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elastella
Member

What exactly is private feedback?

Until just now I was convinced that private feedback provided by clients has to do with the "clients who would recommend you"-stats. 

 

Now I am beginning to wonder if it is even more private than that...

 

So, can somebody enlighten me as to what clients are being asked when prompted to leave this mysterious private feedback? 

 

Thanks

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suznee
Member


@Ela K wrote:

Until just now I was convinced that private feedback provided by clients has to do with the "clients who would recommend you"-stats. 

 

Now I am beginning to wonder if it is even more private than that...

 

So, can somebody enlighten me as to what clients are being asked when prompted to leave this mysterious private feedback? 

 

Thanks


The private section asks the client why the contract is being ended and if he or she would hire the freelancer again for a similar project. This section is not visible to the contractor or the oDesk community.

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38 REPLIES 38
suznee
Member


@Ela K wrote:

Until just now I was convinced that private feedback provided by clients has to do with the "clients who would recommend you"-stats. 

 

Now I am beginning to wonder if it is even more private than that...

 

So, can somebody enlighten me as to what clients are being asked when prompted to leave this mysterious private feedback? 

 

Thanks


The private section asks the client why the contract is being ended and if he or she would hire the freelancer again for a similar project. This section is not visible to the contractor or the oDesk community.

Yes, that's what I thought. After today I wasn't sure anymore.

Thanks for clarifying.

kugrin
Member

Ela, clients are also asked "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague" on a scale of 0 to 10. It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS.

 

I believe that this score is responsible for most of the JS drops and freelancers might want to consider asking their client "how likely would you be to recommend me to a colleague" to prep them for the question before the contract ends. It's not allowed to ask for a specific rating, but I don't think clients are aware that they could destroy someone's future on oDesk by giving them an 8! (Which is like a B or B+ and surely not a bad rating!)


@Krisztina U wrote:

Ela, clients are also asked "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague" on a scale of 0 to 10. It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS.

 

I believe that this score is responsible for most of the JS drops and freelancers might want to consider asking their client "how likely would you be to recommend me to a colleague" to prep them for the question before the contract ends. It's not allowed to ask for a specific rating, but I don't think clients are aware that they could destroy someone's future on oDesk by giving them an 8! (Which is like a B or B+ and surely not a bad rating!)


Just a quick note on this there are many people that will not leave a 10 or 9 because they think that is perfection and will never leave it no matter how good the freelancer does they will never leave a 10 or 9 for anything restaurant review, movie review, book reviews it's just the type of people they are 


@Donna M wrote:

@Krisztina U wrote:

Ela, clients are also asked "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague" on a scale of 0 to 10. It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS.

 

I believe that this score is responsible for most of the JS drops and freelancers might want to consider asking their client "how likely would you be to recommend me to a colleague" to prep them for the question before the contract ends. It's not allowed to ask for a specific rating, but I don't think clients are aware that they could destroy someone's future on oDesk by giving them an 8! (Which is like a B or B+ and surely not a bad rating!)


Just a quick note on this there are many people that will not leave a 10 or 9 because they think that is perfection and will never leave it no matter how good the freelancer does they will never leave a 10 or 9 for anything restaurant review, movie review, book reviews it's just the type of people they are 


Well, 10 on a scale of 1-10 IS perfection. It's saying "It couldn't get any better".  That's a little fuzzier in the likely to recommend question, because there are so many factors that go into that and the real answer is probably often "it depends". But, with a general rating system, the lowest number is "the worst" and the highest "the best". So, if something could have been better, it wasn't a ten. 


@Krisztina U wrote:

Ela, clients are also asked "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague" on a scale of 0 to 10. It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS.

 

I believe that this score is responsible for most of the JS drops and freelancers might want to consider asking their client "how likely would you be to recommend me to a colleague" to prep them for the question before the contract ends. It's not allowed to ask for a specific rating, but I don't think clients are aware that they could destroy someone's future on oDesk by giving them an 8! (Which is like a B or B+ and surely not a bad rating!)


Just to clarify further: the question is "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague". There are not 2 questions with the other one being "would you hire the freelancer again", right? 

It is excatly the same thing that freelancers are being prompted to answer when leaving feedback for a client.

Or am I mistaken?

Trust me, I have a reason to ask.

 

Thanks a lot.


@Ela K wrote:

@Krisztina U wrote:

Ela, clients are also asked "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague" on a scale of 0 to 10. It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS.

 

I believe that this score is responsible for most of the JS drops and freelancers might want to consider asking their client "how likely would you be to recommend me to a colleague" to prep them for the question before the contract ends. It's not allowed to ask for a specific rating, but I don't think clients are aware that they could destroy someone's future on oDesk by giving them an 8! (Which is like a B or B+ and surely not a bad rating!)


