Upwork automation [Using others to make dollars]

Upwork is the product of a love affair between two freelancing sites: Elance, and Odesk that was given birth in 2014. This article focuses on who to get jobs from and then, who to subcontract such job to. Essentially, you are going to learn how to be a better middleman in the freelance world.

Except you are sure of yourself, maybe this site is not the best place to start off as a freelancer. Like freelancer.com, they employ an escrow system to protect buyers and sellers, and they take their fees based on your earnings. Such earning is between 5% to 20% depending on the amount of money you charge a client. The higher the money you are going to receive, the lower the percentage Upwork will charge you.

However, we shall stick to the topic of discussion which is how to get rich clients from upwork and make others do the job for you. The reason is that Upwork has much more clients with deep pocket than Fiverr or Freelancer.


The Big 4 (the rich employers)

Just like in the audit business where Deloitte, KPMG, Ernst and Young, and PwC control all the market share, the Big 4 countries in the freelancing sphere is where all the money comes from. These are the big spenders who are holding all the cash and are looking for people to work for them. Does it mean you can’t get spenders from other countries like the Arabs? Certainly not, but these are the big players. My ranking is based on the volume of work that these countries request for and the ease of doing business with citizens of these countries. In light of this, I have to give the top pick to:

  1. The Australians. They don’t bother you with so many chats; they release the money as at when due. You can almost carry-out a $1000 job for an Australian with no form of escrow, and you are quite certain that they will pay up. Thumbs up to you guys.
  2. The Americans. Canada is supposed to come second, but due to the volume of jobs that come from the Americans, they take second place. America is really a mix-bag of people, and you should expect different treatment from each client.
  3. The Canadians. They are reliable, generally trustworthy and are not shy of spending.
  4. The Brits. There isn’t much work from these guys, but they are cool people to work for.

As a prospective Boss, you need to focus as much effort on people that will work for as much on people that you are working for. Always maintain great communication and customer service with your employers. Likewise, your employees are the ground soldiers who will do all the heavy lifting, and you should understand them more.

The Small 4 (the worker bee)

There will be a lot more concentration on the small 4 in Upwork automation. The reason is that you stand a better chance of making a higher profit margin if you know how to handle the people that will make your life easier.

  1. The Pakistani “soldier ant” Collaboration (graphic design, SEO, Amazon ranking improvement)

This is a tiered system where a group of Pakistani or Indians form an alliance and work together. I happen to know at least 20 Pakistani guys in person (not online) and seeing how they look out for each other in real life; it is easier to see why they work well as a team. I appreciate the kind of work they render. They break the job into small bits and pass it on to others. To recognize freelance workers like this, they usually start their opening statement like “We are a group of dedicated freelancers…” the keyword is “we.” I know of a Russian group who do a lot of web design, and they seem to be doing pretty good. Others are also in the contents business, and they usually do pretty well and rise pretty fast as labor is divided.


  • Highly efficient
  • Faster completion time.
  • A dedicated bidder in the formation, thereby guaranteeing more jobs.
  • If one or two persons are unavailable, others can fill in.


Well, there could be issues with sharing money and infighting as some people will certainly feel they are doing more jobs and should get paid more. We can spend time analyzing this but is it really your business? Well, it isn’t. Whatever is happening among them is 9000miles away from your location and is not really your business until they fail to deliver your job which they most like won’t do anyway.

  1. The dogmatic Chinese (Mobile app, software, web development, programming)

In this freelance job, especially for those who want to become the Boss. An African, or Asian is more important to you than an American, and it is good to know just a bit about them. These are the guys who will do all the work for you after you must have been awarded the contract by the Big 4 countries. If you get a job from a Big 4 country and you sub-contract to someone in a Big 4 country, your profit margin will be cut significantly, and why do we go into this business in the first place? To make money. So, it is important to know how to communicate with your workers.

The greatest problem you will encounter while working with a Chinese employee is communication. Well, English is not their mother tongue, but they somehow want to eat from the freelancing bowl with their pair of chopsticks. So, they get someone who knows a bit of English to set up their profile, but when you chat with them, they rely on Bing translate (not google translate as it is banned in China unless you have a VPN) to communicate with you. But if you can pass that hurdle, you get to meet the coolest programmers and web designers on the market and at a cheap cost. They are eager to please, will do all manner of revisions you request and wouldn’t bother you for an extra cost.

  1. Made in Africa contents (e-books, articles, web content)

The average African faces a ton of problem in making it in the freelance world. Quoting a popular rap song, ”being a black (in the US), you have to work extra extra hard…” But being a black man in Africa is much harder. These guys are also good if you can hand pick them but usually, before employing such, it is wise to ask for previous work sample or ask them to do a quick free sample to make some assessment. Be prepared to lose some few bucks as things might not go as planned but have it at the back of our mind that you will eventually get a long-term partner who you keep pushing all those jobs to. Usually, you would not have a problem with communication as a lot of Africans can speak good English, but you should always sweep their files for grammar errors and plagiarisms. And I believe you have access to software for those if you want to be a big-time player.

  1. The Indian (software development and IT-related jobs, adobe suite, arts)

Well, the Indians are very careful about how they spend money. If you work for an Indian, he is going to milk every resource from you. I get the idea that these guys don’t give you a job unless they are absolutely sure that they can’t do it or time constraints. Except you a newbie trying to find your foot, you would want to be careful and lay down proper agreements before working for an Indian. But this article is about employing an Indian and not about working for them. If you can stamp your authority in a niche they are not very familiar with, of course, you can always get a decent cut from an Indian. But don’t concentrate on the bad; look into the future, and you will see how bright it is. Turns out that the core reason why the Indians offer so little money for their gigs especially when sub-contracting to others is because they get the jobs for a low amount as well. So, they are just trying to make ends meet. Of course, there are other reasons, but this is the pick of the bunch. What this translates to is that if you also want to access your “Boss Mode” and hire an Indian, you also get to spend lower bucks and they will work tirelessly to satisfy you. These guys are the go-to guys if you want a nice job on the cheap. I absolutely have no problems with Indians, they are cool people.

So, there you have it. The key to becoming a bus on freelancing sites like Upwork without doing anything lies in your ability to properly identify the place where all the money is coming from (Big 4) and knowing how to get the job done via the Small 4 and increase your bottom line.

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