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I have 1 year of experience working as a freelancer and on average, the jobs that I find are usually very fast in the communication and bidding process. An average communication goes like this:

>"Can you do this for XXX$?" 
>"Yes I can do that"  
>"Ok.Do It"
>"Done. Pay me"  
>Freelance work Finished # This usually takes three days as a maximum.

Now with more experience and reputation, I am receiving offers from companies interested in my services but I am having problem with the bidding process because the companies want to do an interview to talk about my skills and show proof of my knowledge or test me. Besides that, the company and interviewer doesn't talk about the hourly rate or how will I be paid so I lose my interest. This also happens with LinkedIn, the process is really long to apply for a job for the companies in the LinkedIn job listings, and think I can't do that because this takes me time that I could be spending biding on other, faster projects and also take time away from studying and improving my skills.

I don't know if your experience in the interview process is different than mine or if you all take interviews without problems but again I have a small amount of time, and these longer interviews deeply cut into that.

I feel like if I reject this kind of interview process I could lose the opportunity of an interesting and long-term job in a company and in this way forget those smaller gigs that only last three days. Maybe I am losing more than I earn, having preferences for these fast jobs.

2 Answers 2

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Longer-term clients are typically going to have a longer-form interview/onboard process, even for freelancers, as they're investing more time and money into you and the project you're going to be working on than if the job was able to be done in a couple of days. Think about it from their point of view: If the freelancer you hire for your 2 day project doesn't work out, the amount of time lost is far less than if they had hired said freelancer for a multi-month project and that freelancer doesn't work out. Companies/clients spending that extra time vetting those freelancers is worth it when the expected project workload is large.

The way to respond to this is... Let them do what they feel is necessary to ensure you're the right choice (within reason, of course). The investment of time on both sides (yours and theirs) should lend credence to the relationship you will have moving forward. Larger companies are typically going to have more extensive processes for hiring/contracting people out, so I'd expect this when you're getting involved with a bigger client.

You say:

I feel like if I reject this kind of interview process I could lose the opportunity of an interesting and long-term job in a company.

And, honestly, this is true. Recruiters don't work on your time, they work on theirs, and they're not really likely to adjust their timeframe for you unless you're an extraordinarily suitable candidate for what they're looking for.

My advice? Do your best to make the time for the most promising projects. If your goal is to get involved with interesting, long-term contracts, then making the time for them really is worth it. Furthermore, those companies will appreciate that you've committed the time necessary for them to feel comfortable enough to work with you.

As to your title's question, the best way to communicate that you'd like for the interview process to be shortened is to try and leave any level of annoyance out when you contact them. For your situation, I'd reach out to the recruiter/client and say something like:

"I've got a lot of other offers that I'm currently negotiating, and while I'm very interested in your project, I do have to make a decision about taking on that workload or not within (x timeframe). Please let me know as soon as you can if you'd like me to work on this project."

This sounds professional, but again... Don't expect this to work very often, especially if you're communicating with a recruiter instead of directly to a client. It's more likely that a recruiter will choose the freelancer who was able to make time for their process than one that wants them to rush.

If you're more comfortable working on a bunch of smaller projects, and aren't running out of opportunities for them, it's perfectly acceptable to stay within your comfort zone. If it works for you, and you feel like you're becoming more proficient at what you do, don't feel pressured to deviate until you're ready.

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Just ask them, there is nothing rude about clarifying timeframes or anything else.

If you lose an opportunity you lose it, it's not a big deal, you just move forwards and look for another.

As a freelancer you lose money chasing jobs as you're not getting paid for the time spent chasing so it's perfectly normal to be interested in any timeframes that affect your revenue.

companies want to do an interview to talk about my skills and show proof of my knowledge or test me

The projects that need this usually would not go to someone with just a years experience freelancing. Be careful with recruiters using up your time. They're not working for your benefit, they have their own agenda and stable to build.

Maybe I am losing more than I earn, having preferences for these fast jobs.

It's not all about money, you maximise their usefulness by networking and adding to your reputation for professional work. Your rep is eventually worth more than your qualifications.

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