What’s the difference between freelancers and agencies?

Upwork has two kinds of freelancer accounts: individual and agency. Individual freelancers work independently and directly with their clients. Agencies are freelancer accounts that can add team members who work together on projects for their clients.

When you hire an individual freelancer, you will typically communicate directly with the freelancer about the project. In addition, the freelancer sets the rate and your payments go directly to the freelancer.

On the other hand, if you hire an agency member you are effectively hiring the agency itself, which has a number of freelancers that it pays to do work on your project. On agency proposals and contracts you may communicate mostly with a project manager or with the freelancer or freelancers working on your project, depending on how the agency does business and what arrangements you negotiate with the agency. In addition, agency contracts are paid to the agency itself, not a specific agency freelancer. The agency then pays its freelancers off platform for the work they perform for the agency at rates negotiated among them.

For more information on agencies, please visit the Hiring Headquarters.


Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

Choose your user type
Please select...
  • Freelancer
  • Client
  • Agency
Select your issue category and subcategory
Please select...
Frequently Asked Questions
Provide more details:
Provide more details:
  • Discuss with Upwork Community
Provide more details:
The contract you have issues with:
Your Client/Freelancer’s name:
Attachment (for example, screenshots):
Add Files

    Your request has been submitted

    Your ticket number is XXXXXXXXX
    We will email you as soon as we can.

    Our apologies. Something went wrong.

    Your ticket was not submitted.
    For immediate help, please check out the options to the right.
    • Chat with Customer Service
    • Discuss with Upwork Community

    We’ll start a video chat with you. Please make sure you use a desktop device with a camera to continue the process. Also, allow Upwork temporary use of your camera and microphone. You may disable this access after the chat session.

    If all of our agents are busy when you attempt to chat, please hold, and one of our agents will be with you shortly.

    We noticed that you're currently using a browser that is not supported by our video verify process.

    We recommend that you switch to Google Chrome or Firefox in order to successfully complete verification. Thank you

    Upwork’s Category Specialists are standing by to help you discover and plan new projects.

    Ask them about roles or projects that you want to learn more about. They can also draft job posts for you.

    Your chat will begin in the bottom right corner of this page.

    Upwork’s Category Specialists are currently offline.

    Send us a message below and we’ll respond via email as soon as we can. You can also come back here during business hours (Mon-Fri, 6am-5pm PT) to chat with us.

    How can we help?
    Thanks for your message! A Category Specialist will respond to your message via email as soon as they can.
    Powered by Zendesk