How Does Work?

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This article has been updated on January 18, 2021

Upwork is already one of the largest talent marketplaces since I knew it back in 2010. It was in oDesk when I started my freelancing career. After oDesk and Elance announced their merger, they rebranded to Upwork, from oDesking to Upworking. ūüėČ

How Does Upwork Work? Does it really help me earn an income?

These are the things to know before starting on Upwork:

  • Upwork Readiness Test
  • Verified Account
  • Types of Contracts
  • Verified Job Posting

Upwork Readiness Test

Once you are already done signing up, creating your profile is just one of the baby steps to getting into the ‘job hunter‘ status or ‘Rising Talent’ as Upwork calls it now. One of the things to know before starting is the Upwork Readiness Test. One of the basics of how Upwork works is that you need to pass this test to start sending an application to a job posting you are eyeing to work on.

Once you are all set, searching for jobs may sound complicated, but Upwork has made it as organized as possible. You can sort category by category.

Verified Accounts

Upwork wants to verify your identity for a good reason. This is one thing to know before starting on Upwork, and you must comply so clients can see that you are not just a random worker spammer.

Types of Job Posting

One thing to know before starting Upwork is the type of job posting you are applying for. How does Upwork work in terms of job posting? There are two types of contract or project you’ll find in Upwork, fixed-price and hourly projects.

A fixed price is what you and your client agreed to the price of a project. For example, $30 for checking if the 500 lists of business names s/he provided are verified on Goole Maps. The client may pay upfront or pay the whole amount after you deliver the entire list. Note that payment for fixed-price projects was not guaranteed before. But thanks to the new Fixed-Price Protection for Freelancers, contractors may not worry if they’ll get the payment or not anymore.

On the other hand, an hourly project is the safest contract you’ll ever have. Both parties, I guess. On this contract, there is something called tracking time. You can download it here. It records your work activity, from the number of keystrokes, to the number of mouse-click you made and to a snapshot of your screen every 10 minutes. Payment is secure because of the ‘Upwork Hourly Protection.’ Even before, I do prefer hourly projects.

How You Get To Choose The Right Job?

Verified Job Posting

One of the most asked questions in the online job space would be, is the job posting on Upwork legit?; which leads to one of the things to know before starting Upwork. How does Upwork work to protect both the client and the freelancer?

This is quite ambiguous to answer. You may trust your gut about it because some clients are still new and haven’t added any payment method yet. If the contract is hourly, Upwork will notify you to stop working until the client adds their card or payment method to pay their freelancer. If you are still skeptical about it, pick the job posting where the Client section has a blue check, which means payment is verified.


How Do You Get Paid on

Once you start a job, you will get your pay every week. The billing cycle resets every Monday 12:00 GMT. If you won an hourly contract, make sure to wrap up your time before that.

If you are a Top Rated Talent, one of the perks is the fast payout. A calendar example would be last week’s billing cycle, which started Monday, January 11 – January 17, 2021, at 11:50 PM GMT. The invoice or bill will now be in your In Review account fund on Monday, January 18, 2021. Because you are a Top Rated Freelancer, you can then have it Available in your account by Friday and be withdrawn any time you want. does work pretty simple. Like in a real-world job, you need to be determined and be patient to land a pretty damn good-paying job.