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The "Absentee Client"

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Community Guru
Ronald T Member Since: Sep 14, 2009
1 of 8

I have written about this before, yet Upwork does not provide any reasonable and fair solution for freelancers that share my current situation. OK, we all know about public and private feedback and ratings, JS scores, constant conflicting changes, buggy site performance, failed Upwork incentives; and, of course, freelancers being unfairly judged by Upwork for the slightest infractions or shortcomings. In addition, it appears to be a well-established fact that Upwork could care less about loosing good freelancers; and based on available jobs, Upwork apparently has great difficulty getting and keeping quality clients.

 

My last six jobs with my last four clients on Upwork have been terrible. My only current job, which was supposed to be completed within 45 days is about six months old now due to an "absentee client"; that is, a client that disappears for weeks and even months on end. Now he is requesting quotes for work outside of the agreed to scope of work (aka "scope creep"), which I have no intention of doing on the current "closed-end" contract.

 

Despite my not caring any longer about working on Upwork or not, I would like to end my tour here with a perfect record. There needs to be a way for freelancers to request from Upwork and be granted ending of a contract for "administrative reasons" -- for reasons beyond the control of the freelancer -- ending a contract with no public or private feedback or ratings in any direction -- a neutral option that would not effect the freelancer's ratings, feedback, JS scores or any other factors effecting the freelancer's reputation.

 

This "absentee client" stated in an email this month that upon completion of a couple more requests, which were completely satisfactorily as evident in the client's subsequent emails, he would end the contract as previously agreed. That is, with positive 'public' feedback and 5.0 ratings in all rated categories in addition to positive 'private' feedback with a rating of 10.

 

Of course, he's no where to be found again. Apparently, Upwork's lack of control over clients is why so many freelancers have stagnate jobs still listed as "in progress"; a very deceiving factor within many freelancers' profiles.

Community Guru
Tracye G Member Since: Sep 30, 2008
2 of 8

I have clients that have been missing in action for years!

 

I have come to the conclusion, upworks hates their freelancers more than they like making money.

I do not think they have any intention what so ever to fix anything.

I am now convinced they are ALL out to lunch until we leave. I really believe they have their own work force in the wings.

Community Guru
Ronald T Member Since: Sep 14, 2009
3 of 8

Hi Tracye! You wrote in part: "...they have their own work force in the wings...." That's something I had not considered before. "Their own work force" as in one of the world's largest collective workforces, akin to Walmart (lol), another Sitel perhaps....

 

At the core might be the three "New Premium Talent Programs": Pro Web Designers, Upwork Pro for Mobile Developers, and Pro Customer Service (Ref: Freelancers Union "Upwork introduces programs to help top freelancers earn more" https://www.freelancersunion.org/blog/2015/05/18/upwork-formerly-odesk-introduces-programs-help-top-... ).

 

 "Their own work force" all driven by the new "Instamatch" and the "3 minute" matching of clients to freelancers (Ref: The Australian "Freelance firm Elance-oDesk becomes Upwork" http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/latest/freelance-firm-elance-odesk-becomes-upwork/story-e6f... ). Investment in those Stanford PhDs is sure making a difference isn't it! It's a lot like when long ago companies were hiring masses of MBAs to run manufacturing firms. You would have to have been there at that time to know what I mean.

 

I have noticed more uniformity in the formatting of email signatures from Upwork. For instance:

 

name | title

Upwork | Location

 

Especially, locations like: "Upwork | San Francisco, CA" vs. "Upwork | Philippines"

 

Are remote workers in the Philippines that work for Upwork using the same email signature formatting by chance, or is there (or are there plans for) an Upwork office (call center for Pro Customer Service) in the Philippines?

Community Guru
Krisztina U Member Since: Aug 7, 2009
4 of 8

@Ronald T wrote:

Apparently, Upwork's lack of control over clients is why so many freelancers have stagnate jobs still listed as "in progress"; a very deceiving factor within many freelancers' profiles.


It's not so much Upwork's lack of control over clients, as it is their reluctance to correct course. It's almost as if someone decided that no feedback equaled bad feedback, and is now too proud to correct it. Way too much ego seems to be at (up)work. I can only hope that the Upwork support team and general staff is evaluated on the same parameters and that each support ticket that was not rated will be viewed as unsatisfactory.

Community Guru
Ronald T Member Since: Sep 14, 2009
5 of 8

Off-topic: Similar to the "Top Rated" discussion group that is seen only by Top Rated freelancers, is there a new hidden discussion group named "Ask Preston"? I wasn't invited Smiley Sad

Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
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6 of 8

Hi Ronald,

 

I understand your frustration with an unresponsive client and appreciate your suggestion about an option to close a contract for "administrative reasons" so it doesn't count in the score. However, it would create some room for abuse.

 

In your case however, "no feedback" doesn't mean "bad feedback," unless jobs without feedback constitute the majority of your Work History (which is not the case). If your client doesn't respond, you can go ahead and end the contract yourself. Unless the client provides negative feedback, this job will not affect yout score negatively.

~ Valeria
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Community Guru
Ronald T Member Since: Sep 14, 2009
7 of 8

Thank you for your reply Valeria. I am going to end the contract without informing the client in hopes that he just ignores it and does not leave feedback or ratings for which if he would be honest should be excellent in all aspects. It's hard to trust the integrity of clients on Upwork these days.

Community Guru
Tracye G Member Since: Sep 30, 2008
8 of 8

"It's hard to trust the integrity of clients on Upwork these days."

 

That is because there is NO integrity on this system anymore. We the freelancer assume ALL the risk..the client NO RISK and upworks NO RISK. upworks does NOT GIVE RIP!!!

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