Avoid Fraudulent Employers on Odesk

Edited by Christine dela Cruz, Jonathan, Monika, Lynn

Odesk has been popular through the years as a portal for online, homebased work. You get to see different types of jobs in various industries here. It has indeed been a good alternative for most people wanting to work, but at the same time fulfill responsibilities at home. However, there appear to be some disadvantages as well. Although the majority of employers remain honest, there are still fraudulent ones out there, and these need to be handled with caution.

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How to Be Sure It is a Legitimate Job

  1. 1
    One protection for the contractors or the people looking for work is to look at the evaluation of the prospective employer
    Five stars is the maximum evaluation for excellence and one star is the poorest. The best employers are those with evaluations of 4 stars or more.
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  2. 2
    The contractor should prefer employers who pay by the hour because hourly work is guaranteed to be paid at Odesk, while work paid per project is not guaranteed
    In other words, there is a higher risk for fixed rate jobs, because Odesk will not take responsibility for ensuring that you get paid for work delivered.
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  3. 3
    You must also check whether the payment method of the client is verified or not
    A verified payment method indicates that the client has the proper channels required by Odesk in order to setup a legitimate payment method. They will usually have to link it with a valid bank account in order to get verified. Therefore, if the employer is able to do this, it shows they are not fully concealing their identity, and there are ways to track them down later on in case there are problems.
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  4. 4
    There is a reasonable recruitment process in place
    If you get the job way too quick, to the point that you were not really evaluated that well, then you may have reasonable doubts. It tells you the standards of the company are not that good. A little bit of an interview or examination should be expected. Oftentimes, legitimate clients recruit this way:
    1. Questionnaire. They will ask you to fill up a questionnaire with some key questions that they would like to have answered about you. Sometimes, instead of a questionnaire, they will give you a short examination that tests skills relevant to the job. For example, it could be a writing sample if you are applying for a writer role, or it could be a situational analysis if you are applying for a project manager role. In some cases, employers can just ask you to complete certain aptitude tests available on Odesk, especially if you have not taken them yet.
    2. Initial interview. This could be in many forms, such as:  
      1. Group interview. Some clients prefer to do the initial interview by batch in order to pre-screen candidates. The most popular tools to do this are Skype or GoToMeeting.
      2. Chat. Prior to a video interview, clients usually have a junior recruiter double check on some important points. This ensures that both parties are not wasting their time on candidates who are in fact not suitable for the job. During these chats, you can expect that employers will ask very basic things only, such as availability to work during the required hours or commitment level.
      3. Voice or video interview. This is commonly the final step in the recruitment process, prior to offering the contract on Odesk. This can be a one-time interview, or it could be done in stages, talking to different people in the organization. It is similar to how you would do it in an offline recruitment process, except that you do most of it via your computer.
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  5. 5
    The company has a valid address and contact number
    Although not all employers on Odesk prefer to indicate where exactly they are located, you should still choose those employers who don't prefer to be too anonymous. At least a website and a valid contact number should be there for you to check out if they are a legitimate company. Instinct should tell you that if a company is hiding too many things, you cannot tell for sure if they are doing good business or not.
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  6. 6
    Employers who prefer constant communication with the contractor on Skype or any other medium are, in all probability, a credible employer
    If you see that they have a management team that is available to answer any queries anytime, then you are most likely in good hands. Good and regular communication, as well as the visibility of a good organizational structure, are good indications that it is a well-oiled company.
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  7. 7
    There are some testimonials on site, coming from other contractors
    You can get an idea about how they treated other employees in the past by looking at the testimonials.
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If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


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Article Info

Categories : Communications & Education

Recent edits by: Monika, Jonathan, Christine dela Cruz

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