30 replies
I recently hired someone on odesk to do keyword/domain research and then build a wordpress page. He has not worked even an hour yet and I have caught him once on the clock not working. Also he told me the competition for my keyword was kind of high. Funny thing is a screenshot was taken of how he was searching for keywords the screen shot can be found here.

Should I fire this guy?
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  • Profile picture of the author Aaron Doud
    If you are asking this the answer is clear. Don't waste more time and money.
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  • Profile picture of the author triojobss
    Banned
    Definitely fire him if he is not fulfilling his purpose!
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
    I just want to make sure he is really not doing his job right. It looks to me like he is only searching for high, medium competition. Am I right?
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  • Profile picture of the author royljestr
    I would definitely fire him! You can get some decent keyword research off of fiverr and you aren't locked into anything.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sojourn
    Matt - Hold on...are you saying that he's been working for you for only an hour and that during that hour you found him not actually working at one point in time? Or are you saying that in some stretch of multiple hours where he's supposed to have worked for you, he hasn't worked even a single hour?

    If he's only worked for you for one hour, I think it's a little early to tell whether or not he's going to work out. He hasn't even had a chance to return any finished product to you.

    Second, Adwords competition is NOT the same as SEO competition. Adwords competition is the level of attention a phrase is getting from those who are bidding on the phrase for Adwords campaigns. SEO competition is the strength of the results that show on the 1st page of Google for any phrase. He may be restricting his search on Adwords to medium to high competition in order to focus in on keywords that others have determined to be valuable based on how much they're willing to bid for those spots which can be an indication of the commerciality of that phrase were you to rank organically.

    You can't tell from that one screenshot whether or not the competition for the keywords you're targeting is high or not.

    Based on what you've shared here, it may be a little early to pull the trigger on this hire.
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    • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
      Thanks Sojourn this is the type of reply I was looking for. I am new to seo and IM so I wasn't sure if he was doing it right. I don't want to start sinking money into him and then not see a return
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    • Profile picture of the author YasirYar
      Originally Posted by Sojourn View Post

      Matt - Hold on...are you saying that he's been working for you for only an hour and that during that hour you found him not actually working at one point in time? Or are you saying that in some stretch of multiple hours where he's supposed to have worked for you, he hasn't worked even a single hour?

      If he's only worked for you for one hour, I think it's a little early to tell whether or not he's going to work out. He hasn't even had a chance to return any finished product to you.

      Second, Adwords competition is NOT the same as SEO competition. Adwords competition is the level of attention a phrase is getting from those who are bidding on the phrase for Adwords campaigns. SEO competition is the strength of the results that show on the 1st page of Google for any phrase. He may be restricting his search on Adwords to medium to high competition in order to focus in on keywords that others have determined to be valuable based on how much they're willing to bid for those spots which can be an indication of the commerciality of that phrase were you to rank organically.

      You can't tell from that one screenshot whether or not the competition for the keywords you're targeting is high or not.

      Based on what you've shared here, it may be a little early to pull the trigger on this hire.
      i agree. Try to wait a few more days and ask him to deliver results. if he fails, then go ahead and fire him.
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  • Profile picture of the author JeanneLynn
    I'm not familiar with Odesk. How do you know he's not working? Are you actually able to see your worker through skype or something?
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    • Profile picture of the author Sojourn
      Originally Posted by JeanneLynn View Post

      I'm not familiar with Odesk. How do you know he's not working? Are you actually able to see your worker through skype or something?
      I know Odesk has a sort of worker-monitoring application that screen captures what the outsourcer is doing. I downloaded it but never did hire anyone through Odesk but I know someone who swears by the screen capture tool.

      Matt, I assume that's what you were using? Would love to know if you like that part of the Odesk experience?
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  • Profile picture of the author IMWinner
    I wouldn't say that you will automatically fire that guy, since as you have said and what Sojourn had mentioned, it's only an hour since you hire the guy. You cannot just be expecting some outputs or results on an hour after hiring someone and based your judgments on the screenshot that you had on his Odesk activity.

    I also agree with Sojourn that it is too early to fire a guy at that time, since he/she hasn't deliver and produce his work yet to you. This will not mean to waste your time and money on someone who you feel is not working productively to you, but it is just too early. Let him/her finished the task that you require him/her to do, and from his/her performance, then probably you can based your judgments there, whether you will fire him/her or allow him/her to continue on what he/she was doing.

