Hello all! I recently received my first message from a potential client. They have asked me for my personal email account so they could "send you over the details". I am confused as to why they would do this. I thought that connecting clients to freelancers was Upwork's main function. Why would they desire to communicate with me outside of the website? Am I just being paranoid or should I be worried? The client does have high reviews (44 reviews, 4.99 rating) and has been a member since 2012. Of course there are similar questions like mine but there are mixed responses. Just looking for a little clarity and direction here, I'm a super rookie with all of this.
Thanks for everyone's time!
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If you're already in communication/contract, there's nothing wrong with adding additional channels - whether it's for flexibility's sake or just as a backup. While using Upwork's in-house message center has advantages (easier and faster access to written proof of communication and agreements being the main one), it's also quite unintuitive, not user-friendly at all, and with the recent downtimes - not always available. I for one prefer to use off-site communication with all my clients, except the ones that insist on using the Message Center - my email certainly has less downtime than UW. As long as you keep the payments here, and adhere to the ToS of the site, the communication can happen anywhere you want it to.
@Mark G wrote:
Thank you, I will keep that in mind. However there is no current contract, this was the first message I'd received about the job I bid on.
With all the outtages and down-time the site has been having, and will propably continue to have, an alternate way of communicating with clients is a must - it has saved my you know what on numerous deadline occasions.
As long as the job and the payments stay on Upwork, there's nothing wrong with it.
Hi Mark, I can only give you my experience. I think some clients see Upwork as a great way to connect and pay the freelancer, but beyond that like to take it off the site, exchange emails, phone numbers etc. In my experience this hasn't been a problem. I have my email address on my personal business card that i give out to people pretty freely and figure its about the same. If never delete any work emails though. If i felt funny about a client I wouldn't. This client seems to have a good track record. Some clients might feel the Upwork site can be glitchy, or they just prefer to do business with you the same way they are doing it with other people they work with. I guess its a case by case thing, but I have never had a bad expereince doing that. just my thoughts, ~best
44 reviews, 4.99 rating?
I would not worry about providing my email address to this client.
If the client was new/had no Upwork history? I definitely would not provide my email address to a prospective client like that.
But if a client hires me with an hourly contract and wants my email address, I definitely provide it to him. If the client emails me any questions or communicates wtih me via email, I log all the time I spend communicating with him.