Just to clarify further: the question is "how likely they would be to recommend the freelancer to a colleague". There are not 2 questions with the other one being "would you hire the freelancer again", right? 

It is excatly the same thing that freelancers are being prompted to answer when leaving feedback for a client.

Or am I mistaken?

Trust me, I have a reason to ask.

 

Thanks a lot.


Ela, I do believe it's the same screen that freelancers see, but I am not 100% sure because as a freelancer, I've only had one contract close in years and I didn't pay much attention to the rating screen. I've closed more contracts from the client interface, and there is an additional subsection where we can select what we liked best about the freelancer (like communication, adherence to deadlines, skills etc.), but I don't remember the exact wording. I'll have a contract close soon, so if no one else jumps in with a reply, I'll post a screenshot later this week.

"It's been confirmed by the moderators that a rating of less than 9 is viewed as unfavorable, and will impact the JS."

 

Well I hope the moderators are mistaken, because that is one of the most shocking and ridiculous things I've heard about the system yet.

 

I would be hesitant to score someone a 9 or 10! That's incredibly high and should be reserved for absolute superstars. But that doesn't mean a 7 or 8 isn't great!

 

It's no wonder my JS keeps fluctuating!

Isabelle, the moderators are not mistaken. I've seen evidence of it in action...

Uhhh!

Now I understand a lot of things!

Is anyone at the wheel? Yeah, but is not going our way!.

 

 

I'm seeing two questions mentioned here as part of private feedback...

 

On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely would you be to recommend this contractor?

and

Why did the contract end? (answer selected from a dropdown menu, which includes "Job Completed Successfully").

 

These are NOT the only questions presented to clients as part of private feedback.

 

Sometimes clients are asked to evaluate the English language proficiency of the contractor they worked with.

 

One of the options is to say that you didn't really speak with the contractor, so you don't know.

 

ANOTHER question asks you to specify what are the strengths of the contractor, and you can choose things such as "job skills" or "communication" and a few other options. You may check all boxes, or none. There is an option to check "other" and type in something.

Is there any way we freelancers can petition Upwork about changing the algorithm for this particuclar metric? I have all five star ratings and great feedback. I am top rated but fairly new, so changes to job activity could not have affected my score, which just dropped from 100% to 96%. It must be because of private feedback and, as mentioned on this thread, an 8 should not be considered a bad rating! 


@Christie Ann B wrote:

Is there any way we freelancers can petition Upwork about changing the algorithm for this particuclar metric? 


You can petition Upwork if you want, no problem with this. They will not change the algorithm at all, but they will let you petition.

 

My JSS in currently at 96%, dropped from 99% due to a contract that I canceled and I'm fine with it. It's a great score. I don't want to petition, mostly because after having spent some time on Upwork, I now understand how it prevents people from tricking the star-rating system.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless


@Rene K wrote:

@Christie Ann B wrote:

Is there any way we freelancers can petition Upwork about changing the algorithm for this particuclar metric? 


You can petition Upwork if you want, no problem with this. They will not change the algorithm at all, but they will let you petition.

 

My JSS in currently at 96%, dropped from 99% due to a contract that I canceled and I'm fine with it. It's a great score. I don't want to petition, mostly because after having spent some time on Upwork, I now understand how it prevents people from tricking the star-rating system.


 Rene - you may be fine with 96% - but if you received a 3% drop from one review - a few more and you could be below 90% - would you be fine with that?


@Tim S wrote:

 Rene - you may be fine with 96% - but if you received a 3% drop from one review - a few more and you could be below 90% - would you be fine with that?


I would be mad and I would put a lot of thinking about the way I managed those recent contracts that made my JSS plunge.

 

I would do some constructive self-criticism and would work towards fixing the reasons for the drop in JSS.

 

I already draw conclusions about my drop from 99% to 96% and learned something in the process.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless


@Rene K wrote:

@Tim S wrote:

 Rene - you may be fine with 96% - but if you received a 3% drop from one review - a few more and you could be below 90% - would you be fine with that?


I would be mad and I would put a lot of thinking about the way I managed those recent contracts that made my JSS plunge.

 

I would do some constructive self-criticism and would work towards fixing the reasons for the drop in JSS.

 

I already draw conclusions about my drop from 99% to 96% and learned something in the process.


 And that's great.  I agree with your advocacy of self-criticism - it's an intelligent and responsible methodology.

 

But if the drop in JSS is due to hidden feedback - which is what seems to be the focus on this thread - it is often not possible to identify which client was dissatisfied - which then leads to the possibility of mislead self-criticism, or just plain confusion and upset.  

You're right @Tim. When your JSS drops every blue moon, identifying the issue may be hard. But in this case, it goes up before it goes down again.

