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Anyone getting annoyed by this: I'd like to personally invite you to apply to my job...

It seems there is some new trend of employers sending out spam interview requests with the message:

"Hello!

I'd like to personally invite you to apply to my job. Please review the job post and apply if you're available."

Am I the only one who thinks this is the beginning of a bad trend on oDesk? I keep getting spammed for jobs that are way out of my skill range and I get the least % of replies from clients who job search this way as well, like they are spamming so many people they don't even have time to look through all the applications.

Vote Result

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Score: 6.7, Votes: 6
I've also been receiving

I've also been receiving these. I think it's incredibly rude to request that contractors go in search of a generic job post without, at the very least, a scan through their profile. What happened to good old fashioned etiquette? I did go and look at one of the posts I was directed toward and it had absolutely no information other than that a feature was needed and that potential contractors should offer ideas about what the topic should be. Huh? I have a collection of articles I've not yet submitted but I wasn't about to give them all the angles I'd worked so hard on without a narrowed down idea of what was required. I gave a polite response requesting a little more information about their target audience and the publication their feature was intended for so that I could tell them if I was a good fit for the task. I have not received a response--I think it's been two weeks now. I suspect most of these cut and paste requests will go in a similar way.

With the Greatest Respect Kirsten ...

You have had 3 jobs. I have had 241. I would not presume to throw my toys around the way you do. I like the approach you mention and have secured several jobs that have been fully paid for at my full rate that way. What is your point please? Must we all dance to your tune? And employers and Odesk too? Now let me guess. Which barb will you throw first? My age or your intellectual superiority? Richard

Sheesh, Richard. What got

Sheesh, Richard. What got your goat?

Please don't jump to assumptions about people. There is an entire world outside oDesk and I have been freelancing and publishing for more than a decade.

I have no wish to throw either age or intellect at you. I don't have a problem with you. What I would like is to be able to express my opinions without nasty responses that jump to unsubstantiated conclusions.

Looks like the scrooge

Richard Farrell wrote:
You have had 3 jobs. I have had 241. I would not presume to throw my toys around the way you do. I like the approach you mention and have secured several jobs that have been fully paid for at my full rate that way. What is your point please? Must we all dance to your tune? And employers and Odesk too? Now let me guess. Which barb will you throw first? My age or your intellectual superiority? Richard

Just because you are miserable, doesn't mean you need to spread it to everyone else. I think you should take some advice from Kirsten and explore the world outside of oDesk lol

client-friendly : )

Lucas Shepherd wrote:
like they are spamming so many people they don't even have time to look through all the applications.

I received one that had 294 applicants, all of them invited by the client... Talk about being selective.

/// Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it's the courage to continue that counts.

On a plus side..

at least, they are polite enough to say 'Please..' Smile

I have received quite a few of these that made me think if these clients work for the same team or maybe, they have the same person sending out this message for them.

Spamming is a violation. I

Spamming is a violation. I hope oDesk seriously crackdowns on such clients. If contractors are penalized for making cover letters not unique to the posted job, why can't clients be suspended or banned for sending invitations not in accordance to the contractor's profile?

*cracks down sorry, it was an

*cracks down

sorry, it was an eyesore, i just had to.

anyway, i believe the OP isn't aware that it's a "new default message for invitations", which is exactly what Bojana noticed a week ago. maybe someone should have pointed him out to that thread. i know, it's spammy, but it's oDesk's fault for bringing it in.

"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain." - Maya Angelou
Try harder, or care less.

That makes sense

That makes sense why it started happening all of a sudden, thanks for the link and info!

I doubt it, Francisco, considering oDesk MADE that feature

Francisco F. wrote:
Spamming is a violation. I hope oDesk seriously crackdowns on such clients. If contractors are penalized for making cover letters not unique to the posted job, why can't clients be suspended or banned for sending invitations not in accordance to the contractor's profile?

oDesk made that feature a couple of weeks ago. When a client invites a contractor for a contract that is the default text that appears.

The client did not write it.

I would hazard a guess that most clients think it is the correct way to send out invitations.

I just made a private job invitation today

I just made a private job invitation today and what I see is that the message to the contractor is automatically filled in with this sentence. I normally write a detailed specific message as I usually have a real specific set of needs but apparently not everyone does this.

Would have been nice for oDesk to inform contractors

Thanks for letting us know oDesk! I have been getting multiple job invitations with this sentence and I thought it was so weird so they must be spam. I even sent a support ticket to oDesk asking them to investigate the issue, and no one bothered to tell me this was the default option for job invitations now. That makes a lot more sense!

