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Friday October 31, 2014 1:03 am                

FAQ

 

 

   General FAQ's
   
 scroll

Project Guidelines (recommended read)

 scroll  What to do if the agreed upon price for a project goes up by mutual agreement after the job has been accepted.
 scroll What is a private message board (PMB) and how to use it
 scroll  What are the rules regarding leaving feedback?
 scroll  Are the genealogy specialists’ listed as members of this site employed by genealogyfreelancers.com?
 scroll  Are the genealogy specialists’ listed on this site living in different locations all around the world?
 scroll  What are the details concerning your gift certificates?
 scroll  What does the term "frozen" mean in relation to a project?
   
   FAQ's for Genealogy Specialists
   
scroll What are the benefits of signing up as a gold or silver member verses a free membership?
scroll How can I modify a bid once it is in placed? 
scroll How do I contact a project owner to ask questions before I make an offer? 
scroll Why should I have the client who found me on this site, pay me through the Genealogy Freelancers payment gateway? 
scroll What should I do if my client asks to continue with my services beyond the original scope of the project? 
scroll What are the fees associated with being a service specialist?
scroll How will you process my withdraw requests? 
scroll How do I rate and write a review for my client? 
scroll Are there bid limits for free, silver, or gold memberships? 
scroll Negative Balances & Bid Allowances or Why can't I bid on anymore projects?
scroll How can I bid on a project? 
scroll How do I get paid? 
scroll Can I ask for a down payment? 
 scroll  I've finished a project so how do I forward the results to my client?
   
  FAQ's for Genealogy Seekers (Project Owners) 
   
scroll How do I pick the right Specialist for my project? 
scroll I'm not sure what details to include in my project post, where can I find help? 
scroll Do I need to wait for my project to expire before I pick a professional genealogist or other expert? 
scroll How does this work? 
scroll Why should I consider a Specialist who does not have a rating when I could choose one that does? 
scroll How do I rate and write a review for my Specialist when the job is complete? 
scroll Why should I always pay my Specialist through the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway?
scroll What if I have another project and I want to use the same Specialist again, why shouldn’t I contact them directly instead of going through genealogyfreelancers.com? 
scroll How do I pay my Specialist? 
scroll

What are the fees involved? 

scroll Will I have to put up the money for my project in advance?
scroll How do I deposit money through genealogyfreelancers.com in order to pay for my project? 
scroll How can I ask questions before selecting a specialist if I can’t contact them via their own personal email? 
scroll I forgot to add some details to my project description, how can I get this information added to my posting? 
   
   
   Project Guidelines –Useful tips for a great partnership 
   
   For Genealogy Seekers (Project Owners)
   1)  It is extremely important that you be as detailed as possible in regard to the description of your project.  It is far better to have too much information than not enough.  Even if you deem some facts to be of no importance, post the information anyway.  One can never guess what might be of value.  The form available on the Post a Project page will help guide you through information which will be helpful to include in your post.  You might also choose to upload any pertinent documentation if desired.  If all the information necessary to place an accurate bid is not present, specialists will have a more difficult time bidding on your project and/or the bids you do receive will be inaccurate.
   2)  You have the ability to add any additional information necessary to your project description after the project posts.  If you neglected to update the description with any new or forgotten details prior to selecting a specialist, please do so before they begin the project.
   3)  Make sure to discuss issues of concern with any bidding candidates prior to choosing your specialist.  Never be afraid to ask questions.  The burden of detailing a job falls on you and sometimes asking the right questions can help clarify details.  Communication is key to any successful partnership.
   4)  Periodically, a research specialist could potentially run into a problem that might affect the timeframe they provided for your project, through no fault of their own.  At times, a film necessary to your research could be on backorder or the archives essential to your job could be temporarily closed.  During these times, a bit of patience will be necessary.  All research specialists listed on this site are obliged under our terms and conditions to make every attempt to adhere to their initial timeframe for any project.
   5)  There is also no way of predicting how long it will take to view microfilm and other articles necessary to genealogy research unless a specialist is familiar with the specific item.  The condition and legibility of old documents cannot be pre-determined.  It is up to your specialist to provide you with a flexible timeframe which would allow them time to work through these difficulties without violating an agreed upon timeline (if possible).
   6)  Seekers must understand that the results for any project cannot be predetermined.  Make sure to have agreed to a research plan prior to selection of your specialist.  The researcher you choose will be obliged under our terms and conditions to complete all research as set forth in their bid details, however they cannot be held accountable if there is a negative result once they have fulfilled this obligation.
   
