Upcoming changes to CERT

   

Hello PPH,

I hope you are all well. Today I wanted to share some changes on CERT levels that we are considering.

CERT levels (1,2,3,4,5,10) summarise various quality metrics for Sellers like earnings, feedback, response time, refunds etc. Overall it works nicely as it encapsulates in a single number the level of the Seller on PeoplePerHour. The only element that CERT does not reflect is how well the Seller is doing on PPH at the moment. For example Sellers that used to be among our top ones 1 or 2 years ago may have a very high CERT now even if they have stopped selling on PPH a long time ago. To make sure that Buyers employ Sellers that are active on the platform, we are considering to apply the criteria of CERT for all work done by Sellers during the last 6 months and not use all time data. This will give Buyers a more updated view of Sellers’ activity.

Therefore if in the last 6 months a Seller does not do any billing on PeoplePerHour they will have to prove they can win work on PeoplePerHour by qualifying again in 3 months period like our new Sellers have to do.

At the same time we will make another important change: we will adjust CERT’s criteria so that more Sellers are in top CERT levels compared to today’s stats. This is because our Sellers provide more and more top quality so we think that more of you deserve high CERT levels.

Looking forward to having your thoughts in the comment box below.

Best regards,
Christos
Product Manager @PPH

129 Comments

  • Peter Mahoney

    Sounds reasonable!

    It makes sense to use more recent data for a user’s rating than “all time”.

  • Islene

    Sometimes I think this is unfair and sure, you should review ur criteria of CERT because I never saw changes in my CERT. I was endorsed, I received good references and nothing changes.

  • VASKAR

    Thank you so much, I really like this idea.

  • Faryad

    Good. There was a big gap between CERT5 and Top 10. Definitly more than 10 people are in higher levels.

    Another major problem is CERT drops very fast and for no reason. For example if a seller be busy with projects for a week, CERT starts degrading extremely fast and for no reason! I’ve once encountered this while I was busy with some simultaneous projects and I didn’t have time to bid more. And sometimes may a seller be in travel, trouble or some other emergency cases. It shouldn’t be dropped so fast. It takes ages to raise it again.

  • Milos

    Nice. Maybe add a couple more levels?

  • soniya

    Good Idea

  • Joe

    I don’t understand the logic at ALL, the cert someone achieves is an indicator of the QUALITY of services/work provided by the person in question. Whether THEY DECIDED TO LOGIN OR NOT and do business in the last six months is ridiculous to say the least. The freelancer HAS NOT become LESS of a freelancer and less qualified because they’ve been too busy to use PPH, what happens when a person has to go into hospital? A long term medical condition that does not allow them to freelance for the time being? When they come back they start from scratch? They’ve lost a key indicator of their quality of work simply because they they we’re UNAVAILABLE? It’s like you’ve not even thought this through.

    CERT should be a level of QUALITY NOT AVAILABILITY. I mean, simply not taking any jobs on by CHOICE, whether i’m active or not still makes the CERT gradually drop.

    Exasperated.

  • Steve NC

    Yes, PPH needs better tracking of recent Seller activity/success – very useful.

  • Marie

    It’s a good idea though I am concerned that when there are not suitable jobs to bid for I will loose my rating. I only bid for jobs that relate to what I specialise in. Sometimes there are many jobs like that other times there are not.
    Can you take that into consideration? I always check in regularly and send proposals where suitable.

  • Chris

    Sounds like a stupid idea to me! If you think about it its not entirely fair, say someone is selling well and they need to pause their hourlie for 4 weeks or so while they focus on the work they already have they then get penalised for not selling during that time because they may already be at capacity not because they aren’t active!

    This is obviously again aimed at the new sellers and the ones who sell very cheap hourlies why do you keep targeting them? this isn’t Fivver!! Also someone selling an hourlie at £1 is going to get more sales than someone selling at £100 which would mean the person selling something at lower quality gets a better CERT than the higher quality ones.

    Also why do they deserve to have a higher CERT? if thats was they case then they would already have a higher CERT!

    Why do you insist on changing things that don’t need changing?

  • Bhuwan Roka

    Awesome scheme! Thank you PPH Team. Looking forward such type of changes.

    Cheers
    Bhuwan
    WordPress Designer / Developer from Top of the World, Nepal

  • Christos

    Hello Chris the most important factor of CERT is earnings so it does not matter if you don’t do many more sales if you bill enough in existing workstreams (amount is the metric we consider in this case not number of invoices). Trending sorting in Hourlies is something independent from CERT. CERT is mostly about earnings and some other quality metrics. CERT criteria will not change as I said , we will just take into account more recent data.

    Best
    Christos
    Product Manager @PPH

  • Christos

    thank you all for your feedback this is really useful for us.

    Best
    Christos
    Product Manager @PPH

  • Alexander

    Hello Christos,

    Thanks for update. However – if the most important factor of CERT is earnings as you said, could you please explain me how a person with 0 earnings and feedback can have 4 CERT level? I’ve seen as minimum as two such profiles.

    Thank you 🙂

  • Jan White

    Hi Christos,

    Thanks for this is, it’ s great that changes are being made to the CERT System. I always welcome improvements.

    Will the amount of Endorsements a PPHer has on their Profile have any effect on the Revised-CERT levels please?

    Also I read the other day that advised Vacations, with no new business for the period agreed as ‘Vacation’, would not affect the PPHers CERT Level.

    I took an advised Vacation earlier this year and my CERT dropped from 5 to 4 and to date I have still not be able to regain my CERT5 Level, despite working harder than ever and submitting more and more bids. Will the Revised-CERT take advised Vacations in to account please?

    Thanks Jan

  • Warren

    I love the Cert feature, and it certainly does help win work. The only thing that really annoys me is when it drops with feedback.

    From experience I know some people never give 5 stars – it’s almost like they are scared. I have had reviews in the past that are 4 stars with feedback along the lines of “perfect service, recomended .. will used again”. Which is fine, because 4 stars according to PPH is still a good service. So why does my cert rank drop from #79 to #280 odd? It seems like a steep drop considering the review is still positive rather than negative!

    I also agree that a few more cert levels would be great, it seems almost impossible to get into the top 10!

    Warren

  • Abhimanue

    Awesome thing for new sellers as well as for old sellers. Seems to be a win win situation for everyone.

  • Allison Mccafferty

    Hi Christos

    Whilst I understand this and value you looking at the Cert system this does concern me somewhat. I am active on the site but due to other clients outwith peopleperhour sometimes I am more active than others. I have been on the site since 2008 and I do feel that my historical feedback and capability is hugely important in determining my CERT level, not just my standing over the last 6 months. From my point of view people want quality and someone who has a long record of capability and delivery through the site is surely attractive. The nature of my work means that not every job is a reoccuring one so am I constantly either going to have to win new work (not always possible as I have my own roster of clients) or only look for repeat work rather than doing quality work on one off project in order to keep my CERT high? Doesn’t seem completely fair and again seems to be designed to push new sellers rather than actually looking after and retaining some of the longer term people like me who have paid the most commission over the years.

    Happy to hear your thoughts?

    Allison

  • Chris

    Hello Christos, you will of course find the everyone saying this is a “good idea” are those with lower CERT’s so this is aimed at them, what about the ones that have earned a high CERT already? Why do higher CERTS and established sellers keep having to take hits for newer sellers and less established ones? Its like all our hard work over the years will just count for nothing now because it wasn’t done in the last 6 months!! Sorry but that just isn’t fair!! you can’t just keep alienating your established sellers.

