Upwork’s role


We’re a marketplace that gives you the tools to connect and collaborate with talent and make payments using our secure payment system.

Help you connect with talent

Our platform lets you connect with talent in the following ways as an Enterprise client:

  • Our team of Upwork Professionals will help you find the right person for your project by providing you with a shortlist of top freelancers for each job post
  • You can choose to bring your own talent and use our platform to manage contracts and pay for work
  • You can search from the wide breadth of talent on our Talent Marketplace. We provide search filters that let you refine your search, such as skills and job categories, and advanced search options

We also provide ways for freelancers to display information on their profiles that may help you identify the skills and availability you need. This can include talent badges, Expert-Vetted status, specialized Upwork Skills Certificates, links to Credly to verify certificates, and communicating their availability and interest in contract-to-hire jobs.

While our tools can help you find and connect with talent, you are responsible for vetting and choosing freelancers.

Additional services

In addition to helping you source talent, our Upwork Professionals can help you scope out your project and create your job post. Learn more about working with Upwork Professionals to manage contracts on the platform.

We provide automated reports that help you manage your contracts and payments.

If you’re an Enterprise Compliance client, we provide worker classification services and determine whether the freelancer you want to work with should be classified as an employee or independent contractor. For freelancers classified as employees, we offer the Upwork Payroll solution, where a trusted, third-party employer of record will employ the freelancer while they work with you. Client role

Client role


As a client, you’re responsible for vetting and selecting talent, managing your contracts, and complying with the terms of your subscription agreement.

Vet talent

You are responsible for vetting and onboarding the freelancers that you engage. This can include, but is not limited to, the following tasks:

  • Review freelancer profiles
  • Connect with freelancers to determine if they have the skills you need for your projects
  • Negotiate the contract and scope of work
  • Guide talent through any company-specific onboarding tasks

There may be other vetting measures that your company requires. For example. if your company requires background checks, non-disclosure (NDA) or intellectual property (IP) agreements, or other company-specific onboarding tasks, you will work with freelancers to complete those as part of your onboarding process.

Manage contracts

You need to create and manage your contract and continue to communicate with freelancers as needed. This includes the following tasks, when applicable:

  • Communicate your needs and work expectations to talent
  • Provide talent with any information they need from your company to complete the work
  • Negotiate contract start and end dates
  • Set weekly limits and limit manual hours as needed when applicable. (Note that you cannot limit manual hours for an Enterprise Compliance contract)
  • Review hours billed by freelancers weekly
  • Review deliverables and ask for changes or approve work for fixed-price contracts
  • Request contract extensions if needed
  • End contracts once your collaboration is complete

You can also set up activity codes if you want freelancers to use them to track tasks.

Freelancer role


Freelancers and agencies must follow Upwork’s Terms of Service as a user of our platform and are responsible for compliance with the terms of any relevant service contract for the project and the following tasks, as applicable:

  • For hourly jobs, track time using Upwork’s Time Tracker with memos and activity codes, if applicable
  • Accurately bill hours for hourly contracts
  • Complete the work that you both agreed upon
  • Meet deadlines for completing work, including deliverable dates for fixed-price projects

Disagreements and disputes


We encourage you to talk with talent and try to resolve any issues with your project.

Upwork is not responsible for the quality of work that freelancers submit. We offer dispute assistance for a limited time after a freelancer or agency submits hours or deliverables.

If you have an hourly contract and think that talent inaccurately billed hours that they worked on your contract, you must file any dispute during the five days after the billing period has closed for the previous week’s hours. For a fixed-price contract, you can request a refund from the freelancer within 180 days of when payment was made. The freelancer may agree or dispute the request.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are freelancers employees of Upwork?

No, freelancers are not employed by Upwork. Upwork is not involved in freelancers and client’s engagements; we offer the platform as a place for you to connect and collaborate.

Does Upwork vet freelancers for skills, location, or other factors?

You are responsible for vetting freelancers and determining whether they are suitable for your project needs. Upwork screens freelancers as users of our platform to ensure they are eligible to join and use Upwork.

We do offer Expert-Vetted badges and Upwork Skills Certificates to eligible freelancers in certain categories, and we offer identity verification badges for freelancers and clients who have verified their identity. However, you are still responsible for vetting the freelancer to ensure they have the skills that you need and are representing themselves authentically in their work with you.

Will Upwork refund for projects that are not up to our standard?

No, we are not responsible for the quality of work that talent provides.

If you don’t provide refunds, what options do I have?

We encourage you to talk with talent and try to resolve any issues with your project. Most of the time, clients and talent are able to resolve any issues.

If you have an hourly contract and think that talent inaccurately billed hours they worked on your contract, you can file a dispute during the five days after the billing period has closed for the previous week’s hours. For a fixed-price contract, you can request a refund from the freelancer within 180 days of when payment was made. The freelancer may agree or dispute the request.

Was this article helpful?

0 out of 0 found this helpful
{"global":{"message":"","icon":"info","start":"","end":""},"responsive":[{"message":"","country":"All","usertype":"all","icon":"info","start":"","end":""},{"message":"","country":"All","usertype":"all","icon":"info","start":"","end":""}]}