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What is "Auto Check-ins"?

wescowley
Community Guru
Wes C Member Since: May 3, 2019
141 of 162

Slavko A wrote:

Wait if this auto cheek-in thing works , then we need a option of auto close contract, if client do not answer question why contract is still open in 7 days , then contract get close by UpWork without negative impact on JSS.

What you think about this?


No no no no no. I, and I'm sure many others here, have contracts that are open for a very long time with sporadic work. We don't need weekly prompts asking if it should stay open, just like we don't need weekly prompts asking how it's going. 

jorgensons
Community Guru
Signe J Member Since: Jan 29, 2016
142 of 162

So far this month, I've been hired for two jobs -- and they've both enabled this asinine auto-check in feature. One is an hourly job, so fine, I'll do it and get paid for the 5 minutes I spend providing information I've already provided in the course of normal professional communication. If that's what the client wants, I'll begrudgingly do it since I'm being compensated.

But the fixed price one? Where I'm not getting paid? No thanks. I will be ignoring those emails since they weren't part of the contract discussion, there's no additional compensation, and my client will already have the information because...you know...I'm a professional who communicates with my clients. My understanding is that there's no penalty for refusing to participate. Someone please let me know if I'm wrong.

On Upwork, the bulk of my jobs consist of writing or updating resumes and LinkedIn profiles. These are small jobs, which means I often have 5 or more active projects at a time, plus a dozen or so inactive contracts for ongoing jobs. (And for clients who, despite multiple promptings, have not closed contracts on their own.) If auto check-in becomes the norm -- and it seems like it will be based on my recent experience -- this means I'll have 17+ pointless, redundant progress reports to write each Friday. At 5 minutes each, that's almost an hour and a half of my time being wasted. About half of these jobs are flat fee, so that's about 45 minutes of wasted time that's also unpaid. On a Friday afternoon. When I just want to finish my work and start my weekend. Hell no.

As usual, Upwork has no idea what kind of burden it's actually placing on freelancers with its supposedly helpful innovations. This helps NO ONE, not even the freelancers who are so unprofessional that they don't know how to communicate. Getting an email isn't going to change their behavior; they're already ignoring emails/messages from clients. Why does Upwork think they'll do anything but ignore these emails as well? Meanwhile, the good freelancers -- the professionals who make the bulk of the money on this site -- are punished. It makes no sense.

m_terrazas
Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
143 of 162

Signe J wrote:

So far this month, I've been hired for two jobs -- and they've both enabled this asinine auto-check in feature. One is an hourly job, so fine, I'll do it and get paid for the 5 minutes I spend providing information I've already provided in the course of normal professional communication. If that's what the client wants, I'll begrudgingly do it since I'm being compensated.

But the fixed price one? Where I'm not getting paid? No thanks. I will be ignoring those emails since they weren't part of the contract discussion, there's no additional compensation, and my client will already have the information because...you know...I'm a professional who communicates with my clients. My understanding is that there's no penalty for refusing to participate. Someone please let me know if I'm wrong.

On Upwork, the bulk of my jobs consist of writing or updating resumes and LinkedIn profiles. These are small jobs, which means I often have 5 or more active projects at a time, plus a dozen or so inactive contracts for ongoing jobs. (And for clients who, despite multiple promptings, have not closed contracts on their own.) If auto check-in becomes the norm -- and it seems like it will be based on my recent experience -- this means I'll have 17+ pointless, redundant progress reports to write each Friday. At 5 minutes each, that's almost an hour and a half of my time being wasted. About half of these jobs are flat fee, so that's about 45 minutes of wasted time that's also unpaid. On a Friday afternoon. When I just want to finish my work and start my weekend. Hell no.

As usual, Upwork has no idea what kind of burden it's actually placing on freelancers with its supposedly helpful innovations. This helps NO ONE, not even the freelancers who are so unprofessional that they don't know how to communicate. Getting an email isn't going to change their behavior; they're already ignoring emails/messages from clients. Why does Upwork think they'll do anything but ignore these emails as well? Meanwhile, the good freelancers -- the professionals who make the bulk of the money on this site -- are punished. It makes no sense.