    I know why not do something for your established sellers for a change?

  • Jan White

    OOO just had an idea that would make it worth working for CERT5.

    Maybe when someone gets CERT5 or above, PPH could drop one of the Fees charged. Either the initial 12% COMMISSION fee or the additional 1.9% WITHDRAW fee.

  • Julian

    It’s the CERT affected by endorsement and favorites?
    Because these metrics will be wrong as there is a tendency to endorse to be endorsed.
    I’m a lvl. 5 CERT, I have 8 REAL endorsements and 27 projects completed.
    How is that lvl. 1 CERTs with less than 2 projects completed have 200 endorsements and 400 favorites?
    Also as we are all freelancers; we don’t work in the same line of work. So we are competing with SEO, PPH, PHP, etc, etc, and of course we (3d designers) are going to came last. They have more work.
    Other things that you have to consider are refunds. I personally have 100% rating. I never let down a client, I always reach the deadlines. But that doesn’t mean that a client can’t change their mind and cancel a job even before it started or couldn’t get the rest of the money to pay what it’s not in the deposit.
    Thank you!

  • Ethar

    Well, truth is I’m not that enamoured with the platform as it is, even wit the nicer interface. I get my work through many channels and other channels offer more frequent, lucrative work. So the upside of the Cert changes for PPH are that this necessitates that people regularly use the PPH platform for more and more of their work, otherwise they lose the cert every 6 months. With other, more trusted platforms not having this restriction, it’s not worth continuing with PPH if the relative proportion of the work through PPH is infrequent and of limited revenue, especially with the charges for that tiny volume being double what they are elsewhere for the same volume of work some will see.

    The irony is that Cert wasn’t really (and dare I say still isn’t) about quality of work. When it was introduced, lots of folk who used to have 100% ratings found themselves on cert 1 or 2 and those good people left as a result.

    For me, PPH isn’t a useful platform for business. I rarely need to purchase, given I have better channels to get folk and the platform isn’t very useful for obtaining work of the type that I actually do. So what I do get from here is incredibly easy to do but there isn’t the volume to make it worthwhile. I am not one of those people who believes you can pay cheap and get top dollar work and whilst there are folk on here who are top draw, the Cert system far from tells me who they are.

    Cert is based mainly on the contribution to the community, which make no mistake, it useful, but when it comes to someone outside that community needing something, it isn’t the community that matters to them, it’s the quality of the work. Hence, Cert benefits middle-people more than anyone as long as the middle person can get he work, appoint someone else on here to do the work and take a margin, they get a double or triple benefit on their Cert score.

    As I see it, the new changes to an already useless Cert measure are yet again to try to boost the use of the PPH community more than grow it with those outside it or with other channels to which PPH only provides insignificant incremental value add.

  • A S.

    How does the new system prevent freelancers being penalised for going on holiday?

    I take 6 weeks off during the summer and have a total break from freelancing…does that mean I lose my CERT5 and I’m somehow not such a great freelancer anymore?

    Surely the CERT rankings are to help buyers select the best freelancers…not to highlight the PPHers who churn clients as quickly as possible and never go on holiday?

  • Benson M.

    It’s about time! I somehow thought it was a part of the considered metrics.

  • Fahad

    Yes thats sound awsome to get the most recent statistics based cert

  • Cyj Andrew

    Hi Christos

    Thanks for the heads up.

    CERT changes could be interesting for everyone (both buyers and sellers), depending on how PPH eventually chooses to deploy it.

    Obviously there are risks:

    1. High volume of sales or activity on the PPH platform does not necessarily equals higher quality

    2. It may not always be possible to be active on PPH all the time

    These are all things that I’m sure the PPH team would have considered thoroughly.

    Having said that, I can see how CERT changes could help the community; e.g. buyers would be able to choose from more recently active sellers, etc.

    Automatically upgrading lower CERT holders as you mentioned may “water down” the value of the levels. Why not leave things as they are, introduce the new CERT changes, and let everyone level up as best they can.

    One other thing to perhaps consider is something Joe mentioned in the comments:

    Say a freelancer has to take some time off active bidding and billing on PPH, does that make them less skilled, or less qualified?

    Going by the new CERT rules, it does and it will affect their ability to earn, which could in turn potentially keep highly skilled service providers from getting buyers, limit their earnings and eventually encourage them to just leave PPH.

    Also do these new changes mean that CERT will fluctuate over time, depending on the seller’s activity on the platform?

    If it does, it could discourage some high quality sellers from bothering at all to constantly level up (as it were).

    In my simple opinion, CERT serves many purposes on the PPH platform, one of which is gamification. As tends to happen with a difficult video game, over time, the game gets left behind (because its too hard to play), and one moves on.

    I feel that CERT has to have added value and incentive for sellers, rather than being a constant cause of concern (fear or pressure of billing, in order not to lose a high CERT level and all that).

    Also, consider a situation where a seller has like 102 completed projects, worked with 87+ buyers; but they have a CERT level of 2, because they lost their initial higher CERT.

    I’m not sure what that says about the validity of the CERT rating system.

    Would it be a case of no longer showing the number of completed projects, or buyers worked with; and displaying just the CERT rating?

    That could be an alternative (but I could be spouting nonsense, I don’t know).

    I doubt that any comments here will affect PPH’s decision to take these changes forward or not, so the best we can do (as buyers or sellers), is to wait and see how it affects us in the New Year.

    Not to sound negative or anything, because this could potentially be a very good change for PPH, but it does sound a bit like:

    “Make money for us, or else!”

    Thanks

  • Filippos Karailanidis

    This change will benefit new & active freelancers but it will drive out those who used to be dedicated in the platform and had to stop because of their reasons. Or maybe they have a longer project cycle.

    Why not display both?
    Show the buyer that this freelancer used to be awesome (even reached CERT 5) but has been inactive for X months.

    I believe this would be a much more objective ranking system, doing justice to everyone.

  • StephenB

    It’s not just CERT that needs this time based issues looking at. The ‘response time’ can be skewed by a single message that slips through the net and doesn’t get actioned. So a nominal ‘within hours’ can result in ‘within days’ which is detrimental

  • Cyj Andrew

    PPS: An alternative would be to make CERT a composite rating based on earning ability etc., combined with a qualification test.

    Would that not give it more credibility?

    Thanks

  • Garry Wood

    Hi Christos
    This is terrible and non reflective of quality provision.
    I have been on pph since very early doors and still regularly bid, the CERT seems to not take in to account my historical relationship with PPH. I, as I am sure many people on here rely on the good endorsements and historical factors that I have built here for my livelihood. I have watched my CERT drop with no explanation recently and believe it is affecting purchasers commissioning choices. I can only see this development exasperating this, which is incredibly worrying and very serious to me. People per hour is not Facebook it is a job to many and whilst trying to drive your business you must take into account your longstanding loyal customers.

  • Jahanara Bhuiya

    Yes,very useful.

  • Mitchel

    Ridiculous Idea. Punishing long standing sellers who have been with the site from the start in favour of cheap hourlies looking to make a quick few pounds in a short space of time.

  • Kyle Kilgore

    I think this is a good idea for basing CERT’s on recent activity. However, I think that it should be for the last 12 months instead of the previous 6 months.

