If your outsourcer is sick, is it within their right to leave you in the dark while they recover?

by Hanz
17 replies
This is one thing I've noticed A LOT! :p Happened to me once too.
When you're outsourcing a project to somebody, they're working on it and then suddenly they go missing and you end up losing your mind. You're bombarding them with emails demanding to know why they're not doing the project or why they're not returning emails. They basically vanish only to reappear a week or so later saying "Sorry I've been out of action with a bad cold!"
You're then demanding to know why they didn't return emails. Their response is "I was very sick!!!"

I'm just wondering for those of you who have been sick. Were you ever so badly sick that you couldn't come onto your computer to send out an email? Were you so sick that you were bed-ridden for a week or more?

Also, isn't it a worker's responsibility to call in sick? Which means inform the employer that you'll be out of action until you recover? How do you handle this when you're outsourcing work to 'sick' people?
#dark #leave #outsourcer #recover #sick
  • Profile picture of the author plambs
    Happened to me too, my 2 cents: Many outsourcers become "sick" when they get a better paid project in their hands.
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  • Profile picture of the author 04real
    I've had some disappear on me too, and then come back later asking for more projects.

    I give people the benefit of the doubt. If someone you hire doesn't communicate when something is wrong on their end, or if they just disappear for a while and not notify you for whatever reason, then you need to find someone more reliable. That's pretty much it.

    Over the course of my outsourcing experience I've been able to find reliable people and I have no doubts about giving them more projects. As for the ones that aren't so reliable... well, I wish them well. I hope they change because if they keep the same attitude with their other clients they won't have to call in sick anymore -- they won't have work to do.


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  • Profile picture of the author sax.sunny
    Very well said, plambs,

    In other words, either they are having a better opportunity at this moment, or they're not yet finished with the work (Didn't meet the deadline).

    @ OP - That is just one of the very common Excuses.
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  • Profile picture of the author raylm123
    Yeah, the only time I was so sick I wasn't able to access email/phone is when I unexpectedly ended up in the hospital for four days. Of course, I still had my husband call my place of employment to let them know!!!
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  • Profile picture of the author BD77
    Originally Posted by Hanz View Post

    I'm just wondering for those of you who have been sick. Were you ever so badly sick that you couldn't come onto your computer to send out an email? Were you so sick that you were bed-ridden for a week or more?
    I've had really bad food poisoning before so my answer to that question would be yes. Thankfully it was on a Friday night right after work so I didn't have to call in sick, but I suppose if I had to I probably could have called in. It was bad enough for a few days that I'm glad I didn't have to though. Even that would've been too much for me with how sick I was.

    Now, if it's something that happens often then I'd say there's probably something else going on. Like others have said, maybe they just haven't finished the project you've assigned to them or they got a better offer while working on yours. I guess you just have to set certain expectations on any future projects that you choose to give them. That or stop giving them work.

    I'm trying to get into outsourcing some of my stuff a bit more so it's nice to know what to expect and look out for.
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  • Profile picture of the author warriorkay
    Some might really have been sick, but courtesy
    does demand that they find a way to get through
    to you; unless of course the sickness is one that
    completely paralyzes them.

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  • Profile picture of the author NicoleBeckett
    Here's the bottom line - professionals do not leave their clients hanging. Even if you are sick as a dog, you can check your email once a day, or at least set up an auto-responder email message that says you're sick as a dog and will be back as soon as you can.

    If you're legitimately too sick to even do that, have someone (a friend, family member) check emails for you. Heck, I do that even if I take a Friday off and can't get iphone service, or get on a plane for a few hours!

    In the real world, you cannot just ignore your responsibilities. Even if you had a "real job" with a "real boss", you would still need to make a phone call and say that you're too sick to come in.
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  • Profile picture of the author myeanne
    Here's the thing..

    -That's why you need to make sure that there's always a back-up staff who will be working for your project when you're current staff isn't available (sick, emergency reasons). You can have this service to an outsourcing firm, unlike freelancers who are just working from home. The original staff ensures that the back-up staff gets all the background knowledge of the project. Outsourcing companies are offering this to meet deadlines and avoid late submission of output.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rien
    I agree, you cannot leave your clients hanging. A few years ago
    I was in the hospital unexpectedly and was in the middle of a few
    projects.