 

If your JSS slides down every two weeks or so, it's a sign that there is something that you are doing wrong. It may be the quality of your work, it may not be as good as you think it is, or it's the compliance to deadlines, or you are not good with communication.

 

I think that someone who sees their JSS dropping for a long period has enough info to start thinking about what it is that they are doing wrong.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless

My score dropped once, and I am sure it is because of this metric only. As others have mentioned, most reasonable prudent people would not consider an 8 a low score. I think it's just human nature to click on 7 or 8 for private feedback, especially when you offer excellent public feedback, I mean, nobody is perfect, right? This also seems more likely to happen when a client has little personal-level contact with a freelancer. A 7 or 8 could easily mean "good work, but don't know well enough to recommend 100%".

 

It would just be nice if Upwork considered making the 7-8-9 scores a bit less 'heavy' on the algorithm. 


@Christie Ann B wrote:

My score dropped once, and I am sure it is because of this metric only. As others have mentioned, most reasonable prudent people would not consider an 8 a low score. I think it's just human nature to click on 7 or 8 for private feedback, especially when you offer excellent public feedback, I mean, nobody is perfect, right? This also seems more likely to happen when a client has little personal-level contact with a freelancer. A 7 or 8 could easily mean "good work, but don't know well enough to recommend 100%".

 

It would just be nice if Upwork considered making the 7-8-9 scores a bit less 'heavy' on the algorithm. 


It's good that you're sure about the reason for the drop in your JSS. I don't know how you can be sure but you seem confident about knowing the reason, so I'm gonna to admit that you're right.

 

When clients rate on the private scale, from 1 to 10, they may indeed have different references. This effect, however, is stronger when you have only few jobs and weaker when you have more jobs. Thus, with time passing, you will see less and less fluctuations in your JSS due to one single contract.

 

You have a nice profile right now, just keep doing great work and you may find an ally in the JSS.

 

And I am confident that you totally understood that my remark about people tempering with the rating scores was not intended for you.

 

 

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless

Thanks for the info and compliment. I feel sure because I have not yet made it to the six-month mark (so that piece is not included), all public feedback is 5-star, and all contracts have been closed successfully by the client in a timely manner. But! Right now I am in the middle of a nightmare situation with a scam artist (my bad for not realizing before I accepted the job) and I am worried about the outcome. Thus far it has not been resolved by Upwork support. Certainly the possibility of such things happening from time to time is enough to deal with, being penalized for a 7, 8 or 9 in private feedback is over the top... 

Rene, as I mentioned, I considered every option and am sure the drop in score is directly related to this metric. 

The lengths some of you go to defend Upworks half-baked policies astounds me.

 

Really, Rene? It's all about what we, the freelancer did wrong? How about in my case, when the client was "moving fast" (his words when he apologized profusely) and clicked some random number, dropping my JSS 9 points? How would you advise I "do some constructive self-criticsm" in that situation? 

 

Face it. The system is garbage, and as others have pointed out, many clients WILL NOT give a 9 or 10, even if they are thoroughly satisfied with the end product. It's who they are. And in their mind, giving an 8 or even a 7 is a perfectly "good" rating. They have no idea that it does serious damage to someone's ability to get future work on this platform. 


@Joshua T wrote:

The lengths some of you go to defend Upworks half-baked policies astounds me.

 

Really, Rene? It's all about what we, the freelancer did wrong? How about in my case, when the client was "moving fast" (his words when he apologized profusely) and clicked some random number, dropping my JSS 9 points? How would you advise I "do some constructive self-criticsm" in that situation? 

 

Face it. The system is garbage, and as others have pointed out, many clients WILL NOT give a 9 or 10, even if they are thoroughly satisfied with the end product. It's who they are. And in their mind, giving an 8 or even a 7 is a perfectly "good" rating. They have no idea that it does serious damage to someone's ability to get future work on this platform. 


The problem is that it SHOULDN'T do damage. Saying there's an 80% likelihood that you'd recommend someone in the future is a positive rating, and the client should be able to leave that honest rating without doing harm. The key isn't to push clients to lie in private feedback the way social norms have pushed them to lie in star ratings, but to adopt a realistic view of what those numbers mean. 

Yes, that is exactly what I mean. A four percent drop seems pretty high given that I am sure it is due to this calculation, and also fairly sure that my clients would not have given me less than an 8 (considering the public feedback and my subjective evaluations of client relationships). --plus I am not sure what Rene is referring to; I am not suggesting tricking the system...

I think one has to stop obsessing about it. I dropped from 100% to 92% a couple of weeks ago, and I know exactly why. I'm back at 100%, so I'm planning to close a couple of contracts, which will bring my score down again.