    I know the overall purpose is to make sure that we sellers are are generating revenue without charge backs and keeping customers happy but I think the time frame that you are judging us on is set too short.

  • Ranker

    I like Faryad and Jan White’s thoughts on this. We didn’t buy our way (those of us cert4 and up), we earned it by:

    1 – Providing a quality service that PPH banks on.
    2 – Providing great customer service to our clients.

    The badge should be based on quality and communication.

    If a user is not active (maybe because they went to another platform) in 6 months – suspend the account.

    if the user is not active in 1yr – terminate the account.

    Think about this.

    a person works, saves their money and buys a car to go back and forth to work.

    When they retire they don’t drive as much, so i guess i should take their car from them.

    Get my drift. We earned this.

  • mohamed

    hello
    I think there should be full review of the CERT techniques
    I have done many many tasks , and I’m still on level 4 while may be less work people got more rank than me

    and many of the refunded I got was because of cancellation from the client himself
    and when I dispute the persons who want to change the requirement to make it for free to him , my CERT decreased more

    that force me to do some additional tasks for free for the client not to make dispute not to loose CERT

    and also some time I don’t got paid because the client not approved his payment papers although he approved my work

    that make me not working may be about one month with my usual quality as I afraid I not got paid

    so please , take care about the freelancer here as when they are happy ,sure the client will be happy

    so please refine the CERT criteria as I think I got afraid that I’m going to loose both money and CERT too

  • mohamed

    also it is very bad that the CERT isnt updatable manually
    as I got problem before and the help support team wasn’t able to fix the CERT when the clients asked for refund as they don’t know what is the express feature there ?
    so it should be away to manually fix the CERT as well please

  • Linda

    The basic idea is motivating to the new entries in PPH especially if the intensity of the work and amount of the incomes are being taken into account as well, which is great. However, even though 6 months is a considerable time span, for different reasons someone cannot be that active as before and cutting his/her CERT off probably isn’t that fair. This because the Seller would lose the credibility that took a lot of energy to be gained. I would adding a historical track of the Seller’s performance over time, so if someone is CERT1 for this reason the potential Buyer can still see that this Seller did great in a period of time and can trust him. Personally if I saw someone that is part of PPH for a long time and is still CERT1, I would trust more someone who has recently joined and has the same CERT. So this would penalize the Seller that has been loyal and hard working for a period of time, but for personal motives could not be that active for the last months. A historical track, in my opinion, would fill the gap on this change.

    Keep up the good work guys!

    Best regards,
    Linda.

  • Shakir

    I am confused about CERT. let me explain. I’ve seen a person has 2 reviews (60%), buyer worked with 2, project completed 2 but he got 4 CERT. Another person who got CERT 5 with only 8 reviews and 9 projects. Now tell me is it fair?

    It didn’t make sense to me. At last I discovered that it’s all about a lot of endorsements. If hundreds of endorsements cause to get top CERT instead of quality, ranking or review, feedback, number of projects, earnings and relationship with buyer, is it fair?

    Second thing is CERT should be a level of QUALITY NOT AVAILABILITY and ENDORSEMENTS.

    Thanks

  • Dawn Benson

    I bid on very few jobs on PPH because of the lack of good quality jobs therefore I do not bill through PPH very often. I do not seen why this situation should affect my CERT score.

    This constant interference from PPH I find very annoying. The only people who know a freelancers’ work are freelancers’ clients and therefore PPH are not really in a position to judge freelancers’ skills.
    The CERT system is just a way to drive business towards PPH not an accurate measure of the skills of a freelancer.

  • Simon Hainsworth

    I think the whole cert thing is a complete annoyance and a very badly thought out idea.

    It seems to me the only way to raise your cert level is to make PPH more money.

    I got a “Cert” from University in Maths, but didn’t get it taken away when I went into graphics!!!

  • Liam Beale

    The timing on this could not be better as im about to write a review of PPH based on my past years experience with the website and how it appears to be changing.
    If im completely honest, i used to love PPH but Im not liking the avenue you guys are taking and wonder if there is other factors and motives involved in how they are ranking hourlies, I genuinely believe it is (or at least was) the best freelance platform and i used to get plenty of work just for being a cert 5 and even more when i featured my hourlies, but in the last few weeks something has changed, now featuring my hourlies just seems like a waste of money as i barely get a single enquiry to the point im starting to look elsewhere which i really dont want to 🙁
    I understand you want to make the site fair and give others a chance but for people like me who are a CERT5, it took a lot of hard work to get to this stage having to bend over backwards for some people so as not to dirty my rankings. Dont make the mistakes some companies do by focusing your attention on the new customers, think about your loyal customers.
    My suggestion would be to keep the CERT system the same and maybe have a recent activity meter on their profile page, for a lot of freelancers this is their livelihood and punishing people for not using the site in 6 months seems a little harsh to me, issue them warnings, place a banner on an account stating their low activity or something instead maybe ?

  • Anna P

    Stop fiddling with stuff that doesn’t really need fixing and try concentrating on the outstanding issues that badly require rectifying for a change! PPH seems very good at introducing new touches but fail at actually improving the service.

  • Mal

    It was good before the certs, and the initial changes had great detrimental effects on good sellers / buyers alike overnight, this why people stopped selling on here, along with getting fleeced 3 times for 1 transaction from PPH then having to wait for money to be released.

    I have spoke to numerous users outside of PPH, who used to be active on here, like myself the reasons why they aren’t active or s active , 90% of the reasons were the introduction of CERTS and paying for extra’s which should gain you more work, but in fact it does the polar opposite, but it makes more money for PPH, I would hazard a guess you will see more and more sellers that have seen the changes unfold over the last few years jump ship a little quicker than they have done.

    I used to be active on here but as you keep changing the goal posts and the CERTS don’t really reflect anything I guess I shall be closing my account soon as well.

  • Chris

    I’m on board with this in many respects and agree with the principle behind it, but would like to back up what somebody else said about cert levels plummeting fairly quickly.

    Over the last two weeks I’ve seen my own level drop from teetering on the boarder of Cert 5 to, at best, a mid-level 4, and this is whilst I’ve been actively working with clients through PPH on a daily basis.

    No, I haven’t been billing as much as I normally do, but I’m progressing with longer-term projects and meeting deadlines set by clients.

    If I didn’t have enough going on, it would almost seem as if the best solution is to start bidding on lots of little, low-paying jobs to just to increase the rate that I dish out invoices.

    That said, I’ll continue to do my best for my clients through PPH as I do value this platform as a way to provide freelance services.

  • Palaceonweb

    A seller didn’t got a project from a long time doesn’t mean now he is not capable of doing the task. Sell of the hourlies depends on the demand. Few months ago i got frequent project and my ranking gone up and in a month or two when i didn’t got a project my ratings fallen down. It doesn’t mean not i am less active it means the buyers are less active in PPH, bcoz i am ready to get the project done.

  • Mike

    Like others have mentioned, what happens if you take time off? You don’t suddenly become useless at what you do. CERT ranking goes down way to fast as well, for how slow it takes to get it higher, seems very unbalanced.

  • Ben

    I have reservations about this idea along the lines of what has already been mentioned.

    A seller’s service quality doesn’t change just because they have decided to take a break, have other commitments, have work from other sources, are off sick etc. CERT should solely be a measure of a seller’s quality and prospective buyers shouldn’t be put off a long standing member just because that person has been away for a while.