   For Genealogy Specialists
   1)  First and foremost, please be sure to read the list of tips for seekers as well.  There are many expectations covered here that will be of benefit to you when working with projects found on the genealogyfreelancers.com site.
   2)  Know your project.  You should be aware of as much information pertinent to a project ahead of time.  You are free to ask questions both before and after placing a bid via system email or the PMB board.  If you find the scope of the job to be different from your original impression, you may change your bid.  To do this, simply go back to the specific project post and enter a new bid.
   3)  List your credentials and memberships to professional organizations to your profile and in your bid details when bidding for a project.  Remember, project owners will be looking at your profile when pondering a selection so you'll want to showcase your background to the best of your ability.
   4)  Be sure to always respond to questions and concerns relating to a project in a timely manner.  Many problems can be avoided with good communication.
   5)  If you run into any problems or delays when attempting to complete a project, always notify your client immediately with the details.  Again, communication is key.  If you are chosen for a project and your bid included a specific time frame that cannot be met for a legitimate reason during the course of the project, updating your client immediately will avoid any misunderstandings.  Communicating in this way will also help to develop a bond that could potentially lead to additional future work with the same client through genealogyfreelancers.com!
   6)  Be sure to keep any and all proof of research conducted for each completed and on-going project should any questions arise in regard to the legitimacy of the research.  Examples include pink slips for LDS film, archive stamps, time stamps, etc.
   7)  For specialists that will need to forward the completed project via mail/post: be sure to keep your sender’s receipt and we encourage you to include delivery confirmation whenever possible.
   8)  Discuss your payment requirements in advance.  If a down payment or if full payment is necessary up front then make sure to include this information in your communications or in your bid details when presenting your offer.
   9)  Update your client on your progress periodically, especially if it’s a lengthy project.  It will be much appreciated.
   10)  Remember, positive feedback is imperative to your success on genealogyfreelancers.com.  Always work with a client in order to ensure a positive outcome for you both.  Feedback can only be left for or given if the project has been paid for through genealogyfreelancers.com
   
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What to do if the agreed upon price for a project goes up by mutual agreement after the job has been accepted.

 
Per our terms and conditions, a second project must be posted for the continuation of the original scope of the job.  We must be kept continually aware of any additional money that is charged beyond the initial bid in case there is a dispute of actual amount owed for a project.  This is mandatory.  Any violation of these terms will result in definite suspension and probable expulsion from Genealogy Freelancers.

 

What is the private message board (PMB) and how do you use it?


The private message board (PMB) is the environment in which genealogy seekers and genealogy specialists can communicate about a project after a bid has been placed.  This is a great tool for a seeker (project owner) to privately communicate any comments or questions regarding a bid and also for a specialist to provide answers and generally follow up on their offer if necessary.  To use the PMB, just follow these easy instructions:

Genealogy Specialists:

  • Locate your bid on the project post.
  • Click on the “PMB” icon
  • Type in your message and click submit. When the seeker sends a reply, you will be informed via email. To read their response, go back to the project post and locate your bid once again.  Note on your return that the amount of messages you have accumulated will be reflected next to the PMB icon.

Genealogy Seekers:

  • Log in and go to your project post via your account or the browse projects page.
  • Click the “PMB” icon located next to your username as project creator.  Note that the amount of messages you have accumulated will be reflected next to this icon.
  • Choose the identity of the bidder you would like to communicate with from the drop down list. 
  • From here, you can type in your message or scroll down to read a message that was left for you.
  • If the specialist sends a reply, you will be informed via email.  To retrieve it, simply click on the PMB icon again.
 

What are the rules regarding leaving feedback?


You can leave feedback from your account menu within 30 days of project completion.  You cannot edit or remove this feedback once it has been placed however, you can respond to feedback that has been left for you.  Most importantly, you can only leave and receive feedback for projects paid for in full through the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway.

 

Are the genealogy specialists’ listed as members of this site employed by genealogyfreelancers.com?

 
No, they are completely independent.

