Introduction

It’s troubling that the exact amount of economic damage done by the ongoing pandemic is largely still a mystery. Not to mention the fact that the uncertainty this startling catastrophe has caused will likely continue to be the genesis of many long-lasting economic deviations. This is especially true in regards to job loss, unemployment, and workplace productivity, as well as employer restrictions and regulations.

For those curious enough to investigate some of the more established and verified statistics and percentages regarding COVID-19’s impact on jobs, you’ll likely find that the majority echo the same bleak details and grim data that you’d expect from an unforeseen worldwide health crisis. Yet, mixed in with all these uncertainties and gloomy predictions, you’ll find a few upsides sprinkled in.

Of these few instances, one of the more interesting and optimistic upsides is that pre-pandemic productivity levels have stayed consistent despite a rather significant rise in the number of businesses utilizing remote workplaces and freelance employees. For companies involved in this freelance platform and remote work management, like Hubstaff and Upwork, the data showed that their sites work.

Goals

Despite the challenges of a debilitating pandemic, remote jobs and freelancing through sites like Upwork and Upwork alternative Hubstaff provide opportunities for businesses to find remote workers and for freelancers to work and get paid. Unfortunately, there are still many folks looking for jobs who aren’t even aware that this kind of platform exists, or they don’t understand enough about it to give it a try.

Therefore, the goal of this article is to help those folks who need and want to use sites like Hubstaff and Upwork but aren’t quite sure how they work or what they can provide. To do this, we will provide a detailed comparison of the pros and cons between Hubstaff and Upwork.

Not to be Confused

Before we get into how Upwork and the best Upwork alternative option, Hubstaff, compare to each other, it’s important to explain that Hubstaff is a multifaceted service that offers a few different things related to helping businesses monitor and manage a remote workplace. Here are a few examples of what Hubstaff offers:

  • Capturing proof of work
  • Client time tracking
  • Project management
  • Payroll management
  • A remote talent finder (Hubstaff Talent)

Hubstaff Talent, an Upwork alternative and the freelancer platform arm of the company, is mostly what we’ll be comparing with Upwork. The other stuff Hubstaff has is very cool and worth checking out, but for now, we’ll stick to our Hubstaff Talent versus Upwork matchup.

First Things First

First Things First

The freelancer market revenue estimate for the United States is somewhere in the neighborhood of $750 billion a year. This rather shocking amount of money shows that not only are freelancers getting paid pretty well but so are the various platforms used to list and promote them.

How this works is that Upwork and Hubstaff Talent provide a platform that links freelance professionals from varying lines of work with remote workplace jobs that suit their talents. It’s really a win-win for both sides; skilled and eager freelancers can apply for and accept jobs, while those looking to hire can peruse potential options to find exactly the right person.

Both Upwork and Hubstaff work similarly in that users create a profile that asks for things like:

  • Contact information
  • Education
  • Work history
  • Job skills
  • Preferred wage amount/rate
  • Certifications and professional licenses
  • Resume and cover letter
  • Available work schedule
  • Languages you’re fluent in

Comparison

Both Hubstaff Talent and Upwork allow you to create a profile with all your relevant information and then look for and apply/bid on jobs. While both functions are more or less the same, they each have a few pros and cons that will provide a clearer view of how these two companies operate. Knowing these will allow you to formulate a preference on which is better than the other. Here are some of the pros and cons we found when using Hubstaff Talent.

Pros

  • Companies using Hubstaff Talent have access to a free job board. Also, for a small monthly fee, time tracking and comprehensive project management software are available.
  • Freelancers and businesses using Hubstaff Talent don’t have to worry about any hidden markups or fees, and there are no charges on hourly work or projects.
  • The various interactions – i.e. disagreements, problems, etc. – between freelance workers and their clients rarely involve Hubstaff administrators, who let the parties involved work things out on their own.
  • User-friendly website design helps employers easily add other team members to their company profile, as well as communicate, interview, and hire freelancers.
  • It’s possible to filter freelancer profiles by keywords or phrases, expertise, availability, experience, and country of residence.

Cons

  • Finding consistent work can be challenging due to the small user population.
  • Sparse help and input from Hubstaff Talent administrators can sometimes lead to unresolved disputes.
  • No tests or screening process requirements make it hard to verify a worker’s credentials.
  • No minimum hourly fees.
  • Bad work quality from freelancers living in some of the more developing countries who accept assignments at well below-market prices.

Upwork is without a doubt the leader in the remote workplace field. This company has a wealth of tools available for both freelancers and businesses, and it’s really paved the way for companies like Hubstaff to follow. Here are some of the pros and cons you’ll find at Upwork.

Pros

Pros

  • Upwork’s tests and verifications are a super helpful method to show and verify customer service management, grammar, coding, design, and whatever other skills Upwork has tests for.
  • No shortage of job listings or freelancers available thanks to Upwork’s large user and client population.
  • Upwork has a rating system for freelancers that provides quality information on how well they performed with any particular job.
  • The Upwork app for freelancers keeps time-tracking information, bills freelancer clients on a weekly basis, and ensures you’re paid automatically.
  • Highly structured website design and features, as well as, a fantastic 24-hour customer support system developed over years of experience in the remote workplace and freelance fields.
  • Built-in tools for help with some of the simpler chores, like note-taking and sorting. There’s also an option to use third-party services and software if your situation calls for a more wide-ranging amount of remote workplace management tools.

Cons

  • Upwork’s messaging and payment systems can be a tad buggy and slow on occasion, which makes communication between clients and workers time-consuming and annoying.
  • The fees levied on both the client and freelancer can be significant.
  • The job posting can sometimes turn into a job itself since certain freelancers will mass-apply to any and every job, whether they’re qualified or not. This leads to a large number of applications for certain posts, turning the normally quick task of sorting through the responses into a bit of a pain.
  • Every month nearly 100,000 new jobs are added. This can be problematic for several reasons. The volume makes it difficult to sort through, it is easy to overlook important information, and you may miss out on some of the best applicants.

Conclusion

The battle between Upwork and Hubstaff Talent, in our honest opinion, was never a fair fight. The sheer number of users, clients, tools, experience, support, and credibility are all in Upwork’s favor. However, there is certain to be a rematch in the future, and Hubstaff has a solid foundation to build upon. The no-cost nature of its platform and its time tracking and remote workplace management tools are undoubtedly some of the most popular in the industry. Upwork is the best and biggest name right now in the freelance world, but as you can see, Hubstaff Talent and other smaller companies are not going away. If they can continue to grow, they’ll be a harder opponent next time these two meet for battle.

Hopefully, this article has provided you with enough information to help you form your own opinion of both Upwork and Hubstaff. Having a solid grasp on how these types of platforms operate is important because many people, including professional job market researchers, tend to agree that working from home either part-time or full-time is going to be the new workplace model of the future.

Evidence of a possible dramatic shift in how and where we go to work can be seen in a survey of government and corporate workers that was done recently. It reported that more than half of the people said they would prefer to work from home at least three days a week even after the pandemic is over. The same survey also noted that nearly a third of those taking part in the questionnaire said they would like to work remotely full time.

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