    Whilst I understand the sentiment behind having a single score metric, I think it’s just too simplistic. Why not provide independent metrics to indicate service quality and participation levels? Or perhaps an overall rating as well as a rating for the last year?

    I think otherwise, there needs to be a provision for sellers to be able to put their profile into suspension where CERT is fixed but no activity can take place when they know they’re going to be away and for customer services to be able to do this retroactively for those who have had an unexpected absence.

  • Graham

    The cynic in me thinks this is just another attempt by PPH to get freelancers to bring offline clients onto the platform, as I believe this also increases the CERT ranking. Many genuine freelancers are very selective in what they bid for, due to the influx of unrealistic budgets and ‘weekenders’ prepared to churn out poor work for £6 an hour. Consequently, if nothing viable comes up on the site, selective freelancers will be penalised.

    The CERT system is flaky anyway – I’ve seen many users with a high CERT rating generated from nothing but 101 mickey-mouse endorsements.

  • Steven

    Hi PPH,

    I have been a long term seller on this site. I can say that I am not very impressed with the idea behind these changes to the Cert System.

    The Cert System represents a sellers reputation on the site. It is clearly not fair for someone to loose the reputation that they have built up over the years because they haven’t traded via the site for a while.

    Is it not enough to just indicate a users activity levels.

    Most of the jobs that come through people per hour have very low rates. I would imagine that most of the higher rate freelancers use a number of sites to find Jobs that allow them to maintain a reasonable living. If you then go on to penalize this type of usage i think it will only serve to devalue this site.

    One of the things I have loved about PPH is the reputation that I have built up. I used this site many times when I have required references. This is a benefit to the site as it adds value and encourages word of mouth promotion.

    If I go away on another job to see me reputation destroyed after not billing via this site for three months or so, I cannot say there will be much motivating me to bid on PPH, over say, the other dozen or so freelancing sites out there, of which I will be in the same boat.

  • Xperteria - Web Design Agency

    CERT system is just awful!
    its really not helping the established freelancers.
    Please make it work in a way that it should rank top the freelancers who have earned more and have more experience.

  • Benjamin

    God I miss the days of being able to just pay to be a premium member.. .lol even though I have never not been CERT5 … I just dunno if it’s the best method for everyone. Maybe I’m just feeling nostalgic today… hahaha

  • Jen

    I think this is an awful idea. I experience highly erratic visibility for my services on this site. I’ve watched and monitored the number of page views of my hourlies get over time, and I can only assume that for no apparent reason, PPH sometimes promotes me and sometimes doesn’t.

    I’ve also had almost identical problems that Mohamed has experienced (above) with the Cert system, so I think it’s rubbish anyway.

    You’re taking all the fun out of using this site and making it tedious as hell for many established users.

    Can’t you at the very least fix the existing bugs first before messing about with it again?

  • Sotiris

    When will these changes start taking place?

  • Barry

    It makes sense to use up to date data. But if the person steps away for 3 months they shouldnt have to requalify as they have proven themselves. This seems like a poor tactic in order to drive more revenue for PPH – by getting freelancers to keep working without a gap. What other purpose does that serve?

  • Rosalyn

    The introduction of the Certs system has certainly made it hard for those on the lower levels to gain work. Most buyers will favour somebody on a Cert 4 or 5 level over somebody on a lower level. But those on a lower level may be just as well qualified to work on a project. I get the impression that a lot of buyers don’t even look at bidders with Cert 2 or below. Now those of us on a lower Cert level are to be penalised for not having had a successful bid in 6 months.

    Please look at how many bids we’ve made in 6 months, not how many jobs we’ve done when considering how active we are on PPH.

  • Frank Evans

    IT’S UNFAIR & RUBBISH! This is all being done to keep freelancers working for PPH – full time and for rubbish fees. A lot of the jobs on this site and other freelance sites pay rubbish fees. Don’t we all know it.

    If I were a client, I would look at the freelancer’s STAR RATINGS and the nature of the jobs done e.g. 5 star rating for a £1,000 job. That would say everything to me about the freelancer.

    Who cares if you haven’t worked for six months? No one! You don’t believe it? Okay! I have had ONLY FOUR CLIENTS; I AM CERT 4, and I have earned over £3,260 since the 22 March 2012.

    LAST YEAR I ONLY DID ONE JOB (FOR £15) – BUT THIS DIDN’T STOP ME BEING HIRED BY TWO HIGH PAYING CLIENTS IN 2014.

    Yes, there’s been some luck in getting three high paying clients (only one low paid job: £15 hourly) – but in general, they HIRED ME BECAUSE OF MY 5 STAR RATINGS & MY PROFILE – NOT BECAUSE I HAVE BEEN FULLY ACTIVE ON PPH.

    CERT SHOULD BE BASED ON CLIENT STAR RATINGS AND NOTHING ELSE.

    PPH is a great freelance site, but if it continues in this way, it will really begin to annoy freelancers. Scrap all this crap and just give credit to where credit is due – star recommendations.

  • Hanna

    I think it’s a terrible idea. The reason why I’m far less active on PPH now than I used to be is because the jobs offered are not as numerous and interesting as they used to be. When someone wants a full website translated and gives a £30 budget, I don’t even bother to bid.

    Yet, my CERT5 allows me to be regularly contacted by people who recognise my status as an expert in my field and are ready to pay the price for it.

    I find it very unfair that you should punish people who have been with PPH for years and have built their reputation step by step, in profit of new, inexperienced and cheap translators, who provide translations straight from Google Translate.

    Instead of making changes to the CERT, you should try and attract more good buyers.

  • Charly

    I think this is a stupid idea! You are basically penalising people for not being on here 24 / 7! Just because I have work outside of PPH doesn’t mean I do a bad job!

  • Blessing

    You guys should make it 12 months not 6 months

  • Chris

    I think Liam Beale has just solved the problem and it benefits the whole community without damaging our CERT rankings that we have work hard for over the years!

    Don’t punish us established high CERT sellers because you want more money!!

    As Liam said: “Keep the CERT system the same and maybe have a recent activity meter on their profile page…”

    That would PERFECT!

  • Antonella

    Terrible idea. Obviously intended to promote those that can earn PPH commission rather than as an indicator of quality of work. If a freelancer is not active on the platform they are no use to PPH in terms of earning them money. The implication seems obvious to me.

    So those of us that work hard on other projects and have also built up reputation on here are penalised?

    If this comment is published I will be amazed!

  • Vanessa

    I don’t understand the need for this. Surely the current CERT takes into consideration the amount of hourlies that you are selling within the last 6 months anyway so why then reinforce this again at the sacrifice of past work? That makes very little sense. You are penalising sellers who have built up good feedback and reputation on here. Those new sellers who are performing well will see their CERT improve regardless, you have already changed the home page now to favour these with “trending” – what more do you want to do? We all started at the bottom and no one gave us a helping hand so why is this any different? P.s this is from a CERT 10 seller. You have changed the system so much that the visibility of quality sellers are now near impossible – your site is filtered with cheap £6 hourlies and the latest changes in the last few months are fuelling this. Completely disastrous move PPH and you’ll regret it.

  • FC

    I would certainly urge PPH to consider the comments carefully; as a long term user of the site, I find that the quantity of projects has increased but the quality now varies, which means that one becomes quite selective when bidding. Also, other commitments mean it may not necessarily be possible to always be available to work on jobs consistently rather than as one-offs.

