You may know a freelancer you’d like to work with who isn’t on Upwork yet, yet you still want the convenience of Upwork’s platform. When that happens, you can use the Bring Your Own Talent (BYOT or BYO) feature to invite a freelancer to Upwork to work with you on a contract. From short-term contracts to recurring jobs, Upwork centralizes your contracts, payments, and reporting in one place.

NOTE

Any client in the Upwork Marketplace can use the BYOT option to bring their own talent to Upwork! Please note that the process varies depending upon your membership plan — find the details below.

Invite talent: Marketplace members


Marketplace users can add their own talent to Upwork in three simple steps.

1. Find the Jobs tab and choose Bring Your Own Talent.

Bring Your Own Talent allows you to invite a freelancer who is not currently a registered member of Upwork to work with you on a contract. They'll automatically receive an invitation to register on Upwork to access your contract.

Bring your own talent to Upwork

2. Complete the invitation form.

The invitation form helps to set the essential details of your contract.

PRO TIPS

These key fields can help you quickly and easily complete your invitation form.

Contract Description

If you’ve already discussed details with your freelancer, the invitation form is your opportunity to note basic details for reference. You can add a short overview here, or any other information that you would like to record for invoices or audits.

Remember, you can always share files and messages later with your talent to discuss specific project details.

 

Agencies vs. Freelancers

There are two kinds of talent on Upwork: agencies and freelancers. If you’re hiring an individual, even if that individual has their own LLC or agency, you may find it simpler to choose Freelancer in the invitation. If you’re planning to contract a team of individuals, you can choose Agency to assure all talent gets paid appropriately.

 

Hourly vs. Fixed-Price

There are two kinds of BYOT contracts on Upwork: Hourly and Fixed-Price. For an hourly project, your talent will log hours and be paid an hourly rate. For a fixed-price project, your talent will receive a set sum for the work completed. Learn more about the contract types here.

Get to work!

Your freelancer will receive an email with your contract terms. They can open the Get Started link in that email to create an Upwork account, accept your offer, and start work.

Please note that your freelancer will be charged the standard Upwork freelancer service fees. Most clients talk with their freelancers to negotiate contract terms before sending an invitation, taking any fees into consideration.

Invite talent: Enterprise and Compliance members


Upwork users on Enterprise and Compliance plans can invite their own talent to Upwork for both immediate and future offers.

1. Find the Jobs tab and choose Bring Your Own Talent.

Selecting Bring Your Own Talent allows you to invite a freelancer who is not currently a registered member of Upwork to work with you on a contract. They'll receive an invitation to register on Upwork in order to access your contract.

This allows talent to work with you on a contract without being included in the public marketplace. They'll only be invited to your company’s account to work on this and any future contracts.

Bring your own talent

2. Choose Freelancers or Agencies.

Invite a Freelancer or an Agency

PRO TIP

If you're inviting a business, such as an agency, that exists outside of Upwork, note whether you’ll be working with a team or a sole proprietor. Will this project be contracting multiple members of the business?

 

If you’re contracting an individual or a sole proprietor, even if they work under an independent LLC, you may find using the freelancer invitation to be a more streamlined experience.

3. Choose present or future.

Invite talent based on your needs. With BYOT, you can send an immediate offer or add freelancers and agencies to your Talent Cloud for future offers.

What is a Talent Cloud?

A Talent Cloud is your virtual bench of professional freelancers and agencies. By adding an individual to your Talent Cloud, they join your private network or group on Upwork. You can reach out to this talent with future offers at any time.

4. Complete the invitation form.

The invitation form helps to set the essential details of your contract.

PRO TIPS

 

These key fields can help you to quickly and easily complete your invitation form.

Contract Description

If you’ve already discussed details with your freelancer, the invitation form is your opportunity to note basic details for reference. You can add a short overview here, or any other information that you would like to record for invoices or audits.

Remember, you can always share files and messages later with your talent to discuss specific project details.

Agencies vs. Freelancers

There are two kinds of talent on Upwork: agencies and freelancers. If you’re hiring an individual, even if that individual has their own LLC or agency, it’s still may be simpler to choose Freelancer in the invitation. If you’re planning to contract a team of individuals, you can choose Agency to assure all talent gets paid appropriately.

Hourly vs. Fixed-Price

There are two kinds of BYOT contracts on Upwork: Hourly and Fixed-Price. For an hourly project, your talent will log hours and be paid an hourly rate. For a fixed-price project, your talent will receive a set sum for the work completed. Learn more about the contract types here.

5. Get to work!

Your talent will receive an email with your invitation and personal message. They can open the Activate Account link in that email to create an Upwork account, review any offers sent, and complete classification or onboarding tasks as needed. They will not be required to fill out a complete profile, and can skip this step at any point.

Your freelancer will not be charged a service fee to use Upwork with you for contracting and payments. If they choose to create a marketplace profile to source jobs from other clients, they will be charged the standard Upwork freelancer service fees for all offers with other clients.

Rehire your talent


If you completed a great project with a freelancer or agency via BYOT, you can choose to rehire them for future jobs.

  • Find talent you’ve previously invited under Bring Your Own Talent and send an offer.
  • Rehire former talent directly.

Freelancer Benefits


Freelancers who work via BYOT on Upwork enjoy a unique set of benefits, too.

  • Get paid quickly — Payments become available for withdrawal within days of completing work and are invoiced automatically on hourly contracts
  • Get paid simply — Client invoicing and, when work is completed, payment requests are automated
  • Work protected — Work under BYOT contracts is covered by Upwork Payment Protection and we invoice and process payments on your freelancer’s behalf

Frequently Asked Questions

I'm an Enterprise or Compliance client. Where can I check the status of my BYOT invitation?

You can check the status of an invitation anytime on the Bring Your Own Talent (BYOT) page here.

Can I invite an agency or freelancer to Upwork without a contract offer?

Most Bring Your Own Talent (BYOT) invitations include a job offer that the agency or freelancer will be able to review and accept. However, if you have an Enterprise or Compliance plan and you don’t have a project in mind, you can still send an invitation to add the talent to your Talent Cloud without sending a contract invitation first.

What fees does the agency or freelancer pay?

This depends on your plan with Upwork.

For the Marketplace plan, your freelancer will be charged the standard Upwork freelancer service fees. Most clients talk with their freelancers to negotiate contract terms before sending an invitation, taking any fees into consideration.

For Enterprise and Compliance plans, any new agency or freelancer you invite to Upwork will have a 0% service fee on all contracts with you.

If they choose to work with other clients on Upwork, your freelancer will be charged the standard Upwork freelancer service fees for contracts with any other client.

If the freelancer or agency already has a profile on Upwork, your freelancer will be charged the standard Upwork freelancer service fees and you will be charged your standard plan rates.

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