How Upwork is Doubling Down on Candidate Experience with Grayscale

Upwork makes it fast, simple, and cost-effective to find, hire, work with, and pay the best professionals anywhere, any time.

They are the top marketplace for freelancers, where businesses connect with freelancers to work on projects from web and mobile app development to SEO, social media marketing, content writing, graphic design, admin help and thousands of other projects.


The Challenge

Upwork was looking for a way to improve their candidate survey scores and cutting time to fill by creating a high touch candidate experience.

While many companies were scaling back or abandoning their candidate experience initiatives in the wake of COVID-19, Upwork decided it was time to double down.

Dan Collins, their Director of Talent Acquisition, implemented Grayscale with two clear goals: 1) positively impact candidate survey scores, and 2) reduce time-to-fill.

Dan and his team were looking to automate much of their communication, determined to create a high touch experience throughout their process regardless of recruiter bandwidth, regardless of whether a candidate was selected to move forward or not.

“We were looking to automate our communication as much as possible, while keeping the recruiter in the driver seat.”

– Akilah Hicks, Talent Acquisition Operations Manager


The Solution

After vetting the market, Dan and team selected Grayscale to power their texting and automate their communication. They integrated Grayscale into their ATS, and within days they were up and running, texting with their candidates inside Greenhouse.

In the first 30 days of leveraging texting, it was clear to Dan that they were seeing the results they set out to achieve.

“We have already positively impacted candidate survey scores on our process and time-to-hire metrics.”

– Dan Collins, Director of Talent Acquisition

The recent global pandemic has only increased Upwork’s use of texting, as they find new and creative ways to engage their talent, keep candidates warm and automate more of their process.

“Adding Grayscale to our toolbox has been our best investment in the past twelve months.”

– Dan Collins


Bringing it All Together

Upwork set out with the goal of improving their candidate experience, which they accomplished, and then some. They’ve realized this is a season where they can take big strides to transform their employment brand in ways that will have lasting impact once the global pandemic subsided.

Leveraging a channel like texting, while automating critical communication points in your process, can help deliver a consistent, high touch candidate experience that scales to meet the needs of your business – however they may evolve over the coming months.

If you’re looking to double down on candidate experience like Upwork, we’d love to help.