I had a very successful run back when this site was E-lance.com. I got my first few small jobs in as a new account and quickly got stellar reviews and within a week or two I was getting flooded with invites and responses to bids. Thanks to that work I ended up getting hired on full-time to a company and worked for them close to 3 years until their needs dried up and I left the company running like a well-oiled, automated machine.
I signed back onto Upwork (having updated all my profile points when it originally transitioned from E-Lance halfway through that time) thinking finding work again would be a breeze. The first thing I noticed was this "connects" thing being added which meant I could only put out so many bids. But I wasn't worried because of the success I had in the past with finding work quickly and/or frequently. So after using up all of my connects, I'm still sitting here a month later and I haven't even had more than 6 profile views after 30 bids and a month of waiting. I got one invite for an unrelated position I was less than ideal for and I honestly expressed that to the client, but otherwise, nothing. Dry as a bone.
So one thing that stood out to me was that every single job posting required a "job success score" of 90%+ - of which Upwork continuously alerted me that I did not qualify for. This made no sense to me and curiously I looked over my stats and sure enough I had no job success score. Upon further research I found out that inactivity would lead to this, even though my reviews were stellar with one exception of a client who forgot to leave a rating for a quickie job I did early on in my run.
Is there any way I can get a support person to rig up my profile to show a score calculated on my existing ratings and jobs, even though they're from a few years ago? If those ratings were taken into account surely i'd have almost 100%, but this new scoring system is barring me from finding work! Why punish someone for being inactive for a stretch due to getting picked up? This seems to punish freelancers unfairly for inactivity, but as anyone could tell you making a (decent) living solely off Upwork is not really viable given the low-balling clientele and swathes of freelancers offering to work for $1/hr for a job that normally should be paying at least $25 for entry level work.
Color me baffled, but this seems completely backwards on Upwork's part and counter-intuitive to skilled workers who would come here hoping to find a job. What can I do?
You only have one completed contract inside the 2 year maximum calculation window, so no, you won't get a JSS until you have 4 or so completed contracts (within a 2 year rolling window)
However, you can still apply for jobs even when there is a JSS requirement, just make your proposal really strong.
Upwork IS very competitive now, as you have noticed, but it is still possible to make very good money.
As Petra pointed out, Job Success score is calculated based on your activity in the last 2 years and currently you don't have enough contracts in this time period for the score to be calculated. Your past Elance and Upwork work history is still showing on your profile and can be viewed by potential clients. Once you complete more contracts, JSS will be displayed on your profile.