Hi everyone, Thanks for the

Hi everyone,

Thanks for the feedback. Your concerns regarding this feature have been forwarded to the product team.

oDesk Forum Moderator

Always reach for the skies, for even if you fall, you'll still be on the top of the world...

Thanks

More than appreciated, thank you!!

I'm enraged

I received this message 3 times, the first time it was by a client who knew that my style is what she was looking for, it was a proper interview and she gave me the job and our collaboration is pefect so far. We are both pleased with each others work behavior.

The second time they asked for free samples so I totally ignored them, I never waste time for free.

And just a few hours ago I received an invitation again about a children's book of 13 pages where the total budget was $80 (which means each illustration would cost less than $10!!!!) although in my contractor profile it's clearly stated that I charge $25/hour. So in my cover letter I asked if the $80 is for the whole book and she confirmed. I wasted my time to write a proper cover letter and I'm still angry.

Why would you write a cover

Why would you write a cover letter if you were already invited? The invitation usually means that the client is already interested and has seen your samples and your overview - hence the only thing that's left to be discussed is the job in question and the terms (and you can usually save some time here - you can just check the job post & see if the terms are acceptable/negotiable). Then, only if those look good (budget/deadline), and you're interested + you have questions - you ask them. However, asking few clarifying questions can hardly be compared to writing a full cover letter.

One minute research can tell you whether you should invest time in detailed response or not. While I'm also not happy with the template, it's up to us, contractors, to manage our time and effort.

/// Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it's the courage to continue that counts.

Well Said

Well said. In order to even have a chance on the new spam invites, you really have no other choice than to write a detailed cover letter if you want it to be read, the people spending money like seeing all of us little contractors go strange for their change. But I'm not here to dance for them because they want to drop money on a pretty little website. I am here to make a living and if you cannot send a professional invitation request, why in the world would I write a nice cover letter back?

As of right now, I just disregard every job invite I get with that cookie-cutter message, I feel that feature needs to be deprecated sooner rather than later, but if an employer is going to send out spam invites because they are price hunting or something, that is probably not someone I want to work for anyways.

A sincere thanks goes out to all of the employers who take our work seriously, thank you!!

Bojana that's not realistic

when you're interested in the job description but are not sure of all the details (like when you want to confirm that the est. budget is $80 for the whole book of the client means something else) in order for the client to get your attention and therefore answer your questions with such a great competition, you can't just write a rough empty message with just the questions. It's not professional and shows that you're rushing and you're in a hurry. We should not waste any time to vague, unclear or suspicious job postings, however if we don't put a little effort we may lose a good opportunity.

Cover letters are for selling

Cover letters are for selling yourself and when you are applying for a job. When you're invited, the client is already interested. Accepting a client's invite doesn't mean you're going to forego any professionalism. You are already on the interview phase so that's when you ask clarifying questions.

The invite asks if you're interested. If you're not, then you decline or ignore it. It's up to you if you're going to apply for a job or not, and accept an invite or not.

I'm going to respectfully disagree.

Cherry M. wrote:
Cover letters are for selling yourself and when you are applying for a job. When you're invited, the client is already interested. Accepting a client's invite doesn't mean you're going to forego any professionalism. You are already on the interview phase so that's when you ask clarifying questions.

The invite asks if you're interested. If you're not, then you decline or ignore it. It's up to you if you're going to apply for a job or not, and accept an invite or not.

Cover letters are for getting the client interested enough to contact you.

The real selling comes in the interview phase when you discuss the project and show the prospective client that you can do the job. Or you don't -- if the job is not something you want to do.

Hi Cate,

I agree with you there. Smile I used selling in the context of cover letters and the previous post. Yes, I believe selling is part of the overall process, even until the last part - for repeat business, and all.

Good point

Cherry M. wrote:
Cover letters are for selling yourself and when you are applying for a job. When you're invited, the client is already interested. Accepting a client's invite doesn't mean you're going to forego any professionalism. You are already on the interview phase so that's when you ask clarifying questions.

The invite asks if you're interested. If you're not, then you decline or ignore it. It's up to you if you're going to apply for a job or not, and accept an invite or not.

I spend an hour or two researching the company, looking at the specs, and writing a detailed description of my approach to solve their problem. I do this whether they invited me or not. If I receive an invite that is not very descriptive, I unconsciously assume that they are not going to be detailed or that they sent a cookie cutter invite out to a lot of people. I would rather just get an email with an invite with no message than a spammy one.

Even though you have already been invited, you still have to sell yourself. Asking questions is one way of doing it, but a well-formed response to an invitation will get you the job almost every time. Sometimes while doing research you can come up with more ideas to sell to the employer or possibly prove you are a candidate for other positions as well.

