Hiring A Merch By Amazon Designer On Upwork

So I just got this question from a reader named Izzy:

“One question though: when you posted onto UpWork, what did your initial ad say that you were looking for, and what parameters did you use? How did you choose who to hire? Would you recommend Upwork over something like Fiverr for any reason, or did you just happen to find someone on Upwork? Sorry for all the questions. Thanks!!”

Instead of answering it as a comment, I decided to answer it in the form of a blog post.

So Izzy, here you go!

What did my initial ad say?

Here is the exact copy that was used on my job posting:

Please start your cover letter off by naming your favorite band (just to make sure you read the directions)

I will provide the ideas and just need you to recreate them in the format that I specify (Photoshop files and a PNG export).

These items will be used on Merch by Amazon, so they will have to be created on the provided templates.

I will provide you a shirt idea and I will need you to create the ideas in a vector format.

If you have any questions, please let me know.

What parameters did I use?

This is what I had from my parameters on Upwork:

More than 30 hrs/week
More than 6 months

Entry Level
I am looking for freelancers with the lowest rates

Project Stage: Fully Specified

You should have experience with the following applications: Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator 

Project Type: Ongoing project

Ongoing project: Garment Designer

How did you choose who to hire?

The way I handled choosing my freelancer is as follows:

1 – I waited about 72 hours to get all of the possible applicants.

2 – I quickly eliminated anyone who did not follow the directions in my job posting: “Please start your cover letter off by naming your favorite band”

3 – I then eliminated anyone with a hourly rate above what I was willing to pay.

4 – Then I used my own judgement (reviews, cover letter, portfolio) to narrow it down to 4-5 candidates.

5 – I then reached out to each of my finalists and asked them if they would be willing to preform a paid trial period of 10 hours.

For those who were interested, I created a handful of shirt ideas and I would send them the following instructions:

Ok – For each design, I would like at least 1 version (you can do up to 3) for the topic provided.

When you are done with a file, I need to have the following exports:

3 PNGs with a transparent background (one dark (preferably black), one light (preferably white), and one colored).

1 Source File

And these are the design I would like worked on.

Again – Please use creativity as you see fit.

Templates can be found here. And time of day doesn’t matter to me as long as the work gets done

You can use either template

I would then attached the Merch by Amazon design templates.

6 – I would monitor the work and give feedback at the 5 hour mark. I would use this as a time to see if they can follow my instructions and handle my feedback.

7 – Then I would finish out the trial period and decide if there was a freelancer that I would like to hire.

Some times, I would find 1 or 2 that I would like to hire. Other times, I wouldn’t find anyone that would fit my criteria.

8 – I would start my contract with the VA and I would do a slow increase in hours to make sure the quality of work maintained the same. I sent them something like this:

I am going to start off with a 10 hour limit for the first week and then 20 hours the second week. If everything goes well, then I will expand it to 30-40 hours per week (if you are interested in that many hours). If you have any questions, please let me know. CW

9 – As long as everything went well, I would increase the hours to 40 and then I would keep feeding design ideas to the VA.

Would you recommend Upwork over something like Fiverr?

It all depends on what you are looking for. Fiverr has some great designers, but I was looking for someone that could be my personal virtual assistant. My VA works 40+ hours per week and I am her only client.

Again it’s up to you, but I have had better success with Upwork.



One thought on “Hiring A Merch By Amazon Designer On Upwork

  • February 23, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    This advice is super helpful Chris


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