I also understand that there will be no penalty from Upwork if questions are not answered.
But I have the doubt. What about the customer? Client has activated the questions, so I assume that client will want to receive an answer.
If I do not answer, it is possible that the client takes that wrong, and the one who will penalize me may be the client.

jorgensons
Community Guru
Signe J Member Since: Jan 29, 2016
144 of 162


I also understand that there will be no penalty from Upwork if questions are not answered.
But I have the doubt. What about the customer? Client has activated the questions, so I assume that client will want to receive an answer.
If I do not answer, it is possible that the client takes that wrong, and the one who will penalize me may be the client.


I'm optimistic -- perhaps too optimistic -- that strong communication and building good relationships with my clients will overcome not responding to an auto-message. I guess we'll see. 

penngrp
Ace Contributor
Jeffrey B Member Since: Jan 8, 2016
145 of 162

I have done numerous projects over the years, andI have seen older comments regarding the topic of auto check-ins, but never experienced it; that is until now. My last two projects all of a sudden have stated "auto check-in enabled"...Seriously? I think I am fully capable of communicating with my clients, 

There are many other areas that Upwork could improve; such as the order and time in which proposals are shown to clients, (Hint Hint).

wlyonsatl
Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
146 of 162

Whose great idea was it to initiate this new "feature"?

 

I have 12 - 14 open projects at any given time. Will an algorithm-driven nanny see that I receive these oh-so-useful questions for every project every Friday?

 

If you insist on wasting my time on these unhelpful questions every Friday, you are not going to like my answers.

 

QUOTE
Upwork
3:52 PM EST, 24 Nov 2020
Auto Check-ins help keep everyone on the same page. Every Friday, we’ll ask Will to answer three key questions that help keep the project on track:

>What did you work on this week?
What will you work on next week?
What might delay your planned work?

 

UNQUOTE

 

Or maybe I should just tell you my answers now:

 

1) Improving my golf game

2) Improving my golf game

3) Not improving my golf game as much as I'd like to.

 

wlyonsatl
Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
147 of 162

Yesterday I accepted a contract from a new client. He then signed us up for the new Auto-Check-Ins “feature.”

 

This is how our conversation went in regards to that choice:

 

Me: You're my first client to use the Auto Check-in feature. I've never had a complaint from a client that I don't communicate regularly and well during a project, but I'll be happy to answer these three questions each week. This will probably take me about 15 - 20 minutes each week, which you'll see detailed in my weekly work hours report from Upwork.

 

Client: Oh, I didn't know if that was something that was common. Can I change it?

 

Me: I don't know. It's a new "feature" Upwork has recently introduced. Please let me know if you can't find a way to make that change.

 

Client: I removed it.

 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


I suggest freelancers now ask potential clients if they will want weekly Auto-Check-Ins and inform these clients that they’ll be happy to spend the time on answering the three questions each week, which will add $ ____ to the total cost of the project.

 

It’s only fair that each client should fully understand the total cost of their project.

feed_my_eyes
Community Guru
Christine A Member Since: May 4, 2016
148 of 162

Good call. So far, no clients have asked me for that (thankfully), and I don't want anything to do with it, even if they do pay for my time. If somebody does request it, I plan to say something to the effect that I will give them regular updates and if they feel like there's anything lacking in my communication, they can then go ahead and enable this [stupid and unnecessary] feature. (Which is the message that Upwork ought to be giving clients, but... whatever.)

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
149 of 162

I've only had one turn it on and I just ignored it.

97fb76d3
Active Member
Kat P Member Since: Apr 1, 2017
150 of 162

This thread began almost three months ago and still has no positive comments. This feature is still active today, annoying clients (like mine) and freelancers (like me).

 

I didn't even know it existed a week ago and briefly considered dropping the client who activated it. Fortunately, it occurred to me that UW may have nudged her to it. Good thing I know how UW conducts business, because she turned out to be a great client who's just new to the platform.

 

Like one of the previous commenters, she clicked the "helpful" popup and didn't know how to turn it off. I searched the forum for the answer and - what a surprise - found a 14-page thread of negative feedback.

 

Why burden the system and its users to continue a test that has already failed? Who benefits from it besides its developers?

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