I'm interested to see what solution oDesk comes up with. I realize that I added too many details to my suggestion in my other post. I just wanted to illustrate a point that employers ( especially first timers ) need to be guided through the process as much as possible. Otherwise they could get burned and flee the marketplace which is not good for anyone.

I'm glad that you actually take the time to ask questions. I've had to hire several contractors and the caliber of most cover letters/responses are weak at best. It's obvious that they did not spend time to understand the job. Hiring quality help is a difficult process. Taking the extra time to be detailed saves a lot of time in the long run.

Best regards,
Daniel

Who said that you should

Who said that you should forget professional approach and just shoot the questions on a "rough empty message"? You can be totally professional and still write a tidy, concise text, voicing all your questions and sparing the client some time by making it clear what you've understood and what you need to clarify. I do that in under 10 minutes. Well thought-out questions are enough of a sign that you know what you're doing and that you can help.

My point was not that you should just send a bullet list without even signing it; my point was that when you're invited, you can skip the hardest part of the initial communication - having the client notice your 2-3 lines of text that put you ahead of the competition. Whatever questions you have over a job post, they should not take as much time as a detailed cover letter.

/// Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it's the courage to continue that counts.

Going to lead to bigger problems...

I have been getting these invitations and completely ignoring them. I think in the past few days I've gotten about 20 invitations that say very little more than "I'd like to personally invite you to apply to my job. Please review the job post and apply if you're available."

I figured that they were spam or a suggested message, so I have been ignoring them. One of them invited a few hundred people so I marked it as spam. I've also been marking anyone asking for work outside of oDesk as spam.

This isn't good for contractors OR employers. The default message should be a placeholder template, not something that makes them sound spammy. Something like:

===============================
Overview / Summary:
We are looking to...

Required / Suggested Skills:
* Skill 1 ( min years exp+ )
* Skill 2 ( min years exp+ )

Project Requirement / Details:
Describe in detail what is required to fill the duties of the contract.

Special Instructions / Notes:
File formats, delivery method, etc...
===============================

Right now, the biggest problem with contracting on oDesk is clients giving too little information for the project. This leads to poor estimates, and extra revisions. The project takes longer, is more confusing, and is overly stressful. This new default message is a huge problem because it suggests to the employer to take the lazy route which could result in a new oDesk employer getting burned and leaving the marketplace permanently.

I'm going to continue ignoring these requests because they lack descriptive information of the project. I'm not going to spend my time squeezing the information out of an employer when I don't know anything about the project. I usually spend more than an hour writing my initial message to employers so I can't really afford to waste time on these requests.

At the same time, oDesk needs to keep the barriers of entry for new employers very minimal. I would suggest a multi-step wizard option to generate a really good job post.

Best regards,
Daniel

Not everthing comes plated

Catch a wake-up call. Nobody owes you a free lunch. Stop whinging and get on with your life!! BTW if you look above the message you will see the job description ...

Who's asking for a free

Who's asking for a free lunch?

Employers should be given some direction and what oDesk has in place is not good. Employers should take time when creating a job post, so that they are matched with a good contractor.

You should stop "whinging" and get on with your life. You're not adding any value to the thread. Seriously dude...

Seriously Daniel ..

I've been around a few more blocks if you care to check. There are only two types of Odeskers. Those who moan and those who get on with making money. Why not cross over to the other side?

HAVE A VOICE MAN

...so says the troll.

I've been doing this LONG before oDesk lol, so what?

I bet moaning has gotten you features that you really like. Some of us actually would like to make a difference in a system we care about.

Try looking at the big picture for once instead of just the next payday, there's always money to be made.

Who's piddled on your parade today?

Richard Farrell wrote:
I've been around a few more blocks if you care to check. There are only two types of Odeskers. Those who moan and those who get on with making money. Why not cross over to the other side?

This has nothing to do with moaning. Contractors get reported and sanctioned for sending out "cut and paste" applications. And in the same breath oDesk gives clients a "cut and paste template" to contact contractors with?

Some of us make money, work hard on oDesk *AND* make suggestions. This "template" approach has been met with uniform disapproval so far (from the contractors who have commented.)

What is wrong with voicing an opinion, Richard?

i agree that some posts are

i agree that some posts are lacking in information; however, i am taking into consideration that this doesn't have the advantage of the b&m's HR dept, which thoughtfully writes out job descriptions.

some clients don't even have the specifics in mind as to what they really want and how it should be done. i take that as an opportunity instead, and ask questions that would gear the client in the right direction. it's also my one way of showing that i am capable in my niche.

Agreed

I completely agree with you. This is how I conduct a lot of my responses to invitations. It shows them you know what you're talking about and creates a thorough plan for the project.

