January 31


My 7 Pro Tips To Hiring Remote Staff on Upwork

By Eric

January 31, 2024

By Eric Horwitz, CEO of Net Profit King

Here is part 1 for my magnum opus on how to use Upwork.com

Now let’s go deeper

Pro Tip 1: Do Outbound Invites

You can go to part of the job posting that says “Invite Freelancers” and be able to search applicants and message them to apply. It’s free, but you’re limited to 20ish invites. If you pay $29 one-time per job post, you can send an unlimited amount of outbound invites…but you can only do 70 per day (across all job postings). This allows you (or better…your remote operations manager) the opportunity to reach out to hundreds of applicants per week. I’d say we get about 40-50% of our long-term hires from this process.

You can also search by country

I.e.: “El Salvador” “Sales” or “Poland” “Operations” or whatever combination you want. Try different word searches amd combination

For operations: project manager, coordinator, operations manager, executive assistant
For sales: cold caller, sales, sales representative, appointment setter, sales manager

If you’re not getting enough applicants (which is normal if you’re new). Then you can also increase the pay, rewrite the job posting, add pictures and much more.

When looking at other applicants I suggest you:
– Look at their picture to see if it’s professional and invite
– Scan their resume for experience
– Look at their reviews from other jobs

Pro Tip 2: Screen Them With A Screen Share

Under the “screening section” tab you can ask questions. You can includes like

  • What experience do you have doing this type of work?
  • In your last company, how many months or years did you work for them? What were your responsibilities? (this helps you see how detailed they are)
  • What year is your laptop and what model is it? (this helps screen for people who have a decent laptop with good video/sound)

But this is the KEY questions that I use. And let me warn you, it will reduce your response rate because not a lot of freelancers want to take the time to complete this mini-task (even though it only takes a couple of minutes… and if they get the job they can make thousands of dollars a month!)

“Include a 1-2 minute screenshare (using something like loom.com, which is free) and include a link here. In the video, introduce yourself and share something you’re passionate about (which doesn’t have to be about work)”

This screens a lot before you spend any time interviewing such as:

  • Can they complete a task? (A lot of people will say “I can do this later” or “Once you message me I’ll do this task” but I just ignore these responses… and move on.
  • How is their English accent? Is it good enough to work with clients?
  • How is their video setup? Do they have a solid camera, lighting and audio?
  • How do they present themselves? Are they confident? Do they look semi-professional? (My staff is on zoom a good amount with clients, so I need good people)
  • How are they speaking? Do I get excited and feel their passion? Do they laugh or smile? Or are they very serious and cold?

You can learn a lot from this video.

If I like them, I give them a chance for a first interview.

But if they DON’T pass this test, then I ALWAYS message them that I appreciate their application but we’re looking for someone with more qualifications. I do this because I know it took them time, effort, and some essence of bravery to put themselves on camera and submit a quick video

Pro Tip 3: Do A Quick 15-Minute Interview That They Schedule

Next, I send them a calendly.com link for a 15-minute interview. I block off a few segments of my time for this type of stuff.

I know within a few minutes if it’s worth keeping the conversation going. In this interview I’ll ask about:

  • Their experience in the industry (sales, HR, operations, customers support, etc)
  • Their work setup at home (laptop, external monitor, etc.)
  • What they know about my company (Did they do any research or spend 5 minutes on the front page of my website?)
  • Why do they want this job?
  • Do they have any questions for me? (and they should!)

I want to see if I like them and if I could get along with them.

But most importantly…are they GWC?

This is to see if they:

Get the job: Do they truly understand the role and responsibilities?
Want the job: Is there a genuine desire from them to be in this role?
Capacity for the job: Could they actually DO the work involved based off of my initial perception of them?

If it’s a yes to all 3, they move forward. My current operations team do all of the first interviews and I make sure they are a firm “Yes” on all 3 points before they are passed on for a second interview.

