What Should I do ?



Around 2 weeks ago I submitted my request that my work Success Rate I not increasing even after successful Job completion. A wonderful helper here told me to wait 2 weeks ( even though the rate updated 1 day ago & should have accounted for my recent job ) However I thought maybe He is correct.


So I waited for 2 whole weeks thinking that my Success rate will cross 90% from 86% as my job was a success & the employer was quite happy with the service.


but after yesterday’s update It dropped down to 83% ... instead of increasing it dropped ? What is that I studied the formula that was provided by Upwork and it should have gone up not down ..


The only reason I did not apply for jobs in between was due to the fact that I was waiting for the success rate to increase so I have a better chance at acquiring a contract.


In my whole stay here at upwork only  1 of my contracts received less than perfect rating our of my 13 jobs and still I struggling with this ... What is wrong with this system ?


What should I do now ? I am a good freelancer ..  I have not broken any rules ... neither Have I ever offended any anyone .. all my contracts were 5 start except for 2 that were 4.5 .. and still it feels like I am purposefully being stopped from acquiring any new contracts .


I am a skilled contractor I have been in this business for past 7 years .. but I have to say my stay here at Upwork is not been that pleasent.


Please tell me what should I do now ? Should I start looking for another service provided ? I like Upwork I have gotten accustomed to it… I really want a resolution to it.


Nobody is stopping you applying for jobs - you're stopping yourself. A word of advice  (meant genuinely): Do not waste your time waiting for things to happen on Upwork, because as you've found, they can be entirely unpredictable  and random. Just get in there and start applying. Nobody will be able to tell you what to do about your JS, because nobody has a clue how it works (not even the people in Upwork, I truly believe).



Thank You for the reply. 


it was probably the kick I needed, 


However yes I did not apply purposefully as I was waiting for my Top freelancer badge that I should have received had things gone according to the rules .. as I learned that if you standout among the applicants it will increase your chances of getting that job . 


No matter how Good my Cover letter was, or How good are my accomplishments it actually did not matter .. The client seems.. ohh look he has lower success rate why bother even reading what he has written .. .lets move towards the ones who have higher success rates 


In that scenario I would only be wasting my connects as I have done in past month and when a job I know I am perfect for comes up I simply don’t have the connects or success rate to make a difference in the eyes of the client .

It gets frustrating some times when you see the work of the freelancer that was chosen instead of you ( just because he has a higher success rate ) & you know you could have done this job better than this if you had gotten the chance .




What Stephen said.


That Success Rate is based on mythical metrics that you will never know about. I also just learned yesterday that there are two different feedbacks...the one that WE see, and then a private one that the client gives, that we will never see. So in other words, you may get good reviews on your feedback (which is a lie), but secretly the client gave you bad feedback.


I suggest that you carefully select the jobs you want to bid on, write a great cover letter, and if you get a job, do the best job you can. And not worry so much about the Job Success Score. If you are doing good work, you will get jobs. If you aren't getting jobs, maybe it's time for a change of scenery. Just because you aren't successful here, doesn't mean YOU are the one doing something wrong.

A few months ago I was really down as my JS dropped dramatically due to absolutely nothing I had done wrong. Then one day someone asked me: why are you freelancing? Is it for a badge, or to earn money?


That really got me thinking! WAS my value really truly represented by a badge? No. It was NOT!


So I got out of my hole of self-pity and focussed only on what I have power over: what I do, and how well I do it. 


I have absolutely no control of what a client might say about me in private, even if he is wonderful to my face. I have no control over a contract where the client just disappears or leaves no feedback. I have absolutely no control over Upwork's algorithmic god. I have control only over that which I do.


So I thought to myself: Irene, ole hell with that! Just do what you do, and focus on the green that counts! And that is my Upwork motto!

A practical piece of advice - don't shoot all your connects for 2 weeks. Try to spread them evenly throughout the month, so that, for example, even on Sept 30, you have at least 2 connects to use if you see a great job. Also, don't apply to jobs you don't like. Read the job's description. Is it two lines or 100 lines? Does the client write mostly correct English (it doesn't have to be perfect of course, but decent enough)? Don't bother with jobs that are too short. Such clients usually tend to pay very very low, and on top of that treat you **edited for Community Guidelines**. Don't do that to yourself. Value your time and expertise.


Hmm actually I don't agree with you Javier. 


I had the badge for a long time, and honestly, no....I did NOT get MORE jobs because I had it. 


What clients look for is "does the freelancer know what I want and can they do the job?"



I recently had a very enlightening conversation with a client, where she told me that what made me stand out amongst all the other people that had applied...those with little badges included, was that I was the only one who had taken the time, and made the effort, of actually going through her description and addressing each of the points she made, and giving resolutions regarding them.


The rest, she said, either gave a canned, standard proposal, had clearly not read through her description, or tried impressing her with their badge. 


Meh...I'm not complaining.


*Holds up hands* watcha gotta do....Telling you my experience.