 

Are the genealogy specialists’ listed on this site living in different locations all around the world?

Yes they do!  We here at genealogyfreelancers.com have gone to great lengths to extend an invitation to professional genealogy specialists throughout the entire world.

 

What are the details concerning your gift certificates?

 
Our gift certificates are a great thought for any genealogy buff.  Buyers have their choice of a hard copy certificate sent via post (free within the continental US or a one dollar charge if elsewhere) or they can receive their certificate electronically via email.  If the recipient is already a member, we will credit their account with the amount of the gift.  If not, we will open an account for them, assign them a username and password which can be changed at their leisure and credit their new account.  The best part about it is that if the recipient does not find a specialist that they would like to engage, they can withdraw this credit at any time so there is nothing to loose!  Contact us with your order today.

 

What does the term "frozen" mean in relation to a project?

There are 3 different terms to denote the status of a project.  First is "open".  That means that the project is open for bidding.  Second is "frozen" which means that a Specialist has been selected but they have not yet accepted the opportunity.  Third is "closed" which means that the chosen Specialist has accepted the project and it is currently closed to any further bidding.

   
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What are the benefits of signing up as a gold or silver member verses a free membership?


There are many exciting benefits to becoming a gold or silver member.  Click here to find out what each membership has to offer.  The ability to upgrade or change your membership status is available from your account.  Changes can be made at any time barring any pending won projects waiting for acceptance.

 

How can I contact a project owner to ask questions before I make an offer?

 
All you have to do is click on the "ask project owner a question" button located on the project post you are interested in.  The PMB (private message board) can be used after you place a bid.

 

How can I modify a bid once it is in placed?


Log in and go back to the specific project post in question and click the red “Post/edit bid” link.

 

Why should I have the client who found me on this site, pay me through the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway?


Per our terms and conditions, you must always use our payment gateway for payments because it is the only way that you and your client can leave feedback for one another.  The more feedback you have and the higher your rating, the more others will be eager to work with you. 

 

What should I do if my client asks to continue with my services beyond the original scope of the project?

This question is not only about our terms and conditions, but it's also about feedback.  To be a success on this site, you need to be constantly aware of your feedback rating.  Seekers (project owners) will refer to it when deciding on a Specialist and a project owner will be more eager to work with a Specialist that has a positive rating.  If a seeker wants to use your services again, just simply instruct them to post their new project with your username in the title, for example “LoveGen22 only”.  This tells others that the job is intended only for you.  Doing any additional work this way allows your client to post even more positive feedback for you, therefore jumping your rating.

 

What are the fees associated with being a Specialist?


You can sign up as a gold, silver, or free member with us.  A free membership allows you to test out what we have to offer.  This is a good place to start for all of our Specialists.  The fees for this option are very reasonable and only include a 6% commission of your winning bid amount if selected for a job.  If you find that you are locating many clients on our site then it would benefit you to move to a paid membership.  The first option is a silver membership and that includes a monthly fee of only $8.00 and a 3% commission of your winning bid amount if selected for a job.  The final option is a gold membership.  For a flat fee of $15.00 per month, you will enjoy no commission fees on any won projects.  This is a great option for those of you who are really taking advantage of our site.  Keep in mind also that there is a 0% commission associated with any featured project no matter your membership level.

 

 How will you process my withdraw requests?


Requests are handled within 2 business days for those Specialists who qualify for immediate payment.  Once a Specialist has received at least 3 positive feedback ratings on at least 3 projects totaling at least 900.00 combined, they will have the option of withdrawing funds for any won project immediately or within 2 business days.  Until this status is achieved, project funds must stay in escrow until the project is complete and results have been forwarded to the project owner unless a milestone payment schedule has been established.  If a schedule has been agreed upon, a Specialist can withdraw the funds associated with the completed portion of the project at any time provided the results have been forwarded to the project owner previously.   Some exceptions are possible and we will review any requests to the contrary on a case-by-case basis.   Please contact us to find out if you might be an exception.  Options for withdrawal include: Paypal, Alertpay, Google Checkout, check or MoneyGram.  If the method you prefer does not appear on our list, feel free to contact us with any suggestions.  We are always open to new ideas and will always try to accommodate.

   
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How do I rate and write a review for my client?


