Upwork — Don’t Waste Our Time, and Don’t Steal our Data

Was I cheated by an application to “Upwork”?

This account is a question, and a word to the wise, for the attention of Upwork, any prospective contractors, and any client companies thinking of signing up to it.

A few days ago, I spent the best part of six hours; most of a night, until well into the next day, meticulously entering all of the details of my employment history, interests, selecting categories, tagging, etc, etc.

It takes a long time to enter all of that data chronicling over twenty years of work, carried out at a senior level on all manner of Complex Software Driven Systems for all manner of blue chip companies, including even my academic credentials stretching back to nearly thirty years ago, and an up to the minute photo of myself.

As a professional, I grudged every minute of it. But as a very determined, highly motivated individual, I gritted my teeth and ground through it.

Why not just enable me to upload my CV, already carefully compiled over twenty years, and be done with it?

Also, why did everything need to be categorised, nothing seeming to fit exactly, with me having to create many new categories for them?

The whole process seemed to indicate a complete lack of freelance recruiting agent experience on the part of Upwork.

Then the response, a day or two later:

“Dear Frederick,

Thank you for your interest in Joining Upwork. We have reviewed your application to join, and regret to inform you that we are unable to accept your Upwork freelancer registration at this time”.

Continuing with:

“Please do not consider this a reflection of your abilities — while we would like to offer every qualified freelancer a spot, admission is highly competitive as Upwork receives more than 10,000 freelancer registrations daily. To help ensure that the freelancers we accept have the best chance at finding opportunities on our platform, we can only accept a small percentage of those who want to join”.

The last sentence more or less states that they consider themselves already full. And yet the sentence before that claims admission is competitive.

Which is correct? My guess is neither.

Am I a little arrogant assuming my qualifications of BEng, MSc, CEng, ongoing part time PhD, with twenty years experience across a wide range of multi-billion projects, often leading as a freelancer is about as good as it gets?

Maybe, but I make no apologies.

Something really does not smell right about an agency claiming to be dealing with freelance work, refusing credentials like mine. As an already successful long term freelancer I already know my skills are highly desirable, and highly valuable. I have worked very hard to make them just that.

“10,000 freelancer registrations”, every day including many personal details of skills, interests, phone numbers, email addresses, former employers, personal references, and even a photograph sounds like an awful lot of very valuable data.

Facebook, eat your heart out.

I trust, and demand that all of my data submitted via my Upwork application is deleted immediately.

I do not expect to be able to continue logging into my Upwork “Account”.


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