6 Ways To Rock Your Upwork Experience

6 Ways To Rock Your Upwork Experience

Upwork’s Terms of Service are a driving force behind the safety and trustworthiness of the Upwork community. Understanding the language used in them—which, admittedly, can be lengthy and complex—is critical for you to know what you’re legally committing to, so you can keep your top-notch reputation.

Here are six ways you can rock your Upwork experience and avoid interruptions that can harm your business’ productivity.

1. Accept payments only through Upwork

Upwork offers payment protection for work that’s reported appropriately, with industry-leading security to protect both your personal and payment information. It also makes payments work more smoothly across borders: Clients can pay via credit card or PayPal, and freelancers can withdraw funds using the option that works best for them, including ACH direct deposit, U.S. dollar wire transfer, Payoneer, PayPal, and others.

Payments that take place outside of Upwork lose that protection, and without the built-in tools that support reporting and payment processing on Upwork, they can add to your business admin.

Plus, because you’ve agreed to “engage, communicate, invoice, and pay online” using Upwork’s platform under the terms of service–accepting payments through other channels is a violation of that agreement.

So what can you do? If a client proposes to pay outside of Upwork, decline and let us know. Clients or talent can pay a “Conversion Fee” to take the relationships off the marketplace, but you should carefully consider the impact this could have on your business before agreeing to do so.

2. Use one Upwork account

Within the Upwork platform, there are a number of features that help establish trust among new connections. These include the Job Success Score, the Rising Talent and Top Rated programs, past feedback, and ratings.

When you split your activity across multiple logins, you confuse people about who you really are and dilute the power of building a strong personal brand. Your single Upwork login includes access to any account type you may need: freelancer, client, or agency.

3. Use your own account and your own identity

Just be yourself on Upwork—including your real name and location.

You’re required to provide accurate and verifiable account and profile information. This transparency is also an important part of a marketplace that’s built on trust and your personal reputation.

To help keep your account and identity secure:

  • Respond quickly to requests to verify your identity (e.g., Participating in a phone or video verification, providing a government-issued photo ID).
  • Don’t transfer or sell account credentials to other users. For example, individual accounts may not be shared between users, and team members of an agency cannot share account or log-in credentials.
  • Don’t ever log into one of your client’s accounts on his or her behalf.

4. Make sure your profile is accurate

Information about your identity needs to be honest and up-to-date, but to be successful, your profile should go beyond that to include recognized best practices:

For expert tips, read how to make a great impression every time with your freelancer profile.

5. Share information smartly

Under the Terms of Service, you can’t list your email, Skype contact information, personal website, or a third-party profile (such as LinkedIn) in your profile.

To help protect yourself and your personal information, we also require keeping all contact with potential clients inside the Upwork platform.

For example, you can use Upwork’s messaging and videoconferencing tools or the Zoom integration with the Upwork platform for the interview process, and your Upwork profile to outline qualifications and share portfolio pieces.

6. Being successful requires more than complying with the terms of service

Running a successful freelance business means protecting the systems you use, such as Upwork, as well as your reputation. While there are rules for using the Upwork platform, much of being successful means meeting the expectation of your clients.

Here are a few extra tips to remain on the good side of both Upwork and your clients:

  • Really polish your profile. Check your profile for grammatical and spelling errors, use complete sentences, and make sure words and phrases are capitalized correctly.
  • Be responsive. Whether you receive a message from a client or from Upwork’s Support Team—including the Disputes team—always be as responsive as possible. If you’re going to be unavailable for a period of time, take advantage of Upwork’s “Out of Office” notification.
  • Do great work. When you accept a project, you promise to complete the assignment and to deliver high-quality work. Misrepresenting your skills or failing to perform work as promised can result in a low Job Success Score as well as disputes with your clients.
  • Be thoughtful in your communication. Treat everyone with respect and professional courtesy in all communications.
  • Tailor your proposals to the needs of each job and client. Don’t spam prospective clients, send the same cover letter repeatedly, or excessively message anyone.
  • Don’t pressure clients to give you feedback, and don’t withhold work until feedback is left.

Following these tips will help you establish yourself as a contributor to the Upwork community and a skilled resource for your clients.

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Author Spotlight

6 Ways To Rock Your Upwork Experience
Amy Sept
Writer & Editor

Amy Sept (@amysept) is an independent writer, editor, and content marketing strategist who’s dedicated to helping businesses of all sizes navigate the future of work. As a Canadian military spouse and slow traveller, she has a lot of hands-on experience with remote work, productivity hacks, and learning how to "go with the flow."

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