will Upwork actually take steps to ensure that the process is fair to freelancers as well?  Clients may be providing the money, but if you want to retain reliable and competent talent, then Upwork needs to place a lot of effort in that area. 


Shaun:

 

You're marketing yourself as a "sign professional".  Reading further on your profile I see you're a designer.  There are probably a few jobs on Upwork looking for this niche.  Try creating a more general profile with other capabilities and leave the "Sign Designer" as a specialized profile.  That may help you win more proposals.  

 

Also, no such thing as 8 connects.  I've seen between 1 and 6 connects.  At first most of my desired projects (copywriting) were 6 connects regardless of budget.  I'm now seeing more 2 and 4 connects projects so I'm finding Upwork may have changed their requirements.

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Active Member
Shaun D Member Since: Jun 24, 2019
14 of 42

Hi Robin,

 

Thanks for the info and all, but as I've said, I've had better luck with clients that find me.  Any proposals I've submitted (sign design, general design, or any of the other things I'm qualified for) simply go unanswered.

 

Do you have any comments about the rest of what I've said?  Even if I misspoke about "8 conects*, it still doesn't change the fact that Upwork places the burden on Freelancers and there are ZERO repurcussions for clients who act in bad faith.  

 

That is the crux of my argument; you can debate particulars about why I may or may not be getting denied on the 50+ proposals that I've sent (and I've attached relevant work, outlined my relevant experience to that position, etc.) --- it's very time consuming and there are NO restrictions on clients to answer within a certain time frame.

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Community Guru
Robin H Member Since: May 28, 2019
15 of 42

Shaun D wrote:

Hi Robin,

 

Thanks for the info and all, but as I've said, I've had better luck with clients that find me.  Any proposals I've submitted (sign design, general design, or any of the other things I'm qualified for) simply go unanswered.

 

Do you have any comments about the rest of what I've said?  Even if I misspoke about "8 conects*, it still doesn't change the fact that Upwork places the burden on Freelancers and there are ZERO repurcussions for clients who act in bad faith.  

 

That is the crux of my argument; you can debate particulars about why I may or may not be getting denied on the 50+ proposals that I've sent (and I've attached relevant work, outlined my relevant experience to that position, etc.) --- it's very time consuming and there are NO restrictions on clients to answer within a certain time frame.


Yes Upwork places the burden on freelancers.  It's a platform not the police.  They can verify payment and screen both clients and freelancers all day long but that won't stop the bad ones from joining.  We can't change the system but we can do a better job at flagging the clients that act in bad faith.  We also have the flexibility not to work with someone for any reason at all.  There are pluses and minuses to the freedom, but I'll take it anyday compared to working a 9 to 5 job I hate.  

 

It's your choice to stay or leave to find work somewhere else.  

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Community Guru
Isabelle Anne A Member Since: May 19, 2014
16 of 42

Robin H wrote:


Yes Upwork places the burden on freelancers.  It's a platform not the police.  They can verify payment and screen both clients and freelancers all day long but that won't stop the bad ones from joining.  We can't change the system but we can do a better job at flagging the clients that act in bad faith.  We also have the flexibility not to work with someone for any reason at all.  There are pluses and minuses to the freedom, but I'll take it anyday compared to working a 9 to 5 job I hate.  

 

It's your choice to stay or leave to find work somewhere else.  


It's a little disheartening that every time a freelancer brings up a valid concern about Upwork, someone else posts this. Yes, it's very true that if we don't like it, we can leave, but why shouldn't we call them out when there are good reasons to do so?

 

I agree in that I'd also choose this way of freelancing over a 9 to 5 -- and I'm always going to be very grateful to Upwork for providing this site. But that doesn't mean we should keep quiet when a platform that started out so well gets worse and worse while charging its users more and more money -- with the pretense of doing so for our benefit!

 

At what point does it become enough?

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Community Guru
Tom Z Member Since: Jul 10, 2016
17 of 42

Thank you Isabelle! Exactly, why is there a bunch of "you can use Upwork or leave" posts. Absolutely uncalled for.

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Community Guru
Amanda L Member Since: Jan 23, 2018
18 of 42

Tom Z wrote:

Thank you Isabelle! Exactly, why is there a bunch of "you can use Upwork or leave" posts. Absolutely uncalled for.


Except that's the truth of the matter. The OPs are always asking Upwork to change. Upwork is going to run its own business how they see fit. 

 

Now, if the posts are asking how to use Upwork to its max workability and productivity, then you get different responses. But just posts complaining about how people don't like Upwork? Then leave. If I went to a restaurant and didn't like the food, I wouldn't think to tell the chef to change the menu. I'd just go somewhere else where I do like the food. You don't like Upwork's services, then go to another platform that has the services you do like. No one is forcing you to be here. 