    Perhaps one metric could be to chart the length of time a user has been at e.g. CERT 5 or CERT 4.

  • Athar Anis

    I think this is a great idea. I have been thinking about it more often. One thing that i want to share is, you gotta re-visit the rating system too.

    Let me explain:

    As a seller, i am always sensitive about my rating, and always want to keep above 95%. But what happens if a buyer votes me down (and that too, for no reason). There must be a system in place, that can wipe off the negative feedback after a certain time. (just like points on my driving license)

    So, after 3 consecutive 5 stars, one of my negative feedback should at least be ignored. This will help me get back to where i was, considering that i have performed well in last 3 projects.

    This will also help us, sellers, get motivated and earn more.

    I hope you will consider this.

    Thanks
    Athar

  • Paul

    CERT should be based on quality of work not earnings.

    My CERT yo yo’s from 5 to 4 and back again because their isn’t enough decent new work on here but I do have quite a lot of repeat work for existing customers.

    There’s plenty of “I’d like a website for $10” work but very little work with a realistic level of pay or clear project definition.

    As the quality of jobs decreases so does the quality of freelancers. If PPH want to continue encouraging those who work for £2 per hour the reputation of the site will continue to diminish along with PPH’s earnings.

    Such a shame as it is a good idea being implemented badly.
    Paul

  • Paul

    Hourlie are a complete waste of time now.

    If you look for an hourlie and view one, A pop up appears featuring something almost the same but cheaper.

    Why bother putting an hourlie up when PPH are just going to use it to advertise someone else’s?

    Why do PPH push buyers towards cheaper hourlies? Surely that reduces your income?
    Very odd

  • Jose

    I don’t understand the logic at ALL and its not fair also. As a seller, we don’t get job regularly. So CERT level should be consider at least 1 year data.

  • Jose

    CERT should be based on quality of work not earnings.

  • Don

    The really daft thing is say you earn £20 you get like £16 back in your account. PPH charges 15%!! Ebay and Amazon only charge 10% and that is enough! Why charge the seller and not the buyer like everywhere else? That is how VAT works. Plus 2% paypal fees! Total joke!

    I do not know what they have done to CERT but I have outstanding reviews and excellent quality of work but have a low CERT as people advertise on here that are vastly underqualified for what they post, so I ask for a refund and MY CERT is affected.

    Plus I am replying in excellent time and noticed my CERT slid from CERT 2 to CERT 1 as I was watching a film, what did I do? Why so erratic?

    This could be a really good site but these things let it down.

  • Douglas S.

    The CERT system as you are wanting to improve does not seem to be reasonable. I do believe that the total time should be taken into consideration. That being stated I believe that if a person is inactive for 6 months then that persons OVERALL sales adv. should decline. Should you go only on the past 6 months? NO. Some of us have worked very hard to get high rankings and by implementing this into the CERTs you will see alot of people who really do not deserve to be in the top levels get that status.

    I keep seeing how this will be good for “newcomers”. Not to be insensitive, but new comers need to earn their right to the rank and recognition just like the rest of us Freelancers. Catering to low quality work and to those that do not want to earn a spot from long term dedication and results (as 6 months is a very short time when looking at the big picture of a freelancer’s career) is only going to cause an increase in disputes and a loss of revenue if anything.

    Why try to fix a wheel that is not broke.

  • Dhirendra Kunwar

    It is always great to use recent data for user rating/analysis.

  • Laura Mathieson

    I think this is a good idea, if you aren’t billing anything for 6 months then clearly PPH isn’t that important to you. However it seems unfair to make such a person start again with a complete novice – could you also show recent CERT from say a year ago so potential customers could see you have history?
    Also let’s have some more stages, the jump from 5 to 10 is too big a step change and lumps many 5s in with newcomers – I share my 4 year presence, 100% feedback, 63 review platform with sellers who have a fraction of that status.

  • Liam B

    Ive been followingnthis closely and it does seem the majority of people are against this. Maybe you should offer a poll of this and member suggested alternatives as the way you are going you could be leaning towards ruining pph.I personally think the meter idea of activity level is the best option as i mentioned above. An activity level in last 6 months rated from 1 to 5 simply as an indicator for any buyer to take that information as thet see fit.

    I agree with Chris on the popup hourlie s as well. Its an awful idea it needs taking off.

  • Paul Benbow

    If someone has reached level 5 this means they are a good provider and buyers should and will want to be made aware of this. Resetting a level 5 after not billing in 6 months does not mean they have become unskilled and inexperienced. This all seems to be motivated by more money and not about providing a better service for buyers or sellers. This will trip you up in the end.

    An activity meter seems the most sensible suggestion but that would not make as much money of course.

  • Jan White

    .
    Paul said ” If you look for an Hourlie and view one, A pop up appears featuring something almost the same but cheaper.”

    Yesterday, I found this was true and PPH I wonder why you have done this?

  • Simon T

    CERT is a terrible system and should be stopped. It’s the star ratings and feedback that are important.

  • Chris

    Ok upon looking at profiles you already have this feature!!!!

    “Last project: 16 Dec 2014”
    “Response time: Within a few hours”

    So tell me why do you need to completely mess up CERT rankings?

    And like I said before have you noticed everyone with a low CERT is saying how this is a “good idea” thats because they will get the opportunity now to move up the rankings with lots of cheap hourlie sales!

    Shocking idea! I think you need to respect peoples hard work over the years to gain their higher rank! not just come on here sell hundreds of £2 hourlies in a short space of time and shoot straight into the top 10!!

    I hope you are taking everyones comments into account because a lot of established and higher Rank sellers are seriously concerned!!

  • adrian

    This is the kind of idea that could only come from a corporation that has forgotten its roots. (I’ll bet there’s an accountant involved in this.) You want to penalise those people who have been here a long time and helped build up the company if for example they get ill or take a holiday or have things happening in their lives that require other priorities for a while?

    Of course there will be a few newcomers who bid low prices in desperation to get jobs who think this is a good idea. If you want to make this a race to the bottom then so be it. But if you care about the long-term viability of the site, then I suggest you show people who have built up a good rating by doing quality work at a fair price that you actually respect them and want to keep them here. Scrap this daft idea right away.

  • Dawn

    It seems that you are telling buyers that sellers who haven’t billed lately are a bad professional. Not always the case. You need to take into account that most professionals maximise their sources, and don’t put all their eggs into one basket, ie. PPH. What if a seller gets a long term on-site project with a high profile brand? Meaning they don’t have time to work via PPH at that time? Then, when they come back from this engagement, they’ve found that their CERT has gone down, even though they are professional, do great work and have a wealth of experience. Buyers look for people with experience and skills, not how recently they bowed down to PPH.

  • susan

    I agree with many other that this is a bad idea. The website has so many problems and real issues that need fixing, why not concentrate on those before penalising sellers for a random and unnecessary reason?

  • John Ray

    I disagree with the proposed changes. PPH shouldn’t alienate freelancers who have won work in the past, and generated commission for PPH, but have recently been less successful in winning work.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    I totally agree with Dawn – just what I wanted to say. As professionals, we also get clients from our websites, networking, referrals, marketing, etc – we don’t just get business from PPH. Good God, if we had to reply on PPH only, we’d be broke! We have to pay extortionate fees to PPH and have to endure countless undercutting to our bids by non-professionals willing to work for £2 an hour or less, and buyers asking for a job that will take 3 days and only willing to pay £10! This site is become a joke and if you don’t start looking after your long-term sellers who have been loyal to you for years and have given you hundreds/thousands of pounds in revenue – then I’m afraid this site will not be around in a few years. And that would be a shame, as the concept is good (if you would just stop messing about with it).

