New oDesk Terminology

July 1, 2010 by

To help new visitors better understand what oDesk is all about and clarify important concepts to all oDesk users, we've updated a few of our more commonly used words. Read Full Article

New design for job posts

June 24, 2010 by

The next time you look for a job or post a new job, check out the new job description page.  Our designers have been hard at work revamping this page.  They’ve cleaned it up, given it a fresh new look, and highlighted the key information you need.  For providers, it’s now easier to determine whether a particular job is a good fit for you.  For buyers, you can now use this page to easily update your open job posts.    For providers: Right up top – see the job description, skills required and preferred qualifications Check the job status, including when the buyer last viewed the job, # of applicants and # interviewing Quickly see if you’ve already applied to the job Review the buyer’s work history and other open jobs For buyers, you can now use this job description page to manage your open jobs posts – make edits, repost, make the job private to stop receiving applications, or close the job once it’s filled.  Keep in mind, to manage active assignments, you should go to the assignment detail page.   Let us know what you think of these changes in our community forum. Read Full Article

Find providers fast & changes to job application quotas

June 17, 2010 by

This week we have two enhancements to the oDesk service to tell you about.  Both of these changes will create a speedier site –  something many of our users have been asking for! Faster, more interactive provider search results We’ve made looking for providers easier and faster, helping buyers find the talent they need and helping providers get hired. First, provider search results have a great new look.  A cleaner design highlights the information buyers need to easily review their search results.  Also: Faster page loads and more interactive filters to quickly narrow search results. Easier navigation to jump to any page in your search results. Provider search listings will look different and we know change can be jarring.  But, we’re confident these changes will make it easier for buyers to find providers.  We are always working to improve the experience for all of our users.  Check out the new provider search results now. If you have feedback on these changes, we’d love to hear it!  Visit our Community Forum. Job application quotas to refresh twice daily Starting today, providers will see a change in how often job application quotas are increased. Currently, when one of your job applications becomes inactive (you are hired, or your application expires, is withdrawn or is rejected), your quota is increased immediately.  This real-time updating encourages job application spamming and is causing our systems to run very slowly.  To increase system speed for all users, and reduce the amount of job spamming, increases to your quota will now occur twice per day. This means that when one of your job applications becomes inactive, it may take up to 12 hours before you see your quota increase. Note, none of the rules regarding your quota change. For more information, see the … Read Full Article

Quality Health Insurance for Contractors, Job Seekers and Entrepreneurs

June 14, 2010 by

Being an independent contractor comes with a lot of benefits, including the freedom to work when and where you want.  Until now, those benefits didn’t usually include affordable health insurance options. But, that all changes today.  oDesk is now making health insurance available to all of our U.S.-based users. On behalf of our members, we have negotiated pricing, plan offerings and a streamlined approval process that outstrip other plans generally available to individuals. “By providing access to health coverage options, we’re lowering a key barrier faced by many people that aspire to the freelance lifestyle, and enabling them to focus on building successful careers.”  – Gary Swart, oDesk CEO There are 3 types of plans available. For more details see: Wellness plan – day-to-day health care plan with guaranteed issuance, low deductible and up to an annual maximum benefit of $20,000 including hospitalization. Catastrophic plan – coverage for major medical care, including hospitalization with an annual maximum benefit of $1 Million Comprehensive plan – combine the Wellness and Catastrophic plans to get comprehensive coverage. Life insurance with critical illness coverage is also available with no physical exam as an additional option on any of the 3 offered plans. oDesk is committed to supporting both companies and individuals in the new, emerging “contract economy”.  Access to affordable, quality health insurance is an important ingredient to building successful, long-term contract careers, and we’re proud to be taking the lead in offering these types of benefits options to our users. You can read about the plans at or you can call 888-895-2440 to speak directly with a benefits consultant (available 8am to 6pm PDT). Got feedback for us on the plans? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, or share them with our Community! … Read Full Article