 

Sure, you can leave feedback to Upwork about things that could be changed, but remember that Upwork is a business. They will only implement changes that improve their profitability. So if you suggestion is just about how it would work better for you, then it's probably a waste of time. There are too many fields and too many different kinds of freelancers, clients, and job needs to make one thing better for one freelancer. And as you can see from the posts here, all the FLs disagree on what would be best for them. 

 

Learn to use Upwork's services in a way that produces max profit for you. And if you don't like their services or want different services, sure, you can suggest it, but it's probably more likely that you'll need to go look for that elsewhere. 

 

Also, it's a public community forum. It's not a support group. If you want sugar coating, I can recommend some online support groups that could be helpful. 

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Community Guru
Isabelle Anne A Member Since: May 19, 2014
19 of 42

Amanda L wrote:

Tom Z wrote:

Thank you Isabelle! Exactly, why is there a bunch of "you can use Upwork or leave" posts. Absolutely uncalled for.


Except that's the truth of the matter. The OPs are always asking Upwork to change. Upwork is going to run its own business how they see fit. 

 

Now, if the posts are asking how to use Upwork to its max workability and productivity, then you get different responses. But just posts complaining about how people don't like Upwork? Then leave. If I went to a restaurant and didn't like the food, I wouldn't think to tell the chef to change the menu. I'd just go somewhere else where I do like the food. You don't like Upwork's services, then go to another platform that has the services you do like. No one is forcing you to be here. 

 

Sure, you can leave feedback to Upwork about things that could be changed, but remember that Upwork is a business. They will only implement changes that improve their profitability. So if you suggestion is just about how it would work better for you, then it's probably a waste of time. There are too many fields and too many different kinds of freelancers, clients, and job needs to make one thing better for one freelancer. And as you can see from the posts here, all the FLs disagree on what would be best for them. 

 

Learn to use Upwork's services in a way that produces max profit for you. And if you don't like their services or want different services, sure, you can suggest it, but it's probably more likely that you'll need to go look for that elsewhere. 

 

Also, it's a public community forum. It's not a support group. If you want sugar coating, I can recommend some online support groups that could be helpful. 


What you're saying is very matter of fact, which is fine and true, but remember those words whenever Upwork unleashes on the platform its Talent Specialists, which you complained about in another thread (and which I stongly agreed with you about btw). In the same way, Upwork thinks those TSs are good for business, but they're simply wrong.

 

If enough people complain about a certain (ridiculous) thing, Upwork can reconsider its changes or current practices like it did in the TS debacle a while back. I am not saying that was similar to what the OP is discussing here, but just because you're not affected by / don't care about a specific issue doesn't mean that others have to feel the same.

 

We don't always see how Upwork's features, tweaks, bugs, etc. affect users because only a small number of them come to the forums to complain about them. There are plenty of good clients and very successful freelancers (like you) who quietly quit Upwork in the past few months and year simply because they couldn't be bothered with it anymore. 

 

Maybe that doesn't matter to you, but it matters to me especially because it seems that the "riffraff" didn't leave with them -- it honestly, honestly feels like things are getting worse here. I will keep posting (complaining) as long as Upwork comes up with further money-making tactics while not fixing fundamental issues with its service.

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Community Guru
Robin H Member Since: May 28, 2019
20 of 42

Isabelle Anne A wrote:


What you're saying is very matter of fact, which is fine and true, but remember those words whenever Upwork unleashes on the platform its Talent Specialists, which you complained about in another thread (and which I stongly agreed with you about btw). In the same way, Upwork thinks those TSs are good for business, but they're simply wrong.

 

If enough people complain about a certain (ridiculous) thing, Upwork can reconsider its changes or current practices like it did in the TS debacle a while back. I am not saying that was similar to what the OP is discussing here, but just because you're not affected by / don't care about a specific issue doesn't mean that others have to feel the same.

 

We don't always see how Upwork's features, tweaks, bugs, etc. affect users because only a small number of them come to the forums to complain about them. There are plenty of good clients and very successful freelancers (like you) who quietly quit Upwork in the past few months and year simply because they couldn't be bothered with it anymore. 

 

Maybe that doesn't matter to you, but it matters to me especially because it seems that the "riffraff" didn't leave with them -- it honestly, honestly feels like things are getting worse here. I will keep posting (complaining) as long as Upwork comes up with further money-making tactics while not fixing fundamental issues with its service.


Isabelle:

 

You have every right to complain on the community all day long.  You can reply to each post that reads "if you don't like Upwork, just leave" with your opinions.  What I'm not seeing from your complaints are real actionable things Upwork can do to make things better.  Identify the "fundamental issues with its service" and come up with suggestions.  Volunteer to be part of the groups that ask for freelancer opinions.  

 

I find people who complain are dependent on Upwork for their salary.   This shouldn't be the case.  A successful freelancer works on and off this platform, others and directly with clients.  

 

I wish you tons of luck in your freelance career. 

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