Upwork is among the best freelance websites for clients and freelancers. It was formed after a merger between oDesk and Elance in 2015. If you are an employer and looking to hire talents, consider Upwork as your priority. There is a wide variety of skills and you can hire for almost any task. The platform connects employers and contractors from all over the world.
The following is an Upwork review.
How to Sign Up For Upwork Freelance Account
To sign up on Upwork as a freelancer, you can choose to work as an independent freelancer or for an agency. When you work for an agency, you will be getting jobs from the agency.
You can create a freelancer account and a client account. You will have the same account any time you log in but with separate profiles. However, you cannot have two separate freelancer accounts.
If you have signed up as a freelancer and you would like to hire freelancer talents, you can create a client account. Likewise, if you have a client account and you would like to work as a freelancer or agency, you can also create a freelancer account. However, you should never assign yourself a project using your own freelancer account.
Details to Provide to Sign up for Upwork Account
Signing up for the Upwork account is free. When signing up for the Upwork account, you need to provide the following details:
- Name and email
- Set a login password
- Email confirmation
- Fill in basic information
- Specialization and skills
- Experience level, whether intermediate level or expert level
- Your user profile title
- Your photo
Once you have signed up, depending on the skills you selected, you might need to take a skill test. This will be an additional to your profile that will help you get clients when you are starting.
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How Upwork Works
Upwork is a generic freelance marketplace for wide category of skills and talents. If you are an employer, you can hire contractors on a part-time or full time. If you are a freelancer, you can sell your skills and talent though Upwork. You can hire or get hired remotely.
A freelancer can create a fixed price project or an hourly price project. For a fixed price project, the freelancer and client agree on the amount payable to complete the job. For an hourly price project, payment is calculated based on hours worked. As such, the freelancer and the client will agree on an hourly budget. The client can set the maximum hours to be worked in a week to control their budget and prevent freelancers from working for many hours to earn more.
For hourly projects, Upwork has a time tracker that takes screenshots of what the freelancer is doing. The client will review the screenshots and ascertain that the freelancer was working on his project.
For fixed price projects, the client can organize the work into milestones. The freelancer will be paid every time he completes a milestone as he works on the next one.
Clients post new jobs, the skills they are looking for and the estimated budget. Freelancers send job bids stating why they are the most qualified to complete the job. Both clients and freelancers can send messages and communicate details of the project.
If you are a freelancer, you must understand that this is a competition. Other freelancers are also bidding for the same job. As such, you must send a catchy ad impressive job proposal. Submit proposals only to jobs you are sure you have the skills requested and can comfortably deliver high-quality work. State in your proposal that you will meet the client's requirements and deadline. Refrain from sending generic proposals. Instead, draft a proposal that is specific to a particular job offer. Once freelancers have sent job bid proposals, the client will review to pick the most qualified.
In the past, Upwork was offering 60 free connects every beginning of the month. However, they chaged the policy and every freelancer is expected to buy connects. Connects are like tokens which the freelancer uses to send a proposal. Different jobs have varying connect requirements, depending on the size and the budget for the job. The client can hire immediately or he can first communicate with a freelancer for project clarification. As a freelancer, it is best to keep checking if there are new messages.
The client will send the selected freelancer an offer. The freelancer must confirm the offer before the contract can start. Once you have confirmed, you are hired, and you can start working on the client's project. If the client has funded the project, the amount payable is held temporarily in Escrow. The amount is not accessible to both the client and the freelancer. When the freelancer completes and delivers high-quality work, funds are released to his account. It takes a few days before a freelancer can withdraw funds from Upwork.
When the contract is over, the freelancer or the client can close the contract. You need to give a reason before closing the contract. Both the clients and the freelancer get a chance to give feedback about their experience working together. They can also rate each other on a scale of ten and recommend each other. A review on a freelancer or client can be changed once the other party authorizes a change in a review.
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What Clients Consider when Hiring Freelancers through Upwork
There are many things that clients consider before hiring a freelancer on Upwork. First is the bid proposal. Clients select proposals that demonstrate a proper understanding of the work they have posted. As such, freelancers must send proposals that are specific to a client's job.
Clients also consider the freelancer's profile. They look at your education qualifications, skills, experience and others consider the freelancer's location. As such, make sure to have accurate details about your educational qualifications and skills.
Clients will also consider your client reviews after working with you. It would be best if you got positive reviews and recommendations from the clients you work with. On a scale of ten, clients will rate your work and experience working with you. With positive reviews, good rating and recommendation, it is easy to get clients.
Some clients will request you to send samples of jobs you have completed in the past. If the client likes the work, they will hire you. Check in the client's requirements if he needs a sample of previous jobs you have done.
It is free to sign up for an Upwork freelancer, agency, or client account. For freelancers and agencies, Upwork charges fees on the percentage of their earnings. For contracts that are below $500, a fee of 20% of earnings. For contracts between $500.01 and $10,000, 10% fees and those exceeding $10,000, a 5% fees of earnings.
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Upwork Refund Policy
You can make a refund request on Upwork from a freelancer or an agency within 180 days of payment. However, you need first to resolve any issue with your freelancer or agency before making a refund request. For hourly contracts, you can also file for a dispute on Upwork. A freelancer or agency cannot edit the billed hour or work diary after a contract has closed.
If an agency or a freelancer approves a refund, the funds are automatically credited to the client's billing method. If the client has used several billing methods, only one method will be used to credit a refund.
If an agency or freelancer refuses to approve a client's refund request, a client can file for a dispute through Upwork Dispute Center. Disputes for hourly contracts must be filed by Friday. Clients get invoices from the previous week on Mondays, and they have until Friday to review the work. If this window closes, then you have to resolve the dispute with the freelancer