New and Improved Reports Make Managing Work Easier

June 9, 2010 by

Buyers, providers and staffing managers now have access to our new suite of reports that make managing your work life easier.   We’ve added the most requested reports, made them easier to read, provided both summary and detailed views, and made it possible to select the specific date range you need. For Buyers: Customized reports to track the providers, teams and time periods you choose Easy to read dashboards with summaries by provider, task or memo Linked reports allow you to drill down into individual work diaries For Providers: Easier to read weekly timesheet showing hours by buyer Detailed report listing daily hours and memos for any time period you choose Still Available – Time Analyze – a configurable report to track hours or earnings For Affiliate Managers: Easier to read reports with summary and detailed views Weekly timesheets to track total time and earnings by provider or buyer Detailed reports showing work completed by memo for any time period you choose Check out the Reports Center today to find out how much easier it can be to manage your work! Have feedback about the new reports? Please go to the Community Forum to leave your comments. Read Full Article

A Better Way to Manage your Job Applications

May 26, 2010 by

Applying and interviewing for jobs just got faster and easier under the new “Job Applications.” No more hunting for interview threads! Your communications with the buyer are now embedded in the new Job Application page. Reply to buyers, ask questions and view the job description all in one place. Easily manage your job applications. Quickly reply to, decline or ignore invitations to interview. Easily propose a different rate and page through applications. Declutter your job application list. Archive applications that you’re done with, and find all your past applications (declined, withdrawn, hired) in the “Archived” tab. More responsive interface. We’ve fine-tuned it for faster performance. This is just the beginning.  Look out for even more improvements over the next couple of months.  In the meantime, if you have feedback or suggestions regarding the new Job Applications, please share them in the community forum.   … Read Full Article

Live Chat Support 24/7

May 13, 2010 by

oDesk Customer Service’s live chat support is now available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Chat has quickly become the support option of choice for many oDesk users and we hope the expanded coverage will make it even more convenient for users around the globe! To contact oDesk, please visit, select a topic, and choose Create a Support Ticket or Live Chat. We also continue to offer a Help Center full of informative articles and community forum where you can seek the advice of fellow oDesk members. If you have comments or suggestions, please share them in the community forum. Read Full Article

Games and Apps Drive Android and C++ Demand

April 21, 2010 by

The monthly oDesk Online Jobs Report is a great chance to take a look at where the demand for skills are and - more importantly - where they are headed. Following the trends in demand for online work can help you make sure you're harnessing the right skills to secure work in the future, and help you command top-dollar for your in-demand skillset. Read Full Article

Has oDesk Changed Your Life?

April 16, 2010 by

  oDesk lets hundreds of thousands of talented providers find the work they want to do, but sometimes when we’re looking at the oConomy’s satellite perspective (almost $150 million earned via oDesk!) on our vibrant marketplace, we wonder about the individual stories, not just the numbers. Nearly every month, we run across a blogger talking about finding financial independence through oDesk, and we’ve talked to remote providers whose oDesk work opened up a world of travel opportunities, or helped them pay their way through college. But we know there are more stories out there, and we want to hear, and celebrate, them. Have you launched a new career through oDesk? Overcome the challenges of a lousy job market in your area, family needs or a disability? Made extra money to meet a financial goal, or just break the shackles of that padded cubicle? Let us know in the comments below. Tell us where in the world you live, what kind of work you do, and what being an online provider has meant to you. Keep it short, but be sure to tell us how you changed your life with oDesk. Buyers, don’t feel left out — we’re asking you the same in this post! … Read Full Article

Has oDesk Changed Your Business?

April 16, 2010 by

  We know that oDesk is changing how the world works, but how is it changing your business? First-time entrepreneurs tell us how they got their dream company launched on a very tight budget, and how they expanded beyond the limits of time zone and local talent, but what’s your story? So c’mon oDesk buyers, tell us how you’ve used oDesk expand your business — or transform you life, for that matter. You could have added a range of services to your business, launched a new venture while still holding down a day job, stretched your budget or found the right talent when the local market let you down. Tell us your story in the comments below. Where are you, what do you do, and how have you used oDesk to do it better? Providers, don’t feel left out — we’re asking you the same in this post! … Read Full Article

