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2a4572c4
Community Member

Can I avoid a bad review if a client is asking me to go off Upwork and I say no?

I accepted a job with a new client and she immediately scheduled a zoom where she asked me to communicate with her via email and proposed the idea that after finishing a one-month hourly job on the platform, she would like to work with me via a direct contract so that she would not have to use the Upwork platform to pay me.

 

I thought this might be an option that could be done with Upwork's approval, so I told her I would look into it but thought it would be okay. After researching this further, I realized the Upwork direct contract is not for clients that have a profile on Upwork so I told her this is not allowed and could put me at risk of being banned from Upwork but am now afraid that she will retaliate by giving me a bad review when the current contract with her ends and I am wondering if it would be better to end this job before things get potentially worse. 

 

After working with her for the last two weeks I am sensing why she may have wanted to go off the site. We have an hourly contract agreement and I am using the Upwork Time clock so I clearly am tracking the work I am doing for her but she is acting like I am a salaried worker that is expected to deliver what she wants regardless of how long the tasks actually take. I am sensing that she wants to pay me for one hour of work, but wants me to do more work than is possible within the hour. Her tactic is to imply that I am not doing a good job following directions if I am not getting all the tasks she wants done. Despite the Upwork Time Clock clearly monitoring the social media tasks that I am doing which are taking up the entire 1 hour a day of work that she has limited me to. I feel I am being covertly pressured to work unbilled hours.

 

I have only had 3 jobs on the platform and am afraid a bad review from her will really affect me. If I report her to Upwork will her account be blocked and will they stop her from retaliating with a bad review? If that is not an option, should I leave her a bad review explaining what happened? Will that help me when new clients see her comments? Could she read my bad review and then change hers to be even more damaging to me? Is there a chance she will see my comment here or is this community area only for freelancers? 

 

Thank you for your advice, 

Mariana

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feed_my_eyes
Community Member

Unfortunately, every time you accept a new project from a client, you run the risk that they'll give you a bad review; that's just part of working here. Over time, you'll get better at vetting clients and will know not to accept a job in the first place if something seems off. But for now, there'll be a learning curve.

 

IMO, you can't really report the client at this point. If she asked to go off platform and you said that you couldn't do that and she said fine, then she hasn't actually done anything wrong, and it looks like you only want to report her in order to avoid a bad review. I don't think that will work. 

 

But you can certainly stand up for yourself and not work for free. You can tell her that she needs to increase your hours in order for you to do a good job, and if she says no, then apologise for not being a "good fit" and offer to help her transition to working with a different freelancer.

 

As for the rest of your questions: no, I wouldn't respond to bad feedback since that only draws more attention to it; yes, you should leave an accurate review for her; no, she won't be able to change her review after reading yours. And yes, clients have access to the forum, but from what I've seen, very few read comments here; they mainly only come in here to report their own bad experiences in the client thread.

 

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7 REPLIES 7
feed_my_eyes
Community Member

Unfortunately, every time you accept a new project from a client, you run the risk that they'll give you a bad review; that's just part of working here. Over time, you'll get better at vetting clients and will know not to accept a job in the first place if something seems off. But for now, there'll be a learning curve.

 

IMO, you can't really report the client at this point. If she asked to go off platform and you said that you couldn't do that and she said fine, then she hasn't actually done anything wrong, and it looks like you only want to report her in order to avoid a bad review. I don't think that will work. 

 

But you can certainly stand up for yourself and not work for free. You can tell her that she needs to increase your hours in order for you to do a good job, and if she says no, then apologise for not being a "good fit" and offer to help her transition to working with a different freelancer.

 

As for the rest of your questions: no, I wouldn't respond to bad feedback since that only draws more attention to it; yes, you should leave an accurate review for her; no, she won't be able to change her review after reading yours. And yes, clients have access to the forum, but from what I've seen, very few read comments here; they mainly only come in here to report their own bad experiences in the client thread.

 

Thanks Christine, really good point that bad reviews are a risk I have to accept and the goal is to become more discerning when accepting a job. I will negotiate for more hours for more work and delay the potentially bad review for as long as possible so I have some time to build up a positive reputation first. 

martina_plaschka
Community Member

You should be planning your exit strategy.

1. Consider ending this thing as soon as you can. It will not get better. You might tell her that you will be busy on other projects but are available for a 10 day transition period yada yada yada. 

2. If the client ends the contract, you have 14 days to leave feedback or do nothing. Find many new contracts in that time before a possible bad feedback appears. If the client does nothing, leave honest feedback before the 14 days are up and you are not able to do it any longer.

3. If the client doesn't end the contract, leave it. For months. The client might forget about you, and you can end it at some point in the future. 

4. If you get bad feedback, don't respond. 

Thank you so much Martina! Because I am so new I am going to keep trying to make this client happy to avoid the possible bad review for some time while I build up a positive reputation. If I wasn't so new I would love to cut my losses and move on...

 


Mariana E wrote:

Thank you so much Martina! Because I am so new I am going to keep trying to make this client happy to avoid the possible bad review for some time while I build up a positive reputation. If I wasn't so new I would love to cut my losses and move on...

 


You can jump through hoops and still risk bad feedback. This is a difficult client that was probably not happy you didn't comply. I don't want to spook you, but I'm willing to bet you will get not great feedback no matter what you do. I'm hoping to be proved wrong. 

gagansharma13
Community Member

Hi Marine, 

 

Were you able to deal with this situation. I've seen that you've great reviews on your profile. I'm in almost same situation. Not sure what should I do? Would be great if hear back from you.

 

Thanks

Honestly my bad experience really turned me off Upwork. One bad clients can really impact you, especially early on. I ended up graciously ending the contract and groveling for a good review from her and she gave me a publically good review but then gave me a privately bad review to Upwork which hurt my score. 

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