PeoplePerHour is a broad employment platform to find freelance jobs in administration, design, writing, translation, photography, software development, business systems and more
Expected pay: Widely variable
Commissions & fees: 3.5% – 20%, plus extras
Where: Nationwide (remote)
Requirements: Vary by job
Peopleperhour connects freelancers with employers needing help with short-term projects in a variety of areas — technology, writing, translation, photography, accounting, music and production, voice over work and design — to name a few.
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How it works
If you want to find work on this site, you’ll need to apply, which is a two-step process. You sign in either with Facebook or your email; and then verify your email address. At that point, an application will pop up that asks for a photo and basic bio information. You’ll choose your service area from the site’s list of job titles.
When you hit submit, you run into PeoplePerHour’s first potential fee — a “fast-track” application fee that promises to review your application in 24-hours for a $13 cost. If you choose not to pay that fee, your application will go into a queue and be processed over a 7-day period.
You can search for jobs on the site at any time. However, until you get approved, you are not allowed to bid on any jobs. That may not be a disadvantage, though.
Most of the jobs we saw when testing the site were low-paying. Anything that offered rates that were close to minimum wage in the U.S. had multiple applicants. One job, purporting to pay $18 an hour for data entry, for instance, had 54 applicants within two hours of being posted.
Freelancers can also create “offers” on the site, saying what they can do for a set price. Customers can buy these offers and customize them.
Custom offers can also be arranged for either a fixed price, a per-hour rate or a rate per item or piece.
If both buyer and seller agree to a job, the buyer puts the payment in escrow with the site. PeoplePerHour releases the payment when the job is complete and the buyer is satisfied.
PeoplePerHour also says it has a “limited payment protection” plan, which is supposed to guarantee worker wages. However, there are numerous requirements for the protection plan to kick in.
Theoretically you can earn a good wage working here. But, there’s a wide gulf between practice and theory.
That’s partly because every project goes through a bidding process, where freelancers essentially make a blind offer to work on the job. Buyers choose which bid to accept. And, while some freelancers may be able to differentiate themselves enough to win a bid that provided a reasonable wage, you’re bidding against sellers in third-world countries, where the cost of living is minuscule by US standards.
Moreover, the site doesn’t provide much customer support. So, when a buyer decides to change their project dramatically in the middle of work, it appears the freelancer is out of luck. (See “what their users say” below.)
Fees, fees and more fees
Indeed, what Peopleperhour may do best is find clever ways to charge fees.
Both buyers and sellers pay a commission, which ranges from 3.5% to 20% (depending on billings).
But that’s just the start. You also need to consider the PPH point system. If you’re a worker, you get 15 points per month for free. You use those points to bid on jobs. However, some “high value jobs” require multiple points. If you run out of points, you have to buy more at a rate of roughly $9 per 5-point allotment. Buying points does not get you out of paying the commission.
If you have a payment dispute, PPH charges a “request for information” fee. There’s a “fast track” fee of $13, if you want a document reviewed quickly; a $15 “feature hourly” fee to promote the jobs you are willing to do; a “featured profile” fee (cost varies) to make listings more prominent; and a $10 monthly fee for inactive accounts.
Another red flag
In November of 2019, SideHusl editors noticed that review sites, such as Trust Pilot, were being flooded with positive PeoplePerHour reviews. These reviews contain no real information — i.e. “this site is awesome..the best…special.” We believe these are fake reviews aimed at undermining the tales of woe experienced by real freelancers.
This site essentially offers the same spectrum of freelance services as Fiverr, but Fiverr has a customer support team. And, it doesn’t expect you to bid on projects. There, you create an offer and people decide whether or not to buy it. You decide what to offer; what it costs; and when you can deliver it. This process if far more freelancer-friendly than what you’ll find at PeoplePerHour.
We believe Fiverr is the better platform for both buyers and sellers. You can check out Fiverr here.
What their users say: (from SiteJabber)
I was using their platform as a designer from actually the start of when they started. I find their process deceptive. The jobs on there are so low quality. While they are a uk site, it is not uk friendly and they heavily modify reviews which you leave about your experience on trust pilot. The fees they charge are too high. What are they actually doing with that money? Oh yeah they have their administrators take down genuine user experiences of their shoddy site.
PeoplePerHour, now having a new 14-day payment policy, has come to be an outright scamming platform. Don’t even touch. You’re not only not going to receive your hard-earned money on time, but you’ll end up PAYING money to withdraw your earnings. Customer/Freelance Support? Ha! Forget it. They just ignore your requests. You best stay away. Questions? Just touch base and I’ll be so glad to share more stories about PeoplePerHour. (Also check a ridiculous payment clearing policy PPH has introduced recently.)
First of all, there are literally 100s of fake job posts there daily. People who would post many jobs but never hire. And secondly as a freelancer, there is no protection. Any client can at any point report you, and they would block your account. And you cant complain. You can only talk to that specific client to solve it for you, which they never would. Another experience of mine: the Client changed the requirements after 3 weeks of work. I was creating a website and he changed the url and wanted a different website. When I talked with support, they said they cant do anything. I should just cancel the contract and don’t work for them anymore.
From Trust Pilot:
Either the people inviting you to propose are scammers or the website has no vetting structure.
I have requested the funds literally from 21 days ago to the current date and still not getting any tangible date from the support.
Posted a request on their website to locate the money that was not put in my people per hour wallet and no one is replying to me on the platform.
A buyer hired me to organize some electronic documents, which I did. When raising an invoice for the work, he rejected it. First he said his pc had broken and then he had changed his mind and decided not to pay me anything. After raising a dispute with PPH, they suspended MY account giving a reason that I got paid outside of PPH! I most definitely have not and now I get paid zero.
It’s a good idea and kinda works, but will be very much a last resort when I can’t get work by other means. Out of £485 earned, I get to receive £368.60. I make that a stinking 24% for them. However, I still haven’t received my cut because they’re constantly refusing to verify any of my bank accounts.
I’ve been a freelancer and buyer on PPH since 2013. Since 2020, the escrow account is no longer a safe way to insure payment. I’ve had two buyers that removed the deposit they place into escrow to insure payment. Once i completed the job, there was no money for payment. And PPH won’t take any action when the buyer removed funds from escrow. Strongly recommend getting jobs from elsewhere.
PeoplePerHour.com was a great way for me to find income while I was hurt (surgery) and couldn’t work. I simply would go on the site and find work that was best suitable for me and my skills. Sometimes relationships with clients could be confusing or testy, but I came to love the work I did for that site, and the satisfaction of answering the requests of people just like me looking for help. The hardest part of the job was worrying if someone would rip you off over the internet and not pay you accordingly. The most enjoyable part was getting paid in the comfort of my own home!