March 5, 2013 | By | Reply More
  • oDesk is claimed to be the largest and fastest growing online workspace for both clients (employers) and contractors (freelancers). It’s been founded in 2003 and ever since then it has been operated as a pioneer and leader of the sector. Unlike the majority of the other sites in this sector, oDesk is widely used by contractors and employers from all around the world.


  • PROs for Translators :
    • High number of categories to work for, and apply for
    • High number of application number quota ( weekly 15 applications )
    • Quota limit increases when bid is rejected or ID verified by oDesk
    • Payments are guaranteed in hourly jobs
    • 7/24 Online and powerful help-desk support
    • Immediate withdrawal of the money in the balance
    • Free tests
    • Free mediation service in dispute cases
    • Powerful Paypal integration
    • Feedbacks can be changed after initially leaving


  • CONs :
    • Payments are NOT guaranteed in fixed-price jobs
    • 3 weeks delay in payments of fixed-price jobs (despite employer’s payment being received)
    • 3 days delay in fixed-price jobs (despite employer’s payment being received)
    • Contractors desktops can be seen by other contractors
    • Too low bidding prices (starting from $0.01 / per hour!)
    • Management being mostly in employers’ side
    • Eventual an ID-verification is obligatory! Your confidential info is mandatorily required by oDesk.
    • Unable to permanently delete an oDesk contractor profile – increasing the total number of contractors anyway
    • $1 dollar payment commission taken at every withdrawal
    • Commission is paid by contractors at cancelled jobs
    • Application bids cannot be edited, but can be withdrawn and re-bid manually


Communication :

  • oDesk has a powerful 7/24 and always online helpdesk support given by another company as outsourced service. In disputes oDesk offers a free mediation service and listens to both sides equally. But generally it is more on the “paying” side than “providing” side. For instance, if a client insults or damns to a translator, oDesk is still on employers’ side. However, if a contractor tries one of those, his profile is indefinitely suspended or terminated but the profile remains.




  • oDesk has a very delaying payment system varying from 3 days to 3 weeks depending on the type of the job done. oDesk’s payment system is above average but not recommended.


Quality of the Jobs :

Although depends on the type of the job to do, oDesk has one of the lowest quality of work, the worst pessimistic and cheap-labor abusing employers. The far-eastern contractors are decreasing the prices day by day. On the other side, oDesk also has Facebook, Google and some major Fortune 500 companies in its portfolio, but again this time; in order to make contractors work for just $1 per hour.


Membership Levels / Contractor Ranking :

  • oDesk has NO “membership levels” but it has a 5-star overall ranking and a rating system out of 5.0. The ranking is not stable, it changes almost randomly to a certain extend. The calculation formula of the rating is said to be comprehensible and “almost” just, if not abused by old and rusty employers. Here again, employers rule and reign over contractors!


Profile Information :

  • oDesk has a powerful profile information page and almost like CV view. Tags are supported, ranking system works properly. Search system is always malfunctioning, inconsistent and unsettled.


Translator’s Personal Suggestion :

Although being a “average” level choice compared to some other sites, oDesk should be your must-have site among translators’ daily sites to visit and check out. There are tons of people with bad-faith here and the system-designed by the administration yet cannot prevent them to abuse others’ labor, time, efforts and money. For instance, there are many free-test asking employers, those employers can give each top-translator 1 page and make the work done all for free without paying money to neither translators nor to oDesk. And oDesk has no intention to fix this issue. Also this website is full of cheap labor abusing contractors and employers mainly from the far-east and the 3rd world countries. Qualified, certified and educated translators should beware from such clients/employers at this website.


Category: Translator Jobs

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