What is Upwork?
Upwork is one of the largest freelance marketplace platforms in the world. Founded in 2013 in California, USA, Upwork now has over 16 million freelancers on its platform (according to research made in 2018). Many freelance platforms have been founded since 2013 with their intricacies and niches, but Upwork stood its ground as one of the biggest in the market.
Why are Upwork and remote work relevant?
With remote work becoming the norm in several fields in the last decade, many qualified professionals have been looking to other streams of income that make it easier to change their lifestyles.
Going further on that, the pandemic in 2020 has accelerated the change in how companies, businesses, and professionals see remote work. Because of this, some people have transitioned from full-time employees to a freelancer, with the opportunity to travel and live in different cultures.
On the company side, small and upcoming businesses sometimes don’t have the money to hire top full-time professionals on day one, so looking to top-of-the-line freelancers may be the way to go at first.
Why should you look for an Upwork alternative: pros and cons
While Upwork can be a great platform for some companies and types of freelancers, there are certainly a few cons depending on your situation. Here, we will go over a few of them from the company’s point of view:
- A huge number of categories and users to choose from
- Straight to the point methodology (company posts the job and freelancers apply)
- Upwork handles the contract, billing, invoicing, and mediation
- The bidding war between freelancers can be time-consuming
- Hard to find the best talent possible in specific niches (like software development)
- Not the best fit if you’re looking for professionals to work on bigger and longer projects
- Most users are more inclined to graphic design
Top 5 Upwork alternatives
Now that you know what is Upwork, why it is so relevant and its pros and cons, we will present you with the top 5 Upwork alternatives we recommend for businesses!
Fiverr: for quick, clear-cut jobs
Fiverr is one of Upwork’s most popular competitors. Their platform may be the best choice for you when you’re looking for one-off and quick projects for the lowest cost possible. Another great pro of Fiverr is how easy it is to find very specific niches.
Fiverr shares some of its cons with Upwork, still: broad generalization, hard to find talent in specific niches, and no vetting to pre-validate the talent there. Still, Fiverr can be an even better alternative for smaller businesses.
99designs: for design projects
If you’re looking for design projects and highly-qualified professionals, 99designs may be the way to go. The platform is catered to businesses that need the services of designers to create logos, websites, t-shirts, illustrations, book covers and so much more.
99designs also gives you two options on how to work with freelancers: directly choosing and paying for the project or via a contest with the community.
Since it is a specialized freelance platform, 99design isn’t for everyone and every business. If you want other types of work like digital marketing, software development, legal, or HR services, you should look elsewhere.
Toptal: for one-off tech and project management projects
Another freelance marketplace specialized in a certain niche is Toptal: the company prides itself on its vetting and on having the top 3% of professionals in the tech sector (Software Developers, UX Designers, Product Designers, and Product Managers).
While the talent in the platform is great, it comes at a cost: very high fees for one-off projects. Also, hiring those top talents full-time may be the best option if you want to retain them, and that’s not possible at Toptal.
If you want to build a team just as good as via Toptal but cheaper and for the long run, you may look at GeekHunter instead: the top talent marketplace specialized in tech talent in Latin America.
Credo: for companies looking for digital marketers
Credo, a digital marketing-focused competitor to Upwork, offers more specialist support for SEO, online advertising, and social media marketing projects, but little else. Credo is intended for digital marketing services, just way 99designs performs better for design jobs.
Credo uses a personalized approach and considers the unique requirements of your business when making a freelancer recommendation. Credo ends up being a few strong figures over Fiverr’s $5, indicating that this level of attention to detail doesn’t come cheaply. Credo is better suited for serious companies with a flexible spending plan—more money for more service.
GeekHunter: to hire full-time software developers remotely
GeekHunter‘s platform offers a complete solution for recruiting and selecting online developers.
Known for delivering one of the most complete IT hunting portfolios, the platform captures professionals in the sector and presents them in a dynamic and highly qualified way to companies.
With GeekHunter, a complete and 100% online platform, you go far beyond testing for programmers and guarantee savings in time, money, and access to the best programming talent.
That is, in addition to a pre-selection and follow-up, GeekHunter assists your recruitment and selection process in a personalized way, with a team of experts who guide you on the best path to follow according to your needs.
If you want to build the ultimate remote tech team at your company, talk with our experts by filling out the form here.