  • George

    Well at least its been clarified, and 6 months is not too bad.. But please please, address the issue of jobs that pay well below minimum wage. The aspiration that everyone here has is, that they might have to slog on $10 jobs for a little while, until their ratings rise, then they can make some decent money.. But when 90% of jobs are $10 logos.. An experienced freelancer has no choice but to decline them. And basing CERT on frequency, doesn’t reflect quality.. Perhaps like one person has suggested, just have a widget that says when the person was last active.. This is a great site, and its nice to see new ideas implemented. Lets try to make it better for 2015, with better quality jobs and improved revenues, that motivate ppl to work. Not to become disheartened with below minimum wage unworkable jobs. Thanks

  • Christos

    Thank you all for your comments. We are reading carefully and will soon give you an update on this.

    Best regards,
    Christos
    Product Manager @PPH

  • Dawn B

    PPH – all you are doing with this constant interference is annoying the more professional and experienced freelancers.

    Most of the budgets are far too low to attract the more experienced freelancers. Maybe you should look to improving your site to attract better quality projects and improving customer service instead of punishing freelancers who do not invoiced on a frequent basis

  • Chris

    Christos,

    Its good you are taking note, and if you have read what I have read then you should be scrapping this idea immediately. Come up with better ideas that don’t punish established high quality and highly rated sellers!!

    Leave CERT alone, you have already impacted sellers with the awful ‘trending’ filter and this would just add insult to injury!

  • Vanessa

    Can PPH address why when you go on to any hourlie a pop up comes up recommending the same service but cheaper?

    Why are you so focused on reducing the cost rather than quality? You are pricing any quality freelancers out of the market in favour of cheap low quality £6 hourlies.

  • liam

    The last change to the CERT ratings was a disaster,
    why make the same mistake again?

    What you are suggesting is to artificially inflate the ratings of sellers with limited feedback.
    This is so they will win more work. (This is not in buyers interests).

    By all means if a seller is not selling in 6 months, reduce their cert to a 4 or 3, but to push them back to 2 or 1 means that all history does not count (only current work done- in the last 6 months)

    Any change should benefit all 3 parties of the ecosystem.

  • Carlos Diaz

    Absolutely agree with comments about established freelancers and pphers here.

    I am at CERT2 Level here, and I have won jobs due to my experience in other platforms. Seriously, If I don’t tell I have more than 5 years and more than 1,000 hours worked on other site, working here would have been an awful experience.

    Please, delete this feature or changes, it will bother to more established freelancers. The key now is to lower fees, attract more clients, add payment methods such as Neteller (which offers a prepaid debit card).

    Take this site seriously, or you will just vanish from the internet due to lack of commitment both for clients and for freelancers.

  • Elaine Rashbrook

    Not a great idea – sometimes you are busy with other stuff and move away from PPH for a while, some may even take a work break – maternity perhaps – should we really penalise hard working, loyal PPH’ers for that??

  • Ed Moss

    I appreciate the Cert system is just a mechanism to keep people invoicing through PPH, and why not? After all, you do introduce business to us. However you ARE generously rewarded for it. What annoys me is that time would be better spent by PPH:

    1) Showing job placers how to present their jobs. The majority are below appalling in quality, where bidders have to ask the silliest of supplementary questions to elicit what exactly the brief is all about and ask silly questions as to whether the budget is for the entire job.

    2) Teaching bidders that jobs with a budget under the minimum wage for an apprentice, let alone a professional, is simply not acceptable. For myself alone this week I have been recommended for three jobs where the budget equates to £3 an hour which is an insult!

    3) Show bidders how to offer a budget in the currency of their country of residence – I rejected three jobs this week from the UK that were budgeted in Dollars.

    4) All this messing around with the likes of . . . . .

    “Therefore if in the last 6 months a Seller does not do any billing on PeoplePerHour they will have to prove they can win work on PeoplePerHour by qualifying again in 3 months period like our new Sellers have to do.”

    …. is nothing but an unnecessary travesty that will do nothing but annoy the real professionals. Doing this means that PPH will no longer do what it says on the tin for bidders – if I was to gain a 12 month contract at £100k, I would certainly take a back seat with PPH – it doesn’t mean I am any way less a professional by taking a break for a year. You have to appreciate there IS more to life for freelancers than PPH.

    If you want to ensure professionals go through PPH for billing, perhaps reduce your fees! I did a job for £120 this week that netted me £98.40 which I find unacceptable.

    My advice is to start to think more about your long-terms sellers and buyers. Stop fiffing and faffing around with incidentals. Leave it to ebay and Amazon to beggar around with their terms and consitions to the extent that users get totally frustrated.

    You may not realise it, but it is getting harder and harder for we professionals (and remember, I have been with you since your inception) to gain work from PPH. You need to face up to the awful reality that there are things on PPH (outside what I have already mentioned) that are crying out desperately for a fix.

    If not, your respectable professionals will start leaving in droves.

    And remember, webuyanycar, just eat and gocompare were once monopolies in their respective industries, and the way PPH is heading, it is perfect fodder for a 20-something to go to Lord Sugar for the 11th series of the Apprentice with an improved model.

    Sorry to be so brutal, but I haven’t said all this lightly and only with the best of intention.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    For PPH to push the same Hourlie but cheaper makes absolutely no business sense for your company Christos – you’ll be getting much less commission. Why would you do that?

  • Vivienne Neale

    I think the idea of having to prove yourself all over is just bad practice. Sometimes work is coming in elsewhere and I just cannot do work on PPH – it just happens. To start all over again is crazy. In the end you alienate people who are good for the company as a whole The relationship should be symbiotic. By all means have a little banner that says ‘active’ that seems fair but don;t take their cert away…it’s like the fiasco over taking a holiday and finding your cert plummeting. I think once you get to 5 you have proved yourself. With so many freelancing sites and opportunities PPH should do their best to keep people but not with draconian measures.

  • Susana

    I really hope that you would pay attention to get more good clients into PPH instead of changing CERT rules frequently.

    Sadly we can see how SuperTasker is getting all the clients we used to have here in PPH for very low rates that force us to reduce our prices.

    Maybe if you consider stablishing minimum rates when a Seller post a project we would be more active not only bidding but promoting PPH platform.

    Motivation is almost gone.

  • Issam

    I was downgraded from CERT5 to 4 because I stopped taking jobs for a while, but I actually was working on a big project nowhere else but here on PPH !!! … So no one should take big projects that take 2 weeks or more because you’ll be downgraded no matter how much deposit you have. If this simple logic isn’t in place that makes me worry about the platform.
    Also how do you calculate the response time ?! do I have to answer any message even if it was “Talk to you soon” or “Cheers” ?!! or you have a smart NLP system to judge that ?!!

    Please PPH reconsider the downgrading system, it’s not fair at all.

  • Niamh White

    TERRIBLE!!!!

  • David

    Dear PPH,

    is there a way the system knows users who are really active on system and are committed to pph?

