Showing posts with label odesk sucks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label odesk sucks. Show all posts

Sunday, March 13, 2011

oDesk Warning For Employers

Our blog for collectors rarely deals with issues that are not related to collecting and collections, but this is a special case. My apologies to collectors who may find it not interesting.

Big Warning To Employers on oDesk

The short version: after working with oDesk for 6 months and hiring dozens of contractors and getting perfect feedback from them, oDesk suddenly suspended Colnect's account which had 26 active contracts WITHOUT even providing a reason. It took 5 days and many requests to realize that oDesk did it since bonus payment to one of the contractors was passed using PayPal and not oDesk. As I was unaware of this being a "serious violation" of oDesk's rules, I offered that contractor to get her bonus via oDesk or PayPal and she chose PayPal. About 2 months later, when we ended our contract, she decided to complain on oDesk since she didn't like the feedback she got. So basically, they lost less than $5 commission from that bonus not passing through their system and decided to suspend Colnect's account although thousands of $USD were passed on oDesk and got we got only excellent feedback from contractors.

After their support failed to answer my issues properly, I contacted oDesk's CEO Gary Swart with the story. Finally, after 2.5 weeks, oDesk resumed Colnect's account. They never apologized for the damage they've done to Colnect and 26 active contractors without a good reason and they refused to change their policies or consider any compensation to the contractors they hurt or Colnect.

This is the reason this post has been made - to warn employers relying on oDesk.

Why Should You Be VERY Careful Hiring on oDesk?

  • SUSPENSION - oDesk may quickly suspend your account for any violation without consulting you thus rendering ALL your contracts inactive.

  • PRIVACY - Much hiring information is publicly available and CANNOT be hidden. For example: every contractor can see how much you paid other contractors at all times and what their job description is. So if you want to raise the hourly salary of a good contractor, you risk losing all others who do similar jobs.

  • PAY FOR NOTHING - When hiring people by the hour, it's a big problem if they report work time and have actually done nothing. The screen shots indicate they've done nothing but you're still supposed to spend much time trying to contact them and open a dispute if that fails. Many times, it's not worth your time and people get away with not doing the work they were assigned to do. Contractors may also add "offline time" without your pre-approval which means they can bill you as they like and you have to stay alert to prevent such billing from occurring.

  • SPAM APPLICATIONS - Many applications are pure spam applications from people who have never read your posted job description. Many employers thus ask for some feedback in the actual application to know they're dealing with someone who has actually read the description. oDesk doesn't seem to handle these spam reports as I've seen the same contractors applying again and again.

  • HIRED BUT NOT WORKING - Too often we've hired contractors for an hourly job and they worked just a bit and then stopped. There's no option to set minimum weekly hours but only maximum weekly hours. This is very problematic if you expect a job to be completed on a specific date.

  • HARD TO FIND CONTRACTORS - in the few times I've tried to find contractors rather than wait for them to contact me, I had great difficulties finding the right candidates as many contractors post wrong details so they'd be ranked higher in the search results. Contacting oDesk support on these issues yielded no results.

If you wish to receive more details to make this more public or if you would like to know which alternative Colnect is using, you're welcome to comment here.

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