How You Should Not Contact a Freelancer (SkillSearch You’re Doing it Wrong)

marcosecchi Dev, Uncategorized 0 Comments

As a freelance developer I usually get all kind of contacts: sometimes pretty interesting, sometimes really weird (”I have an AWESOME idea, you develop it and then you get 20% from the download revenues!”). I usually answer everybody as I think that being polite is really important in my everyday life (that’s what my parents taught me).

Unfortunately, lately I got a contact from SkillSearch that made me really upset…

available_for_freelance

(picture by chrispiascik)

Here’s what KJ from SkillSearch wrote me:

Dear Marco,
I have just had a new remote unity contract through working for an interactive studio. You will need to be able to attend an interview onsite in Milton Keynes prior to starting the remote work. The project will involve working on Interactive Training Simulations. They are looking for more than one contractor so if you know of anyone else who is available then please pass on my details! If you are interested and available to start either ASAP or mid Jan please send me an up to date CV, potential start date and current day rate. If this is not for you then have a great Christmas and New Year! Also, why not follow us on LinkedIn for all our news and updates. Thanks, KJ

Well, that seemed pretty bizarre to me as I live in Italy, and attending an onsite interview without a prior chat was something new to my experience. Anyway, I decided to answer back as it seemed a nice opportunity:

Hello K,
first of all, thanks for contacting me.
I would be more than happy to hear more details about this opportunity. My daily fee is XYZ € (but it may change a bit, depending on the type of involvement) and I would feel more comfortable starting in mid January (at the moment I’m a bit busy…).
Best regards, Marco

I got no answer from this, but instead I was “magically” subscribed to SkillSearch mailing list without my approval.

After almost a month KJ wrote me again:

Hi Marco
URGENT REMOTE CONTRACT – ASAP START I have just had a REMOTE unity contract through working for an interactive studio. You will need to be able to attend an interview onsite in Milton Keynes prior to starting the REMOTE work. This is extremely urgent as a previous contractor has unfortunately pulled out of the project due to personal reasons. The project can be done remotely and will involve working on Interactive Training Simulations. If you are interested and available to start ASAP please send me an up to date CV, potential start date and current day rate.

KJ

Well, I thought, I asked to be contacted in January, so here she is…

Hello K,
thanks for getting back to me about this opportunity.
I’m currently available as a remote contractor, but before attending an interview onsite I would like to hear more precise details about this job, just to be sure it is an opportunity that suits my skills.Do you think it would be possible to have a remote interview (Skype call, Hangout, Face Time)?
My day rate is XYZ€ (but it may change a bit, depending on the type of involvement).
Best regards, Marco

The answer was just stunning to me:

Hi Marco,
Thanks for coming back to me, unfortunately they are looking for people located in the UK

Thanks

Well I was just upset, this is not the way a professional should be treated but I just wanted to give her a way to explain herself (was she just staging and had no experience on how to behave?)

Hello K,
thanks… but I’m a bit confused… if they are looking for people located in the UK, why did you contact me (twice) in the first place?
Regards, Marco

The answer stunned me more!

Hi Marco,
You are in my contract book so the email goes out to all the contractors.

Thanks

First of all, I was never one of theirs contractors! Secondly, you are working for an agency that has the words Skill and Search as their logo and you tell me that you are just spamming everybody in your contact list for a job? I’m sorry Mrs KJ, but you are doing your job wrong…

I hope this is just an unfortunate coincidence, and this KJ is just inexperienced; I’m pretty sure most SkillSearch employees are really good at their job (well, not the one that selected Mrs KJ), but I really felt upset by this unprofessional behavior.