 

I agree with René, if the score goes too low, then it is time for a little self-analysis. To which I add an adopted Gallic shrug of the shoulders!

😉

 

I can confirm that private feedback can negatively effect the job success score.  I have even been told that it can be more of a contributing factor than public feedback.

 

I would love to help organize to effect changes to the job success score process.  Very few freelancers seem to agree that it is free of significant issues.

I think that would be great! Perhaps focusing on one metric would also help a petition succeed. I wouldn't doubt in the least that private feedback carries more weight, and I think that is totally unfair. As an adjunct professor, I know well how much weight anonymous evaluations carry, particularly the question asking how likely a student would be to recommend a professor on a scale from 1-10. Those evals have been criticized by nearly every professional in higher education, and I do not want to be subjected to the same thing on Upwork. When someone takes ownership of their feedback it should carry more weight than when they are being secretive (no better than cheap gossip). At the very least, a 7-8-9 score should not cause a significant drop in JSS. 


@Christie Ann B wrote:

I think that would be great! Perhaps focusing on one metric would also help a petitioin succeed. I wouldn't doubt in the least that private feedback carries more weight, and I think that is totally unfair. As an adjunct professor, I know well how much weight anonymous evaluations carry, particularly the question asking how likely a student would be to reccomend a professor on a scale from 1-10. Those evals have been criticized by nearly every professional in higher education, and I do not want to be subjected to the same thing on Upwork. When someone takes ownership of their feedback it should carry more weight than when they are being secretive (no better than cheap gossip). At the very least, a 7-8-9 score should not cause a significant drop in JSS. 


The problem is, that we are not in a university setting. We are in a business setting. Whether you are a professor or not, does not have the slightest bearing on Upwork's business model (however one might disagree with it). The evaluations are not based on student performance but on the performance of already qualified people who are judged on their ability to contribute to the financial well-being of the company. 

 

 

 


The problem is, that we are not in a university setting. We are in a business setting. Whether you are a professor or not, does not have the slightest bearing on Upwork's business model (however one might disagree with it). The evaluations are not based on student performance but on the performance of already qualified people who are judged on their ability to contribute to the financial well-being of the company. 

 

 



 

I don't think the context matters here, it's the metric itself, which is used to assign a quality rating to a person (and fails). It's similar on Upwork and in the classroom (same question, same weight). There are many reasons why someone might click 7 or 8 rather than 10 (none of which are considered in the algorithm).

 

I just read a public feedback in which the client says that her private feedback may have negatively impacted the freelancer's score (she hurriedly clicked on anything just to get past the window and rehire the freelancer!). She said she was unable to change her private feedback, even after reaching out to Upwork, and practically begged for forgiveness for inadvertendly affecting the freelancer's score while insisting that clients realize his worth. How many other clients are doing the same thing?

Clients and Freelancers clicking on the wrong box certainly happens every now and then. I agree that there should be a short timeframe which would allow people to edit their ratings.

 

I doubt, however, that misclicks happens so frequently that it massively impacts JSSes.

 

But I still think that a feedback should be editable within a short period after it is left.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless

re: "Is there any way we freelancers can petition Upwork about changing the algorithm for this particuclar metric?"

 

Yes, there is a way.

You can post your suggestions, criticisms, complaints, etc. here in the Community Forum.

I have had exactly the same problem. I shall withdraw from this platform. I have been working with Elance for a long time without any problem. Upwork is a total mess. 

cupidmedia
Member

I've talked about how the private feedback rating is similar to the Net Promoter Score before here: link. I think my post in that thread is relevant to this discussion.

What exactly is private feedback?

 

It is the no-holds-barred license to kill (that even 007 doesn’t have).

 

A great private feedback has the effect of a fly landing on a rhino.

 

A lousy private feedback has the effect of a rhino landing on a fly.

 

Not a pretty sight. Smiley Sad

"Certa bonum certamen"

Sorry for stepping in kind of late here LOL: 

 

But my question is: Can other buyers/clients see any of the private feedback given by previous clients, or is it just Upwork employees or even just machines "reading" these private comments?

 

Thanks guys, -Gert S.


Gert S wrote:

Sorry for stepping in kind of late here LOL: 

 

But my question is: Can other buyers/clients see any of the private feedback given by previous clients, or is it just Upwork employees or even just machines "reading" these private comments?

 

Thanks guys, -Gert S.


Other clients cannot see private feedback. 


Gert S wrote:

Sorry for stepping in kind of late here LOL: 

 

But my question is: Can other buyers/clients see any of the private feedback given by previous clients, or is it just Upwork employees or even just machines "reading" these private comments?

 

Thanks guys, -Gert S.


They can see it in the sense that your JSS score is mainly a reflection of your private feedback.

Thank you, Tonya and Christine - makes sense