As soon as you have been paid in full using the genealogy freelancers payment gateway, go to your account and select "Specialist Bid Activity” from your account menu.  Click on the "rate" button located next to the project title to write your comments.  Remember, you can leave and receive feedback for a project only if you have used the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway.

 

Are there bid limits for free, silver, or gold memberships?

There are no bid limits for a gold membership however, for a free membership there is a limit of 10 bids per month.  For a silver membership there is a limit of 25 bids per month.

 

Negative balances & Bid allowances or Why can't I bid on anymore projects?


If you tried to bid on a project and were not allowed to proceed, then it could be for one of the following reasons:  1) You have a negative balance in your account and must deposit funds to bring up the balance.  When you accept a project, the commission fee is automatically removed from your account.  If you have a "0" balance, this action will cause your account to go into the negative.  As a result, you will not be able to place any further bids until your commission fee has been paid.  You can remedy this situation in one of two ways.  First, you can add money to your own account by clicking on the "fund my account" link located in your account menu.  Second, if you require a down payment for a project you have accepted, the fee will be removed from that deposit.  2) The only additional reason other than a negative balance for your inability to place a bid could be because you have reached your maximum bid allowance for your membership type.  If neither of these reasons applies to you, contact us immediately.

 

How can I bid on a project?


Simple.  Just follow these steps:  log in and go to the “browse projects” page, locate a project that interests you, click to open the project, and click the red “post/edit bid” link.

 

How do I get paid?


Your client will make all payments through the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway. Depending on the circumstance and your agreed upon payment schedule, the project owner will have the option of transferring a partial payment, full payment or arrange an escrow payment.  Once a Specialist has received at least 3 positive feedback ratings on at least 3 projects totaling at least 900.00 combined, they will have the option of withdrawing funds for any won project immediately or within 2 business days.  Until this status is achieved, project funds must stay in escrow until the project is complete and results have been forwarded to the project owner.  Some exceptions are possible and we will review any requests to the contrary on a case-by-case basis.   Please contact us to find out if you might be an exception. If you have met this criteria or if you are deemed an exception, you do not need to wait until the project is 100% complete before payment is released or you must schedule several milestone payments with the project owner meaning that as each milestone is reached and that segment of the project has been delivered to the project owner, a matching portion of your payment will be released to you from escrow.  Genealogy Freelancers does not collect funds for a project on your behalf either before or following a project's completion.  Since the billing and collection process is the responsibility of the Specialist, please note that you should never release any research results without first determining that a payment has been made to your Genealogy Freelancers account in the agreed upon amount.  Our system will automatically notify you of any deposits.

 

Can I ask for a down payment?


Genealogyfreelancers.com in no way dictates payment schedules.  Often times when dealing with a larger project, however, multiple payments are necessary.  If you are new to our website or have not yet achieved 3 positive feedbacks for 3 projects totaling at least 900.00, you cannot withdraw a project's funds unless the project or portion of the project is complete.  It is advisable in which case, that a schedule of payments be established based on milestones.  Once a milestone is reached and that segment of the project has been delivered to the project owner, the project owner would release a portion of the payment from escrow.  This methodology is the perfect way to build trust in a new working releationship since a full escrow payment from the onset gives both the project owner and the Specialist equal control of the funds.  

Some exceptions to the mandatory hold of project's funds are possible and we will review any requests to the contrary on a case-by-case basis.   Please contact us to find out if you might be an exception.   

 

I've finished a project so how do I forward the results to my client?

We in no way dictate how you get the results of your work to your client.  You do not need to upload them through our system.  Just forward the results in the manner to which you are accustomed (email, post, etc...). 

   
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How do I pick the right specialist for my project?


Simple, communicate with the Specialists who have bid on your project using the PMB board designated to your job.  Take the time to interview each one independently and make sure you are clear on the exact research plan each Specialist has in mind for your project.  Take the time to find out what their bid includes (Is it a base price?  Is it an all inclusive price?  Is it an hourly price?  What can you expect to pay if the project scope goes beyond their initial quote?  ETC.) You can also click on any username (from the list of specialists who have bid on your project located on your post)  to view a complete profile of their knowledge, experience, and abilities.

 

I'm not sure what details to include in my project post, where can I find help?