    We must have to understand also, if that person is a newcomer, then he/she is probably still on the process of trying to master what he/she must do in her task. As they said "Great things start from small beginnings".
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
    Sojourn,
    I believe I am using something similar to what you are talking about. I did not have to download anything though. I am able to see screen shots that are taken randomly while they are on the clock. I suppose the screen shots are uploaded from the workers computer and then I am able to view them from the work diary section of my Odesk.
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    • Profile picture of the author tchavez
      Matt,

      I agree with sojourn. It's too early to fire the guy, just wait for the finished task and then decide if you are to fire him or not.

      I do some work through odesk and the screenshot isn't really random at all. The screen capture occurs every 10 mins. Regarding the "how" you get the screen shots, a contractor needs to download "odesk team application" to log in and be able to track time. It also tells you how many times the contractor types in the keyboard and uses the mouse.

      Hope that helps.

      Thanks,
      Tom


      Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

      Sojourn,
      I believe I am using something similar to what you are talking about. I did not have to download anything though. I am able to see screen shots that are taken randomly while they are on the clock. I suppose the screen shots are uploaded from the workers computer and then I am able to view them from the work diary section of my Odesk.
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  • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
    Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

    Should I fire this guy?
    Pretend I am someone smart and professional whose opinion you respect so highly, you would never even question it.

    What answer would I give you?

    Do that.

    (You already know what to do. You just want someone to give you permission. Pretend you have it.)
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    "The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
    CDarklock,

    You are right, but I have never done this before and I want to make a mistake if I can prevent it.

    Also update: The employee is telling me to buy a domain that is $69 because it is older then 3 months and google won't rank anything younger then 3 months because it is seen as spam.
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    • Profile picture of the author bhola badshah
      Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

      CDarklock,

      You are right, but I have never done this before and I want to make a mistake if I can prevent it.

      Also update: The employee is telling me to buy a domain that is $69 because it is older then 3 months and google won't rank anything younger then 3 months because it is seen as spam.
      he s bit true, the new domains cant rank well than old ones and if you do lot of work on them they can go in sand box and you wont get the results, however 3 months is still not an old domain to rank, is it a typo maybe its 3 years old.
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    • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
      Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

      You are right, but I have never done this before
      The first time you fire someone is a terrible, terrible thing.

      It never stops being terrible (unless you're a dick), but it's honestly not as bad as you think.

      Look at it this way: you have a parasite in your business charging you money that you could be spending on a more productive employee.

      Now go show the rest of the world what ought to happen when people do this.
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      "The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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  • Profile picture of the author Ryan Rieth
    When you hired him did you tell him how you wanted him to do the keyword/domain research? If not then how do you know he is doing it wrong and should be fired? Everyone has their own way of doing things. Especially when it comes to keyword research.
    When your outsourcing you also have to remember that those people are people they are not machines. You are going to see them slacking every now and again, that's just the way it works.
    How much are you paying this person?" Where are they from? (just curious)
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    • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
      Originally Posted by Ryan Rieth View Post

      When you hired him did you tell him how you wanted him to do the keyword/domain research? If not then how do you know he is doing it wrong and should be fired? Everyone has their own way of doing things. Especially when it comes to keyword research.
      When your outsourcing you also have to remember that those people are people they are not machines. You are going to see them slacking every now and again, that's just the way it works.
      How much are you paying this person?" Where are they from? (just curious)
      Ryan,
      I did not tell him exactly how I wanted it done. My concern (with the screenshot I provided) was that he was limiting his search to medium, high competition. That just didn't make since to me which is why I came here.
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  • Profile picture of the author jonnyq888
    Matt,

    It sounds like you may have hired someone to work for you too soon. I'm not trying to be mean but it sounds like you may be new to SEO. Sometimes it is best to do these things for yourself first before hiring someone else to do it for you. That way you can have a good foundation and know when the person you are hiring is giving good advice.

    For example, buying older domains CAN help with SEO. However, that depends on how much SEO work was done on that domain name in the past, whether or not past backlinks are still active, whether or not the domain was allowed go into an obvious disuse (i.e., it displays one of those pages that says "This domain name is for sale."), etc. Age alone is not the only factor.

