Hope this finds you well. There have been numerous changes on the way since my last update to you which I’d like to talk about here:
1.Fresh New Design Coming Up
I’m delighted to see how engaged the community have been in our recent post on the new design of the site coming up. By and large the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive which is refreshing to hear.
For those of you who haven’t seen it or had a chance to have their voice heard, we’d love to hear from you. The thread is alive and kicking here.
A few have commented ‘why the change’? Whilst there is nothing broken with the existing design and UI, it has been the same for almost two years now. In a world that moves as frighteningly fast as it does,
we feel that constant change (even though painful to some) is needed to stay in the game. We hope you will find the experience better and thank you once again for your feedback
2. Introducing Curation – PPH just became exclusive!
PPH has always been known for its focus on the quality of the community over anything else. Following on from the introduction of CERT 6 months ago, we decided to take this to the next level by introducing another quality filter.
From now on, new freelancers cannot just sign up: they need to ‘apply’ to join the community. Each applicant is screened manually and quality checked for authenticity, relevance to their skills, quality of uploaded assets like a resume, portfolio and recent video application.
That’s a lot more work for team PPH to do, and with time we hope to be able to scale it by involving the community in the curation process. However for now we’d rather do more work, and have a smaller community, in order to aim for higher quality. We don’t strive to be the biggest. We want to be the best
3. Richer Profiles: more skills, profile videos + more
For those who are already in the marketplace, this is also a chance to update your profile, including a video in your profile which is worth 1000 images and hence a million words! Nothing beats uploading a video and telling the world what you can do, why you are different, why customers should pick you over others who may place a similar proposal on a job. So don’t miss out on making yourself stand out!
Here are some examples of latest videos uploaded >>. You can visit your profile to upload a video!
4. Introduction of Video Bids
Taking the above to the next level, we have just launched video bids which allows you to personalize a proposal considerably. Placing a video bid is FREE, takes a few minutes and gets you much more real estate in the Buyers proposal view. Here’s a sneak peak. Plus you get a ‘featured proposal’ (normally with £9.95 thrown into the mix on the house)
How can you upload a video proposal? It’s dead simple. In the proposal form you can either record a video on the page or choose to get an SMS sent to your phone and record it on your Smartphone. This then auto syncs with the page and appears in the Buyers proposal view.
5. More ‘Intelligent’ Job Recommendations
As part of the curation project, and given how much more information we now gather by each applicant, we take a much more active role in quickly recommending highly relevant jobs that match your skills with some deeper use of data science.
Why do we do this? As we grow we feel that finding your way through the increasing volume of listings can be tough and tiring. So we use algorithmic intelligence to match highly relevant jobs based on tags you place in your profile and information we gather from Jobs, and give you a chance to get a first call on placing a proposal.
We are aware that limiting the bidding to only those recommendations for the first 3 hours has led to some discontent and frustration in the community. We have listened and removed that restriction. The idea behind that was to ensure that those with highly relevant skills are given a first shot at the job that’s relevant to them
Update your profile to get relevant jobs matched to you!
6. A Marketplace where Everyone Wins and Keeps Moving Up
In line with the move to becoming more exclusive as mentioned above, we are introducing a scheme whereby freelancers who are inactive for six months will have their accounts paused.
Why are we doing this? After all what harm is there in leaving a profile dormant on the site?
We happen to believe that this does do harm to the community and dilutes the perception of quality to those who remain active. There are too many sites out there which are gradually turning into digital graveyards, which makes the discovery process for customers tougher.
On the flip side of that argument: we will ensure that Sellers are sent a minimum number of relevant jobs to bid on thereby ensuring that they had a fair chance to win. And for those that don’t manage to break in and feel they deserve a second chance, we will be introducing an ‘extension period’ for a small fee. Again, this is to separate out those who are serious about freelancing from those who are not.
Our goal is to have a community of winners who keep moving up the ranks, winning more work and at better quality. And if that means having less of them, then so be it.
As always we’d love to hear your feedback on any of the above. And you can reach me personally on firstname.lastname@example.org