Your New Home on oDesk

April 14, 2010 by

The next time you log into your oDesk account, take a look around your new user Home. Here you’ll find an overview of your work life on oDesk, including modules for Notifications, My Teams, Payments, My Job Applications (for providers), and My Job Openings (for buyers). Each module also provides links to dig deeper into the information presented. Look familiar? The Dashboard we introduced a few weeks ago has graduated from beta to become your new user Home. We’ve made a few tweaks from the beta based on user input and we added modules to make the page more useful to both providers and buyers. The new user Home is now the default landing page whenever you log in. Once you’re logged in, whenever you want to return there from anywhere in the site, just click the oDesk logo. (We’ve made some other changes to the site navigation as well – you can read more about the navigation changes here.) Questions? Comments? Suggestions for new Dashboard modules? Let us know how we can make your user Home more useful! STAR TREK and related marks are trademarks of CBS Studios Inc. oDesk is not affiliated with CBS Studios, Inc. nor is “James Kirk” an actual oDesk user. There are not currently any positions open on oDesk involving “photon torpedo retargeting” or “Klingon-to-English translation”. Read Full Article

oDesk Site Navigation Update

April 14, 2010 by

oDesk is constantly evolving as a marketplace, community, and tool that changes how the world works. Today, we took steps toward creating a more streamlined site navigation system. The changes are subtle, visible only to users who are signed in, but we'd like to share some of the more noticeable differences... Read Full Article

oDesk Partners with Startup Weekend

April 5, 2010 by

Last weekend we attended another Startup Weekend in beautiful Miami, FL, and again came away excited to have been a part of such an innovative and exciting event. The intense, three-day event was jam-packed with brainstorming exciting ideas and executing on them to form multiple brand new startup businesses in just one weekend! We love to participate in these events, because we’re all about helping startups build online teams from all over the globe and enabling them to work together as if they were in the same office. We helped each of the startup weekend teams get started on oDesk and showed them how they can do more with less by finding software programmers, web designers, virtual assistants and other professionals on-demand. We’re thrilled to announce that oDesk is partnering with Startup Weekend nationwide, and will play an important role in the events they organize across the country and around the world. Have an idea for a startup but not sure how to make it happen? We encourage you to attend an upcoming Startup Weekend in your area and join with other like-minded individuals to see what amazing things you can accomplish. And don’t forget, oDesk will be there to help you every step of the way! … Read Full Article

SXSW, oDesk and YOU!

March 8, 2010 by

Going to SXSW this year? Party in style with oDesk and the other members of the Small Business Web! Come for food, drinks, and great networking with hundreds of small businesses and web application vendors just like yourself. When: 4-7pm Saturday, March 13 Where: The Pure Volume House at 504 Trinity St, Austin, TX. Who: The Small Business Web– we connect web apps to help small businesses bloom and grow! You must sign up here for the party. (Austin law requires us to have a guest list) _____ The Future of Work at SXSWi oDeskCEO Gary Swart (@garyswart), will also be presenting on the panel “What Coworking Tells Us About the Future of Work” on Monday, March 15, along with Clay Spinuzzi (professor at University of Austin), Liz Elam (of Link Coworking), and Drew Jones ( from Shift Workspace) Are you heading to SXSW? Let us know – we can’t wait to see you all there! … Read Full Article

The oDesk Dashboard – where all your oDesk stuff lives

March 2, 2010 by

The oDesk Dashboard is a new page designed to be “home” for all oDesk users. It shows, at a glance, a snapshot of your entire oDesk account, with links to key pages like the team room, your financial account, your open jobs, and more. The initial includes the all-new Notifications, My Teams, Payments, My Job Openings (for buyers only), and the oDesk Learning Center. Next up is a “My Provider Activity” module, which is in development now. Every oDesk user can find their dashboard at What else would you like to see as part of your dashboard? What’s missing or needs work? Share your thoughts in the feedback forum. Read Full Article

Buzzworthy! (Feb 2010)