    Also for people like me who are a huge fan and rely on pph and wants to be more involved is there a way of becoming pph ambassador? I see some people having the badge.

    Thanks PPH team, you guys are great.

  • Glenn Somerset

    Not impressed. I am now back actively on PPH having worked on a large project for the last 2-3 years. I have a 100% rating and am Cert 2. From what you are saying, the fact that I have delivered on budget, on time in the past will mean nothing if I’m not constantly working for PPH.

  • Derek Thompson

    I think the whole Cert issue is misdirection. The best way of securing the long term profitability of PPH and its users’ livelihoods is to apply a budget filter.

    End the stupidity of $10 an hour (or worse!). Recently someone was offering $3 per hour – why would PPH allow this when it wants to promote itself as a site for working professionals?

  • Ed Moss

    Spot on Derek

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    Here here Derek! I don’t know about other countries, but we have a national minimum wage here in the UK (£6.50ph for over 21s), but PPH are happy to allow buyers to offer considerably less than this (this may have legal ramifications for PPH, I don’t know). And the majority of professionals charge considerably more than this because we are specialists with years of experience. When buyers offer insulting sums of money, they can’t be surprised at the types of proposals they receive! Pay peanuts, you get monkeys.

    PPH, you really need to educate buyers about the average charges for freelancers in different professions, e.g. writers, proofreaders, web designers, illustrators, etc. and stop buyers listing at such low amounts. PPH is losing all credibility. It used to be the Selfridges of freelancing sites, but you started meddling and it dropped down to Sainsbury’s. Considerably more meddling and no intervention when sellers kept warning you about the budgets being offered, and sadly PPH has now become a ‘Poundland freelancing service’.

    A massive shame.

  • Ed Moss

    Sadly it’s not possible to knock the nail more firmly on the head than this.

    Knock…. knock….. anyone from PPH there????

  • A. S.

    There is a fundamental flaw in the PPH system that asks people to specify a ‘willing to spend’ – people get wise to the idea that PPH prevents sellers from bidding less than 20% below the ‘willing to spend’ price….but PPH doesn’t restrict sellers from bidding way over the willing to spend figure. From a buyers perspective, it’s better for them to enter a low willing to spend figure than to pre-fix a price range by specifying an accurate price – at least they get the full range if they specify a low price.

    It’s not right…but it does happen!

    My solution – if I think a job’s a good job, I’ll bid what is reasonable, regardless of the willing to spend…no adverse affect on the number of jobs won!

  • Ben

    Unfortunately as I understand the rules, freelancers in the UK are not eligible for the National Minimum Wage – not that it makes it morally right to permit such low rates mind you, just that no-one’s going to get into legal hot water about it.

    I think it would be really helpful if PPH could drive home the point to buyers that hourly rates charged by freelancers are not necessarily their take-home pay rates. As businesses in our own right, we have to factor in our operational costs which means a buyer may be charged a higher per-hour rate than if they were to employ someone in their office using their IT etc. Whilst this is of course offset by the fact that the buyer doesn’t offer the freelancer usual employment benefits and has no ongoing obligation to that person beyond an agreed job, it’s a point I see buyers failing to grasp or accept frequently.

    This is one of the reasons why the £6/hr minimum charge officially allowed by PPH is so daft (never mind that it’s easy to bypass for a seller placing a job advert). Not only does it undercut the National Minimum Wage in it’s own right but when getting to how much of that can be considered ‘take home pay’, the situation is significantly worse.

  • Linda Innes

    Hi Christos,
    My concern about this change is that if you ‘remove’ the ratings for PPH freelancers who haven’t been very active on PPH recently, it will be very hard to distinguish established, experienced and skilled freelancers from hobbyists who are just starting.
    For example, if I have been inundated with well-paid work from elsewhere, or if I spend several months on one long-term project (as a writer, it can take over 6 months to complete a book), it doesn’t mean I am ‘inactive’.
    I would not support this proposed change, as it invites people to be assessed on quantity rather than quality – where quick, cheap, frequent jobs on PPH will rate better than longer term, more measured single projects.
    Having spent years building a reputation on PPH and building a portfolio of satisfied customers and reviews – I would be very upset if I had to start from nothing every few months, like a novice.
    Clients can see the dates of last jobs/ reviews, and make their own judgement on activity or inactivity. There is no need to develop a system that wipes out history, experience and reputation to go for quick hits and rapid turnover.
    Not happy. I use PPH less than I did because it doesn’t give me the value it did 4 years ago when I started out here. This kind of development will make me even less likely to use it. Why not think of ideas to encourage and support freelancers, not punish and penalise them?

  • Jan White

    Maybe Buyers could have a CERT rating too!

  • Arnab Wahid

    // “Therefore if in the last 6 months a Seller does not do any billing on PeoplePerHour they will have to prove they can win work on PeoplePerHour by qualifying again in 3 months period like our new Sellers have to do. ” //

    This is a joke, right? You’re gonna strip the ranking of a top cert worker because he was on a break? He’s going to have to prove that he’s capable to do work…to whom exactly? Smart buyer will always prefer contractors with experience, while PPH is plotting a way to trap them to do work for less money at the starting level yet again. You people are the worst!!

    So, PPH is going to reward those who choose to slave 24/7 without a break?

    I am strongly considering leaving PPH. It has become two-faced jellyfish.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    Oh yes Jan – I love that idea!

  • Chris Reaney

    I think this is slightly unfair as I have been extremely ill and unable to work in the last 8-9 months so I need to have my cert to be able to carry on where I left off!! My skills have been unchanged by this!!

  • Andrea

    this is absolutely crazy.
    instead of rewarding who has a durature and solid base of reviews which can clearly determine their real quality, in this way you’ll advantage all those cheap scammers who doesn’t have any confirmed skill (in pph I mean), and just collect dozens of endorsements and starring (by cheating and exchanging endorsements with other cheap newby without even knowing them).

    so, I have about 100 reviews and 100% rating and I’ve worked with more than 30 different clients. This should prove that I am a skilled and punctual worker.
    if by instance I worked with just a couple of clients within the past 6 months (e.g. for big projects), my CERT will be calculated on the basis of say 8-10 reviews (monthly invoices) and 2-3 clients?
    so in this way I’ll have the same rank as a freelancer that joins now and finalizes (with good rating) a few simple jobs?
    and what if he’s also cheating and exchanging endorsements/starring or sharing pph like crazy? he will probably end up ranking above me.

    sorry guys but you’re definitely going in the opposite direction here.
    you should work to fix the CERT and avoid newby cheating, and instead you’re actually making their life even easier, and penalizing real quality professionals.

    you have supertasker for offering cheap cowboy freelancer’s services, you should really take care of keeping pph as your good quality platform and push to keep here the quality freelancers, and recently seems that you’re actually advantaging the cheap cheaters here as well..

    and please take these as friendly suggestions which are told on your interests, because we can go somewhere else if we’re not happy, but you’re going to get a bad hit if pph fails and becomes another house of scammers and pretend developers.

  • Vinita Amrit

    Where there are over 20 proposals to choose from and over 5k prospective bidders, tempering CERT to prove that the freelancer is actually active – is that just?

    Strongly negated. Try to bring in a few more rewards and badges for those who do good. Please do not make fun of someone’s skills.

  • Rahul Parashar

    No doubt PPH want to just kill their top sellers and want the cream go out to some other site of look to promote their business on their own by making their own website and do SEO / spend on google adword to get the traffic and no more rely on any of freelancing site.