It's always helpful to provide as many details as possible in your project post.  If you feel you require any additional direction in regards to the information you should include in your listing then click on the "Ask a genealogist" button which is also located on the posting form; we'll be happy to help.

 

Do I need to wait for my project to expire before I pick my professional genealogist or other expert?

No, you can choose your specialist at any time.

  How does this work?

Find out exactly what you can expect from using genealogyfreelancers.com, including an informative video here.

 

Why should I consider a specialist who does not have a rating when I could choose one that does?

 
You should always allow those specialists that are new to genealogyfreelancers.com the same opportunity as those more seasoned specialists because you might be missing out on a great working relationship.  The professionals who use this site have signed up with us at different times.  Just because they don’t have a rating here does not mean that they don’t have a tremendous amount of experience in their field.  They might have just signed up with us much later.  Take a moment to read their profiles and interview each bidder accordingly.

 

How do I rate and write a review for my Specialist when the job is complete?


You can rate your Specialist once your project is complete and you have paid him/her using the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway choosing the full payment option or releasing a full escrow payment.  Just go to your account and select "View my projects" from your account menu.  Look for a "rate button" next to your project title then leave the desired feedback.  Remember, you can write and receive feedback for a project if you have used the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway only.

 

Why should I always pay my specialist through the genealogyfreelancers.com payment gateway?


Per our terms, you should always use our payment gateway for payments because it is the only way that you and your client can leave feedback for one another.  Feedback is one of the most important parts of the process.  The more feedback you have and the higher your rating, the more other will be eager to work with you.

   
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What if I have another project and I want to use the same specialist again?  Why shouldn’t I contact them directly instead of going through genealogyfreelancers.com?

Per our terms, if the scope of your project has grown and you want to continue with the same Specialist then simply post another project and be sure to use their username in the title, for example “LoveGen22 only”.  This tells other bidders that the job is meant for only one specific person.

 

How do I send money to my Specialist after they have completed my project or if they require a down payment for my project to begin?


Easy!  There are 2 steps involved here.  First, make sure you have already funded your account.  To do so, click on the "fund my account" link located in your account menu.  Choose the amount you wish to fund your account with and follow the prompts.  Once accomplished and you have a positive balance showing on your account details page, click the “Pay my specialist” link located in your account menu and fill in the details.  You have the option to either transfer funds directly to your Specialist or you can take advantage of our free escrow program which we highly recommend in a new working relationship.  Please note that at present, there are multiple ways of funding your account ranging from free options to options which require a very small fee.

 

What are the fees involved?

It's free to post your project and select a Specialist at Genealogy Freelancers but if you would like to take advantage of an entire host of perks, we also offer some paid options as well.  After log in, click on the "post a project" link to find out more.

 

Will I have to put up the money for my project in advance?

This totally depends on the Specialist you choose.  Some professionals will require a down payment for obvious reasons.  Before choosing your Specialist, be sure to ask what their requirements are.  One option to consider is our free escrow program.  This gives both the specialist and seeker half of the control of the funds for any project.  A good compromise to build trust in a new relationship.

 

How do I deposit money through genealogyfreelancers.com in order to pay for my project?

 
Simple, just log in and go to your account.  Click the "fund my account" link located in your account menu.   From there, you will choose from a list of options for adding money to your genealogyfreelancers.com account.  Following your successful transaction, you can view the balance in your account on your “account details” page at any time. 

If your intent is to forward funds to your chosen Specialist, keep in mind that following the action of funding your account, you must click on the "pay my specialist" link located in your account menu to actually pay your Specialist.  This is step 2 of 2.   Think of funding your account like it is your own private little bank account then think of paying your Specialist like writing a check from your bank account.  That is essentially how it works.  Additionally, please note that at present, there are many ways to fund your account ranging from free options to options which require a very small fee.

 

How can I ask questions before selecting a Specialist if I can’t contact them via their own personal email?

 
Please review “what is a private message board (PMB)” above or click on the tip button located under each project post.

 

I forgot to add some details to my project description.  How can I get this information added to my posting?


No problem, just go to your account and click on the "View my projects" link located in your account menu.  Once there, you will see an "edit" button next to your project title.  Click on the button to add any further information.  You cannot change what you already wrote but you can add further details to your description, upload a file, or extend your project deadline.

   
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