    Beyond that, the idea that a domain that is less than 3 months old will not rank is not necessarily true either. It really depends on the competition, your on-page SEO, your content, whether the domain contains the keyword in it, and your backlinking.
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    • Profile picture of the author Matt Braun
      Originally Posted by jonnyq888 View Post

      Matt,

      It sounds like you may have hired someone to work for you too soon. I'm not trying to be mean but it sounds like you may be new to SEO. Sometimes it is best to do these things for yourself first before hiring someone else to do it for you. That way you can have a good foundation and know when the person you are hiring is giving good advice.

      For example, buying older domains CAN help with SEO. However, that depends on how much SEO work was done on that domain name in the past, whether or not past backlinks are still active, whether or not the domain was allowed go into an obvious disuse (i.e., it displays one of those pages that says "This domain name is for sale."), etc. Age alone is not the only factor.

      Beyond that, the idea that a domain that is less than 3 months old will not rank is not necessarily true either. It really depends on the competition, your on-page SEO, your content, whether the domain contains the keyword in it, and your backlinking.
      Thank you for the information. He said that if a domain name isn't 3+ months old that google would see it and all attempts to get it indexed and ranked as spam. It sound's like you are saying the opposite if I'm not mistaken.
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      • Profile picture of the author Daniel Evans
        Might be a tough call (hence your thread) but there's no margin for slackers!
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      • Profile picture of the author jonnyq888
        Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

        Thank you for the information. He said that if a domain name isn't 3+ months old that google would see it and all attempts to get it indexed and ranked as spam. It sound's like you are saying the opposite if I'm not mistaken.
        That is definitely not true. I can usually get a new domain indexed in about 48 hours. Getting it ranked is a different story

        Anyway, Google is not going to look at a site and label it as spam just because a domain is less than 3 months old. They will watch it and look at the quality of the site more critically but you're not going to get an automatic spam label. If that is exactly what he is telling you, then I would fire him. He is either not very knowledgeable in the craft that you are paying him for or he is deliberately trying to deceive you.

        I have hired and fired a ton of outsource workers. That is just part of the deal. Be polite about it and don't burn any bridges if you decide to terminate the employment.
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  • Profile picture of the author dadamson
    Hiring and firing is all part of the business. It's hard to tell if your worker is actually slacking off, or if he is working hard (you may just of seen a screenshot of him switching between windows and THOUGHT he was slacking off).

    Personally I don't focus to hard on the screenshots, I pay for results, as long as he gets what I want done, I pay him for it.

    In oDesk you need to be careful about how you go about hiring people and ensure they have the skills.

    Something like keyword research and SEO should actually be done be someone credible and experienced in the area, otherwise you are going to be fighting an uphill battle for the rest of the websites life.

    For simply creating the Wordpress site, I would have no hesitation in outsourcing.

    -Dave
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve Wells
    Originally Posted by Matt Braun View Post

    I recently hired someone on odesk to do keyword/domain research and then build a wordpress page. He has not worked even an hour yet and I have caught him once on the clock not working. Also he told me the competition for my keyword was kind of high. Funny thing is a screenshot was taken of how he was searching for keywords the screen shot can be found here.

    Should I fire this guy?
    Do you believe you would/should be fired if the roles were reversed?

    "One" "on the clock not working" could be a bathroom break, smoke break or something ligitimate, Who know? But if they do not know how to perform the job they are hired for, then sure they should be replaced with someone who does know how to do the work properly and effeciently...
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  • Profile picture of the author HawkPrecision
    If he isn't doing his job, then he doesn't deserve the job.
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  • Profile picture of the author KO
    Any relationship that starts off badly will go badly. That's been the case 100% of the time in my experience, and it will stay that way,because I never continue any relationship that starts bad.

    That goes regardless of what's at stake. I've had clients beg for me to take checks from them and I refused. Life is too short and it's not worth it. Pull the trigger and fire this "worker."
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  • Profile picture of the author bastion
    Fire him. Don't waste your time, money and energy. And by the side, there is someone who really need that job, so, find the right person, don't waste time on the one, wrong person.
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  • Profile picture of the author ExquisiteMedia
    I have a cold heart, so I would snip him and drop him on his head.
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  • Profile picture of the author savvybizbuilder
    Things can be resolved in a nice talk. In Odesk, you can actually see your employee working. Advice him to delete unnecessary screen shot that are not related to his work, this way you can reset the time he waste.
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