The Most Important Upwork Metrics

The Most Important Upwork Metrics by Charles Sledge

Don’t be a fool. If I could go back that is what I would tell myself. When it comes to Upwork the Pareto Principle applies 100%, this really cannot be overstated. I have written this article so you don’t end up wasting your time (your most valuable resource) on things that do so very little to get you more jobs on Upwork. When it really comes down to it there are only a few key measures that are going to get you 80% of your jobs while everything else isn’t going to do much.

If you read books on Upwork they are going to take you down this path of putting a lot of effort into the 80% of things that get you 20% of your total jobs. You don’t have to be a math wizard to realize how that’s a complete waste of time. Instead you’d be much better off focusing on the 20% of things that are going to get 80% of the jobs. Like focusing on squatting, deadlifting, and pressing instead of concentration curls and crunches. So if you want to save yourself tons of time and trouble read the rest of the article.

Rising Talent

When you first start out you need to do everything in your power to earn the rising talent badge. This is going to be the number one thing that gets you jobs in the beginning and will get you to a high success score faster than anything else. How do I know this? Because I earned the rising talent badge when I started out and then ignored Upwork for a month and lost it.

When I had it after writing a decent proposal I would generally hear back from 1/3 clients then when I lost it that dropped to 1/8 or higher. So I really screwed myself with that one and had to claw myself out of not having a job success score as well as not having a rising talent badge. Your first priority is getting this badge which is how you get jobs in the beginning.

Job Success Score

After you’ve gotten a few jobs under your belt you are going to get a job success score. Most clients are looking for a job success score of 90%+ which as long as you avoid to bottom feeders and dregs you should easily get. This is what is most important about your profile. When you started it was the rising talent badge and now since you’ve graduated from that it’s your job success score being over 90%. Do everything in your power to maintain this. Even if you have to have a buddy contract you out for some low paying jobs just to stay in the ranking.

How do I know this? Remember when I lost my rising talent badge and didn’t have a job success score my rate was about 1/8 clients responding to my well written proposals (something I put a ton of effort in that did very little to help me) once I got a job success score of above 90% (really once I got a job success score period) this rate halved itself. No one wants to work with someone who looks unproven and your job success score is the number one way they look at this.

Top Rated

This is the holy grail of Upwork. I have yet to reach it, unlike others but every Upworker I have ever seen, heard, or met that makes any appreciable amount of money from the site has the top rated status. It’s also funny because top rated Upworkers will give advice about how to do your profile or write a proposal then talk about their success making you think that they had a high correlation (when they don’t, it’s their top rated status that nets them the majority of their money). Like a rich person talking about how he works out at the gym and meditates being responsible for his wealth instead of the fact that he’s a world class copywriter.

When you get top rated status others are going to come to you. When it comes to Upwork metrics the ones that matter most are these three little badges listed above they are going to net you 80% of your jobs. Other things like ranking for keyword, writing proposals, having a good picture, coming across as likable, and everything else aren’t going to do nearly as much for you as the badges are.


One other Upwork metric that is going to make a difference is if you are a native English speaker or not. Of course that’s not going to matter as much as having the rising talent badge when you start out, the job success of 90%+ when you get going, and top rated status when you finally “make it”. After reading every book out there on the subject, experimenting on my own profile, and learning as I go these are the conclusions I have come to.

If you want to make money on Upwork realize that the things above are what truly matter, no matter what you’ve read. Sometimes people are successful in spite of themselves. You’ll also realize that these all have to do with getting reviews (except rising talent). So you’d be wise to do work for someone you know and simply have them farm jobs out to you so you can grow your profile and success score. Something to think about.

Some other quick tips. Never end a contract on your own it negatively affects your job score, neve cancel a contrat even if the client sucks again affects your job score just soldier through. Every contract has an effect on your job score so tread wisely.

If you have any questions you would like to see answered in a future post send them to me at charlessledge001 (at) gmail (dot) com. If you found value in this post then I would encourage you to share this site with someone who may need it as well as check out my books here. I appreciate it.

-Charles Sledge

Charles Sledge