Pro Tip 4: Do A Trial Task or Mock Sales Call

Next up, we have them schedule an hour-long second interview in which they will do a trial task.

If the job is in sales, we send the candidate a sales script, powerpoint and a few days to see how well they can pitch our services to us. Sometimes we have been VERY impressed, and other times, not so much.

If the job is in operations, we have them do a trial task such as finding 10 dentists within a certain radius and putting them on a spreadsheet. Then have them write an SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) on how they went through the process as if they were giving this task to someone else. Some people write a few, plain sentences and that’s it, while one time a person wrote a 2-page SOP with pictures, titles, headers and lots of detailed bullet points. You can guess which candidate we moved forward with.

Pro Tip 5: Delegate The Hiring! (to someone you hired on upwork)

I DON’T hire anyone these days. I have all of the first interviews and screens happen by my staff. It took me some time to get to this point, and it’s worth it. I’ll do a final 1-on-1 30 minute interview for those candidates that are the most promising

Like the old business mantra: “Hire slow, and fire fast”

There’s never a rush.

The cool thing is that you can delegate the hiring to your remote operations manager.

And PERMANENTLY delegate the first interview and trial task.

With my first business, LIFT Enrichment, we have a part-time Hiring Assistant whose sole purpose is to go on Upwork and screen for people, do first interviews, and hire out the team. We’re at 25 staff now and it’ll be 35 by the end of 2024.

Come up with an interview script, show people how to screen (using the tips I use) and start hiring.

Pro Tip 6: Negotiate The First 2-3 Months To Protect Your Investment

When a candidate passes the first interview, the trial task, and generally a second and deeper interview…it’s time to offer them the job. And I like to do it on the spot.

First know this: YOU are in a good position because offering someone on Upwork stable, long-term work is a real treat. It’s hard for freelancers to find a really good place to work long-term.

If the rate is $10-$15 an hour, and they are asking for $15…you can “protect your investment” by making the first 2-3 months at a slightly lower rate. This is fair because you will eventually bump it up after you make sure it works for both of you.

You could say, “How about this, I’ll hire you at $10 (or $12) an hour for the first 3 months, after that I’ll bump you up to the $15 you asked. Also I’ll guarantee a minimum of 30 (or 20 or 25) hours a week.

Note: I don’t recommend starting with 40 hours a week. Make sure they’re working well with your company before promising that number of hours.

You can even offer perks like bonuses if certain company revenue milestones are hit (I do) and you could negotiate going off paypal at some point so they don’t get hit with the 10% fees. But first work with Upwork, because there are many perks.

Pro Tip 7: Noah’s Arc “Hire 2, Not 1”

If you’re an entrepreneur, I’d always recommend two hires for each role. It’s like Noah’s Arc…everyone comes in pairs.

Hire two operations coordinators and two sales reps.

You can tell them that your goal is to KEEP both, which is true.

And even promote one to manager if it’s a good fit.

But this way you DON’T GO BACK TO ZERO, so if one doesn’t work out (and if you’re new to this, you’ll probably hire a fed duds before you find your great staff) you aren’t back to doing that job.

So hire 2, not 1.

You can afford it!

I have plenty of more upwork tips, but this post should get anyone from “I don’t have any staff” to “Wow, now I’ve got a small team and don’t work as much and make more net profit!”.

I know this can be a lot of information, but my team and I at Net Profit King are here to help.

If you’re a dental practice who would like to:
– Delegate more operations
– Have more customer support by phone
– Improve your sales so you FOLLOW up with leads
– Close more prospects
– Recruit more (and better staff)
– Free up your time
– And make an extra $100,000 in net profit

Then book a 15-minute call with my team so we can show you how we can bring our expert consulting experience so you have an amazing practice. Click here to book a call

Also we GUARANTEE you’ll make an extra $100,000 of net profit after a year of consulting with us, or we’ll work with you forever. The link is here



Eric Horwitz

Eric Horwitz

CEO And Founder

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