February 25, 2010 by

Checking out the blog buzz, it seems oDesk is doing well in taste tests. First, buyer Simon Bunker compares our marketplace to a competitor and declares we’re “now the site of choice for all my outsourcing activity.” Then for the provider perspective, the remote-work gurus at provide “Five Reasons Why oDesk Tops Other Freelance Sites.” Network Solutions blogger Steve Fisher talks about using oDesk with your iPhone, and a provider writing as “Sufidreamer” offers his fourth in-depth post about getting started on oDesk, this time focusing on cover letters and interviews. If you’re tired of reading websites, here are a couple of YouTube videos you can watch: Camitta Davis offers a video intro to becoming an oDesk provider, and “MrWebMarketing” asks, “Is Outsourcing Just a Fad?” Watch and learn, folks — and remember to send us your links when you talk about oDesk online. For a few lucky winners each month, there’s a free T-shirt in it. Over at the developing, Rikki John De Castro continues to create an independent resource for oDesk providers. Recently he offered a friend advice on dealing with a difficult buyer who kept demanding broad revisions on a fixed-priced project (check it out just for the cartoon about a web design project gone awry), and he finished January by celebrating his first $1,000 in earnings through oDesk. Congratulations, Rikki! … Read Full Article

Introducing Faceted Provider Search

February 24, 2010 by

Finding just the right oDesk providers got easier! We’ve unveiled a new advanced search box for Provider search to let you drill down into your search and find candidates who match more specific criteria. You can choose multiple categories, locations, and more. We have a lot more improvements planned for provider search, and we’d love to hear your feedback and feature requests. Read Full Article

Applying to a job just got a little easier

February 20, 2010 by

In response to provider feedback, we have redesigned the “Apply to Job” form to make it easier to send just the right application. All-new styling brings this form in line with our design direction and sets the stage for future updates and additions. Set your rate right in-line instead of after you submit the application; by default you enter your own pay rate, but you can also set the buyer charge rate (including oDesk fees) by clicking on it. Job qualification matching is smarter, too – if you don’t meet all of the buyer’s preferred qualifications, we tell you which ones We know there are plenty more opportunities to make this page better. Please speak up if there’s something you’d like added or changed. We are listening! … Read Full Article

And the Winner Is…

February 19, 2010 by

Thank you all for your fantastic entries in yesterday’s contest! Hearing about your oDesk milestones and successes was nothing short of inspiring. Some of our favorite entries were: #oWin #oDesk I’m finishing up another web design/development job today. Its great to work from home! oDesk Rocks! – @getterdonegurus made my first major withdrawal from @odesk on the day of my wedding last January 30! #oWin #oDesk – @alexis0fDreams Milestone: Was sitting at home this week and got an email from a former client who wanted more work from me. #oWin #oDesk – @dcrwrites Today I could die from an excess of work #odesk #oWin #happy – @kovalevd #odesk has catupulted my copywriting career, over 13 assignments I’m psyched!! – @Ironsunflower Working on overdrive to complete the latest project for my oDesk client for whom I have been working for the last year! #oWin – @sampathd Didnt notice that I have 3345 hrs in Odesk since August 2008,amazing how Odesk rocked my world and my bank acct #oWin #oDesk – @kmarvs23 And the winner – by random drawing – is….. Congratulations, @FoodTravelDiva! And thanks again to everyone who shared their amazing milestones – please keep us updated on your successes, we love to hear about how you are changing how the world works! Be sure to follow @oDesk on Twitter for the latest information on job and hiring trends, tips on successful remote work and more chances to win! … Read Full Article

#oDesk Twitter Contest – Your Odesk Milestones

February 18, 2010 by

It’s Thursday, and tweople are talking. What are they talking about? Your oDesk Milestones! They are talking, and YOU might be winning. What could you win? A $50 Amazon gift card and an oDesk t-shirt! Here’s the deal: Tweet about your oDesk Milestones. Passed a personal best for number of hours? Reached a thousand hours in record time? Been active on oDesk for ages now? Made some big $$ through oDesk? Share it! Add the hashtags: #oWin AND #oDesk Tweet (or re-tweet) by 11:59pm PT tonight. Every tweet (or re-tweet) is a new entry. Re-tweets count as entries for the original twitterer (so, if ten of your friends RT your original oDesk Milestone tweet, that’s ten entries for YOU!) Winner will be drawn at random for a $50 Amazon gift card and an oDesk t-shirt! Winner announcement will be made at 9:30am PT, Friday, February 19, 2010. @iamdjbrixx, @abhishekdesai, @AishaDansalRN and @tjlytle already have one entry each for kicking us off with their tweets this morning – how many entries will YOU have today? … Read Full Article