Unfortunately, every time I reply to these cookie cutter jobs, my questions go unnoticed or unanswered, which is what prompted me to bring it up. I had no idea this was some new feature they added in for employers. The funny thing is, I think this hurts employers more than it does us contractors, because some of the best people are going to just ignore the invite completely.

It seems to me, the only people really benefiting are price hunters trying to get the cheapest labor they can, which is why a lot of the posts from these spam invites are lacking, a lot of them just want quotes...and they clearly say that in the ad.

It also allows employers (seen more than a few duplicate job posts) open up multiple job posts for same job and get a ridiculous amount of responses just for quoting a job. But the funny thing is...again...how are we suppose to accurately quote a job without proper information?

So a lacking job post is definitely OKAY, but a lacking job post in the hands of a spam employer is kinda lame.

Exactly!

Lucas Shepherd wrote:
I completely agree with you. This is how I conduct a lot of my responses to invitations. It shows them you know what you're talking about and creates a thorough plan for the project.

Unfortunately, every time I reply to these cookie cutter jobs, my questions go unnoticed or unanswered, which is what prompted me to bring it up. I had no idea this was some new feature they added in for employers. The funny thing is, I think this hurts employers more than it does us contractors, because some of the best people are going to just ignore the invite completely.

It seems to me, the only people really benefiting are price hunters trying to get the cheapest labor they can, which is why a lot of the posts from these spam invites are lacking, a lot of them just want quotes...and they clearly say that in the ad.

It also allows employers (seen more than a few duplicate job posts) open up multiple job posts for same job and get a ridiculous amount of responses just for quoting a job. But the funny thing is...again...how are we suppose to accurately quote a job without proper information?

So a lacking job post is definitely OKAY, but a lacking job post in the hands of a spam employer is kinda lame.

Exactly! It's not really a problem for me as a contractor. I'm concerned primarily for the employers and the possibility of loss in the oDesk economy.

Well, to be honest, I didn't

Well, to be honest, I didn't really notice the template until it was brought up by Bojana in another thread. I'm used to templates because I worked for a financial institution, so most communications are guided by templates approved by the legal dept.

Anyway, this is an interesting discussion and I'm also curious as to what oDesk is going to do about the feedback.

Daniel, yes, your first post has too many info. Laughing out loud It got me thinking, if I need a website put up, how am I going to attack the job posting when I know absolutely nothing about it? Sure, the wiser course of action is to do preliminary research, but anything too technical is beyond me. Wink

Oh damn....I thought those

Oh damn....I thought those were all spam, I just ignore them and deleted the offers. I think there were more than 10 of them.

So sad, so sad....

Invitation leads to SPAM

I am employer and have at times invited workers to look at my job postings. The reason is that I search for a skill am looking for first and then review the profile of workers that have the skill. Some workers even put samples of their past jobs/project in their profiles. When I see that I send an invite to some contractors because if they already know what I wanted to do why would I waste time shifting through 50 profiles.

The unfortunate thing that happens to job posts where I invite people to participate is that some workers thinks these are SPAM. So they notify oDesk support and oDesk not being tolerant or not understanding the reall issue suspends my account!

You see some of us are really just honest employers that invite the right worker with right skills to job we posted. In the process we accumulate unnecessary suspensions.

Hope oDesk staff reads this thread.

/LG

are you a client who makes

are you a client who makes use of the default invitation message? if so, that may be the reason your job posts are being reported as spam. as you can see, not everyone is aware that oDesk introduced this feature recently. most of us are used to personalized messages, the same way that clients - like you - are more receptive to personalized cover letters.

"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain." - Maya Angelou
Try harder, or care less.

This is probably a real person who annoys for some cheap means

I would like to contribute to it and tell you this is probably a spam message by real persons for whatever purpose.
I have noticed it after one or two interactions with the person he redirects us to a website. Then after that, he not responds. May be a cheap trick to gain traffic to their website (funny)
I am very much happy when I see invitation to job interview. I cannot trust a client now the way i trusted earlier.
**

All not responded to me and its going on like this after one or two days.
My advice is that If you are realistic, client won't offer you a hire just because he is impressed with your profile. Before communication, dont ever trust any client.

For spammers : don't play with anybody's careers for your cheap tricks.

*"Removed by admin"

There is a flaw with this...

I have received 3 or 4 invitations lately from clients with the same (or very similar) message, asking me to apply to their job. My frustration is that when you click on the link to go back to the original job listing, the apply button is grayed out so there is no way to technically apply anyway after you receive the invitation. If this is a canned message that odesk has added which allows clients to use, then it puts us in a catch-22. I have responded to these invitations using the 'yes, accept interview' button but have not received a response from any of those clients.

I hope that an odesk forum moderator will chime in on this.

Ronnie