Should You Hire Remote Engineers From Upwork?

You’ve probably heard of Upwork if you’re looking to hire remote engineers or do some freelance work yourself. Freelancers frequently use specialized websites like Fiverr and Upwork, as well as other generalized job boards and bidding sites, to find employees and projects.

Today I’d like to focus on Upwork in this article.

Can you trust Upwork, or should you look elsewhere?

To put it simply, Upwork is a website that facilitates communication between freelancers and their clients. Companies advertise jobs they need to be done, and freelancers respond with bids. Now, let us get into all the essential details.

Toptal also connects businesses with top-tier freelance professionals, such as software developers and designers. However, there are several alternatives to Toptal that offer similar services. One such alternative is Upwork, which provides a platform for businesses to find and hire freelance professionals in various fields, including IT, design, and marketing. 

Another alternative is Fiverr, which offers a marketplace for freelancers to provide their services, such as writing, editing, and web development. A third alternative is, which allows businesses to post job listings and receive bids from freelancers interested in the project. These platforms offer companies an option to Toptal for finding high-quality freelancers to work on their projects.

Should You Trust Upwork?

There is no question that Upwork is a credible online marketplace for freelance services. But some Upworkers are scammers.

Now, do scammers exist in every institution? Unfortunately, job boards and bidding sites have made it too easy for hard-working freelancers or clients to be taken advantage of. This is just one of the reasons why I’m not a fan of such platforms. There’s nothing inherently wrong with them. They draw in so many people who are likely to exploit the platform for all the wrong reasons.

You can take some precautions by investigating the freelancer’s Upwork profile. Anyone can create a profile and be whatever they want. That’s an excellent place to begin your research; I recommend checking out their website, any social media they may have, and any reviews you can find.

To avoid unpleasant surprises, it’s essential to verify the freelancer’s background as thoroughly as possible.

Upwork Pros

  • One Of The Biggest Freelance Platforms

The Upwork website is frequently the first stop for those in need of freelancers. The platform is a top choice for many, and as a result, it draws the finest and the worst freelancers of all professions worldwide.

  • Huge Talent Pool

You can find almost any type of employee, be it a virtual assistant, engineer, developer, marketing expert, financial expert, designer, etc. Many positive comments come from platform users who have successfully assembled a complete team from the Upwork community. Because of this, Upwork is a legitimate option for users who want everything to come in one package.

  • Low Prices

Freelancers can compete for orders using Upwork bids they send to clients whose projects they’re interested in through the bidding system, as we’ve mentioned earlier. Freelancers have complete autonomy over their hourly prices, as there are no minimum or maximum limits. This same factor, however, renders it unrealistic for freelancers with advanced skills to find work on Upwork.

  • Secure Payments

All Upwork payments are held in escrow. Once you and the freelancer you’ve chosen to hire have agreed on all of the contract parameters and you’re ready to begin working together, the freelancer will request payment. However, the price will remain in escrow until the freelancer does the assignment or meets the milestone and you give the all-clear. Only then will the contractor receive their payment. If the individual you’ve hired doesn’t come through or doesn’t measure up to the standards you’ve established, you can always back out and demand a refund.

Common criticisms of Upwork 

Before choosing Upwork to hire remote engineers, there are a few things you should think about. The website is not free of complaints. So, naturally, people wonder if Upwork is a scam.

Some of the most frequent complaints from previous users are as follows:

  • Fake Profiles

This is the first thing that occurs to most people when they think about Upwork. It is, after all, an online platform. How can you tell if the people you are dealing with are legit or fake? For the site, this has been a major issue.

This is a possibility for both freelancers and their clients. Creating a fake client profile is an activity that dishonest freelancers frequently engage in. After that, they post a job, become a freelancer, get hired, become a client again, and finally, leave positive feedback on their freelance profile.

Even legitimate customers have been known to fabricate testimonials written about them by their hires. In either case, it gives an inaccurate portrayal, which is problematic when looking for reliable sources.

  • Upwork’s Cut

Upwork’s cut reduces freelancers’ earnings. If a freelancer’s first payment from a client is less than $500, 20% of that amount will go to Upwork. If a freelancer’s overall cost to a customer is less than $10,000, the percentage lowers to 10% when the number of payments increases. When their income surpasses that threshold, the cost drops to 5%.

As a result, your fee will decrease as your income grows. Keep in mind that Upwork is a for-profit enterprise. Users must evaluate the benefits and drawbacks of this approach for themselves.

  • Agreement Dissolution

Freelancers and their clients face this issue frequently in the form of “ghosting” or abrupt termination of all communication.

Clients may have conducted interviews, chosen a candidate, and given that person a job assignment. However, getting in touch with the freelancer is impossible when the deadline arrives. Although no payments were made, time and resources were significantly wasted.

Upwork, unfortunately, leaves this problem to be solved by its users.

So Should You Hire Remote Engineers From Upwork?

Finally, we can confirm that Upwork is, in fact, an actual freelance marketplace. Many people can attest that it is a legitimate way to earn money and build a professional network.

Some people use it to commit fraud, but the same can be said about every freelance marketplace. However, this does not indicate that the website in question is fraudulent. In addition, Upwork has safeguards in place to prevent fraud and keep legitimate clients safe.

Specific remote engineers have left Upwork in favor of competing platforms with a community of solely tech engineers and developers. These platforms provide top-notch, pre-vetted engineers, so there are significantly fewer chances of ending up with a fake one.

However, Upwork is worth exploring if you’re considering a career as a remote engineer or require the services of skilled remote engineers.

Are there better alternatives to Upwork?

The answer is yes. We’ve researched and compiled a comprehensive article contrasting several popular alternatives to Upwork. It would be best to explore your available possibilities before settling on a single candidate for the job.

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Steve has entrepreneurship in his DNA. Starting in the early 2000s, Steve achieved eBay Power Seller status which propelled him to become a founding partner of, a contact lens and eyewear retailer. Four years later through a successful exit from that startup, he embarked on his next journey into digital strategy for direct-to-consumer brands.

Currently, Steve is a Senior Merchant Success Manager at Shopify, where he helps brands to identify, navigate and accelerate growth online and in-store.

To maintain his competitive edge, Steve also hosts the top-rated twice-weekly podcast eCommerce Fastlane. He interviews Shopify Partners and subject matter experts who share the latest marketing strategy, tactics, platforms, and must-have apps, that assist Shopify-powered brands to improve efficiencies, profitably grow revenue and to build lifetime customer loyalty.

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