    I am forced to be harsh and rude coz of recent changes that are happening in PPH ranking system. We (top sellers) have not recovered from it yet and there is another bombing to kill all their top sellers.

    1. There is dramatic loss of sales and enquires that is happening on top selling hourlies because of change in ranking algorithum of hourlies and all our request to promote their top seller and stop being biased towards just new sellers is falling deaf ears.

    2. If there would be no enquires or sales and further if PPH want to kill the CERT score, meaning they just want to flush out all top sellers who has major source of income from selling hourlies and not bidding on jobs. If this too fall in deaf ears then there would no more top sellers / cream left in entire PPH

    This community / marketplace is losing all its charm and cream by demotivating their top sellers of all time who have done hard and non stop work in past years to get to a stage where they are now. And they want to leave no breather and work more harder and hardest to sustain their ranking. No doubt we are working hardest but they are not making their system as competitive as they expect their sellers to be.

    Its high time to take some action else we (top sellers) would no more be here on this site and look for alternatives and in end no system would work without the cream.

    With all due respect and regards
    Rahul Parashar

  • Ed Moss

    Plenty of sensible comments from PPH’ers here. Meanwhile, this week, I was offered to bid on a job at approximately $5 (£3.21) an hour, demanding research, native English, 100% correct grammar, SEO experience (SEO has turned into the internet’s equivalent of PPI misselling!), and keyword extraction for them to use on their website.

    That’s $5 (£3.21) before PPH fees, commission and currency conversion.

    Surely it only takes a small piece of HTML code to cure this abuse?

    There is no way professional writing in the native-English world should be less than about £12 an hour after all charges and commission (even then, that is realistically too low). And how about preventing UK-based job placers from trading in Dollars? Or how about setting a statutory houly rate for trades?

    A long-overdue reponse fom PPH is now needed please.

  • DerekT

    Well said, Ed. I don;t know whether repeated flagging up of underpaying jobs creates PPH problems for those who do the flagging, but that seems to be our only way of exercising some quality control over the jobs that come in. I believe that if PPH had a reputation as a higher payer it would, in the long run, make it more sustainable. As yet though (and I have raised it with them before), it’s still on m wish list. Thanks for sharing your story.
    DT

  • Chris

    Christos, any updates on this?

    I sincerely hope that you have taken the time to read the comments above and realise that this was a very bad idea?

  • Kayleigh

    I completely agree with Linda. I was off for Maternity Leave last year so what happens if you don’t work for a while because of holiday or illness etc. Would I then lose all of my built up ratings and credibility because of this ridiculous change. CERT was a bad enough introduction in the first place as now we have to focus on ratings and criteria instead of just pleasing our customers. It’s difficult enough to earn a living through PPH when you charge such a high commission and we have to compete with so many low priced, low quality sellers that we don’t need this additional feature making it even harder for buyers to choose our service.

    Buyers want work doing well but most of all they want it quickly. They won’t waste time looking into what the different CERTS mean or who has the best track record on their profile. If they saw two proposals from someone with a CERT 5 and someone with a CERT 3 they’d choose the 5 although with your new proposal the 5 could have only been working for a month and not have enough experience whereas the 3 could provide the best service. Isn’t that what’s supposed to matter?

  • Roy Thompson

    One of the most amazing jobs I saw recently was a London based accountant asking for a quite complex piece of work. He was offering £6 per hour. I idly wondered how much per hour he charged his clients. Nothing will change until PPH respects its sellers.

  • Ed Moss

    Nail firmly on the head Roy – I was offered detailed research by a London-based SEO “Expert” followed by produicing 10 x keyword rich and SEO (yet he was the alleged ‘expert’) friendly articles of 800 words each for £40 (and the job was also priced in dollars so not only PPH commission and fees but also exchange rate to come off the fee, leaving about £31 for almost 10 hours work). What I can’t get my head around is that there were four UK bidders.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    I think this ridiculous and totally unfair CERT system has sellers happy to bid for stupidly low paid jobs as they are so desperate to build up their score. But it’s creating a perpetual downward spiral, and unless every seller says enough and refuses to bid on insulting budgets, then it’ll never change.

  • Suzie Tall

    What has activity got to do with quality? Activity is purely down to the demand that buyers have – if buyers do not need my service I cannot sell, but I am still available to do quality work.

  • Alison Runham

    Your CERT rating already drops if you haven’t billed very much work, meaning that freelancers such as myself who have another job – and therefore don’t taken on the same quantity of work as others, or sometimes take a break from freelancing – are penalised.

    No matter that my feedback rating is 100%. Mo matter that nobody has ever had cause to complain about my service. My CERT rating has dropped to 3 and is dropping still because I’m not bringing in enough money. And bringing in any money at all is harder and harder on PPH, because despite their promises that they were committed to quality on both sides of the playing field, the number of poorly outlined and ludicrously low-paid jobs have continued to increase.
    Sometimes I hit the job feedback button and select the ‘Low Job Budget’ report. I fill in the explanation box. What do I hear back?…. Nothing. What happens to the job advert?… Nothing. So what’s the point on that button? Do PPH even LOOK at those feedback reports?
    Out of interest, has ANYONE ever hit the feedback button and got a response from PPH?

  • Ed Moss

    Take a look at job #673810 – what an insult and he’s Cert 4!!!! Who are the idiots bidding for that job. £2 an hour after fees and commissions, if even that ?

  • Jan White

    Alison Runham said… Out of interest, has ANYONE ever hit the feedback button and got a response from PPH?

    Hi Alison, Yes I frequently get feedback and just two days ago, Strat from the Helpdesk, went out of his way to provide a satisfactory answer when i reported a job as ‘LOW BUDGET’.

    I find if I submit a report as a question, I get an answer for feedback BUT if I just send a msg with no question, no one replies. I presume the Helpdesk answer questions rather than send out pointless ad hoc emails. All the best, Jan

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    To be fair Ed Moss, that job is from a seller based in India, so of course it will be a much lower rate, probably a very good rate in India. It’s not the seller’s fault, but the problem with the site being international and not just UK-based.

  • Andrea

    yes, he’s from India, but if you read the description of the job and his replies to the comments below, he specify that he’s offering $10 (in total, not per hour) for 4 articles of 500 words each.

    I’ve flagged it, and he totally deserve it.

  • Ed Moss

    I’ve reported many stupiud jobs and made what I think are quite constructive suggestions over the years, but I never seem to elecit a response.

    I hate to bite tha had that has helped feed me, but the only solution now is some serious competitio for PPH. They have fallen into the standard profit-driven internet model trap.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    There’s enough professionals on here to start a rival UK site to PPH, with added hindsight on what doesn’t work! I think PPH needs to concentrate on keeping the sellers happy, not the buyers, or they’ll be in for a shock one day.

  • Derek Thompson

    I think a good way forward would be to have a live forum or webcall about these issues with Sellers and the PPH team to get t the bottom of all ths.

  • Final Draft Publishing Ltd

    They read all these comments but do what they want anyway – the sellers (the people who actually pay to use the site) are the least important, especially the ones who have been loyal since the beginning! In fact, the longer a seller has been on here, the more contempt they are being shown by PPH! I think I’ll close down my account and open a new one and PPH will fall over backwards to support me. Sound familiar? Banks, mobile phone companies, energy suppliers…

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