You have two contract options when you create a job post:

  • Hourly Contract: You’ll pay your freelancer an hourly rate for the time they work on your project. You can negotiate this rate, which the freelancer includes in their proposal, during the interview process.
  • Fixed-Price Contract: You’ll pay your freelancer one single fee for the entire project. Freelancers bid on the project and you can negotiate both the price ($5 minimum) and milestones during the interview process.

If you're looking for advice on whether your project is best suited to an hourly or fixed-price contract, check out this article.


How it Works:

  • Hourly: Freelancers log time with the Upwork Desktop App. You can monitor your freelancer’s progress by checking their Work Diary. You have the option to dispute hours if necessary.

Note

Enterprise contracts have manual time enabled by default.

  • Fixed-Price: You and your freelancer agree to certain project milestones upon which your project is structured. You can make the project one milestone or split the project into multiple parts for multiple milestones. For payment, you deposit milestone funds into Upwork escrow, and you have the chance to review your freelancer’s work before any payment is released to them.
    • Milestones can be added, deleted, or edited during the contract if needed.

Billing Process:

  • Hourly: You are billed on a weekly basis. Freelancers log hours each week until midnight UTC on Sundays. The hours logged are billed automatically every Monday, and you have until Friday to review the work and file a dispute if necessary. We release the funds to the freelancer the following Wednesday.
  • Fixed-Price: You submit deposits into escrow which will be released at the completion of a milestone or project. When a freelancer submits work for a milestone, you have 14 days to approve the work or request changes. When you approve the work, we release the funds to the freelancer.
  • Enterprise Clients: Enterprise work defaults to an hourly approach, but your account will be invoiced in accordance with your customized finance setup.

Payment Protection

Upwork Payment Protection adds security to the payment process, providing you and your freelancer with the peace of mind needed to make your best work happen.

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