    I ended up sending emails from my cell phone to let them all know
    what was going on, while sitting in my hospital room.

    Rien
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  • Profile picture of the author Don Schenk
    Originally Posted by Hanz View Post

    I'm just wondering for those of you who have been sick. Were you ever so badly sick that you couldn't come onto your computer to send out an email? Were you so sick that you were bed-ridden for a week or more?
    Yes, it happened to me once. There was nothing I could do about it. Don't want that again. But I let my employees know about it, and the work got done.


    Also, isn't it a worker's responsibility to call in sick? Which means inform the employer that you'll be out of action until you recover? How do you handle this when you're outsourcing work to 'sick' people?
    I've even had "real" at-my-business, employees not show up or call in! Some people don't have a sense of personal responsibility. Too weird.

    My wife's brother manages a large retail business with about 250 employees. He has horror stories about "employees" not showing up for days without calling in. They quickly become ex-employees.

    :-Don
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  • Profile picture of the author Abhik
    well, tbh I never outsourced a project which takes more than a few hours to do.
    Like, some articles or a few designs. And, I never got those excuses.

    If that happen with me any day, I'll just go mad as I normally pay my outsourcer in advance.
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  • Profile picture of the author pokerdawg
    They're rarely sick. They're full of it when they say that...

    I hired 9 article writers. 4 of them got back to me 2 weeks late, ALL telling me they were in the hospital.

    I told them they should install Norton Antivirus because apparently everyone who uses eLance gets sick and they've got to stop catching viruses and ending up in the hospital.

    Last time I used that writer.

    If you have an outsourcer who you work with over a long period of time, they disappear for a few days and come back, saying they are sick, forgive once and tell them if it happens again (sick WITHOUT contacting you) they are fired.

    If they are relatively new, ditch them.
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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Originally Posted by Hanz View Post

    I'm just wondering for those of you who have been sick. Were you ever so badly sick that you couldn't come onto your computer to send out an email? Were you so sick that you were bed-ridden for a week or more?

    Also, isn't it a worker's responsibility to call in sick? Which means inform the employer that you'll be out of action until you recover? How do you handle this when you're outsourcing work to 'sick' people?

    Well, I WAS out a week and incommunicado, and bed ridden, for a week when my aorta nearly blew up.

    ONE time I was out and incommunicado for 3 weeks on the only real vacation I had.

    BOTH times my employer knew.

    They SHOULD let you know, but may not be able to. Imagine haiti right now. YIKES!

    That said, realize some odd things DO happen. My aorta nearly blew on saturday. Had I been an ortodox jew, they may never have heard about the incident(Saturday was the only time to call, and such things are forbidden friday night to saturday night)! Some societies have various things, like muslims with ramadan. Indians often take 3-5 weeks off a year.

    BTW I was on the stupid assignment that probably caused my aorta to blow because the guy that took it LEFT for "a death in the family". It turns out he found a better paying gig!

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author czilbersher
    I'm thinking of starting a clinic to help heal all those dogs that ate my outsourcer's homework. There may be an epidemic.
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  • Profile picture of the author ademartin
    It's happened to me a couple of times. Thing is I never pay upfront and let this be known before the project is started. If they want to play games like hide and seek I just ignore them when they eventually re-appear and start begging and they don't get paid.

    It's frustrating and time wasting and you have to post the project all over again or contact a previous bidder but at least your project funds are safe.

    It's why it's important to hold onto the good outsourcers you find.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jordan Kovats
    If they had a job, would they not call in sick to their employer? I don't get it either. I offered work to a guy a month a go...all gung ho, rah rah rah!. A few weeks go by, I send an email , here is you first piece of work, can you do it? No response...a few more days...another, "did you get the email I sent question...still no response. Off the list you come. Back to the old saying, "If it is to be, it's up to me!"
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    • Profile picture of the author hastings2111
      I have had some disappear as well. It didn't hurt as much since I had a few of them i was using.
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