I can understand the badge means a lot to you. All the best!


"If I just landed in upwork as a new customer and I see an applicant with a job success <80% I can assure you I would not even get to read her highly detailed application (which is by the way one click away)"


That's because you're in the system. You are a freelancer. You're unable to step away and put yourself in the client's shoes. This is one issue that separates a seller and someone who blows through connects and doesn't understand why. You must be able to put yourself in the client's shoes to understand. A client has 0 clue what we deal with. They just know that there is a difference in score. A person with a killer proposal will more than likely beat out a guy with a lame proposal and a higher JSS.


Irene is right and you are wrong.


"Customers are tired of killer proposals coming from countries we all know and that is why they turn to rating systems."


Yes, people are tired of proposals from people in certain countries. That makes sense.


I know I am new here but in my humble opinion the JS rate or any other rating system should be hidden until the client reads the cover letter at least or at least clicks the cover letter. that ways If we have low JS rate we will still be able to present our skills & point of view regarding that job. 


However saying JS does not have any effect is also wrong, it does have a great first impression, if your JS rate is less than say 80% and there are applicants who have 90% & a Badge whose proposal do you think a new client is going to read ? 


It is good to have a rating system as long it works fairly... as I said I had 13 contracts out of which 11 were 5 stars (I know about the hidden feedback & I know the quality of my work & satisfaction of my clients )  & those clients are still in contact with me for further work.. 2 contracts were 4 & 4.3 star still it was an error in communication & those clients have given my further tasks as well along with bonus. But suddenly my JS rate fell from 89% to 73% ... that happened when Upwork closed a contract of mine where the client simply stopped responding after the work was completed.. he paid me along with the bonus & than stopped responding .. I sent around 50 Emails to the client that at least close the job but of no avail… and that caused my JS rate t fall from 89% to 73% .. at time I was obtain 4/10 contracts I Apply for and once the JS rate fell suddenly there was no contracts available  our of 30 application I sent I only obtain 1 Contract per month .. Can you see my dilemma?


However I still manager to bring my JS rate to 86% after 2 months and after my latest job I expected it to go through 90% but guess what? It fell to 83% … now how is that fair ?

re: "I know I am new here but in my humble opinion the JS rate or any other rating system should be hidden until the client reads the cover letter at least or at least clicks the cover letter. that ways If we have low JS rate we will still be able to present our skills & point of view regarding that job."



Kudos for presenting an interesting, different idea.

I don't think that Upwork will do anything like this. (Requiring clients to read cover letters before seeing a Job Success Score.) But you should know that the first line or two from your cover letter/proposal IS VISIBLE to the client before they can click on anything else or do anything else.


Here is what I see, as a client, in my list of applicants, for EACH applicant:


- First line or first few lines from the cover letter of the contractor's proposal. Or first line from the first question if I'm not including a general cover letter section in the job application.


- Profile photo of contractor

- [Possibly] a big "Recommended" badge affixed there by Upwork if the algorithms think the contractor is a particularly good fit for the job

- Contractor's name

- Contractor's profile page title

- Hourly rate

- Country of residence

- [currently] Star feedback average

- Top Rated badge [if applicable]

- Job Succes Score

- Classification of hours worked on Upwork (e.g. "10+ hours", "100+ hours")


There is really no way to view a list of job candidates without seeing the first line or two from their proposal.


So a savvy contractor doesn't waste those lines repeating things that are already visible (such as their name, where they're from, or information in their profile title).


If I click on "more", then I can see a listing of the contractor's job skill tags (from the top of their profile page). This is an important section to me. I typically look for contractors with specific skills, and those are the skills I want to see listed. I don't want those skills to be missing, and I don't want to see a bunch of unrelated skills. I can't hire a graphic artist who promotes herself as a whiz at C++ programming. Because that tells me they're not a very good graphic artist. (If you are a graphic artist who is a whiz at C++ programming, then just keep that fact to yourself.)


As somebody who has posted many jobs, I can tell you that as a client I am not very interested in reading cover letters. I don't read most of them. If other details that I can see don't catch my eye (including the profile title), then I may never read your cover letter.

Sir Preston 


Thank you for giving a Clients perspective, it does mean a lot & will help me further understand the dynamics of Upwrok.


The "Recommended" stamp is more likely the reason for someone viewing those freelancers. The JS score doesn't even stand out. And there's what like 4 recommended? It's small enough where if the 4 recommended are fail that the customer will move on to the rest of the list. If 1 of the 4 have a killer proposal, yeah I would say they have an advantage.


Everyone is recommended? I thought it was like 4-5 freelancers and then the rest are in a different tab?

Obviously everybody is entitled to have their own opinion.


Mine is that


a) clients will still hire a freelancer with a low(er) SJ score if the freelancer can communicate convincingly that he/she is a very good fit for the client's job.


b) it is actually not that difficult to raise the JS score if it is low(er).



Nobody has said the JS is fair. We have, however, said that it is not the alpha or omega in getting hired for a job.