We want your thoughts on a jobs board for Toolset Contractors

   Peter

January 7, 2019

We have been listening to your feedback over the last few months and a number of you (both clients and contractors) have said you would like to see a jobs board as part of Toolset Contractors.

The jobs board would act as a single page where clients will be able to post any work they need and contractors will be able to apply for the ones that best suit them.

Why a jobs board could help both clients and contractors

Under the current system, Toolset clients need to contact each contractor with the same message asking whether or not they are suitable for the job on offer. This, of course, takes more time than it should.

With a jobs board, clients will only need to post their job once and only once for everyone to see. Any questions contractors have can be answered on there to ensure clients do not have to answer the same questions to different people. As a result, clients should receive more offers from contractors as everyone will be able to see their job offer.

The jobs board will help contractors too. Contractors will be able to quickly scan through all the jobs on offer to find the ones that best match their skills and bid for them.

As you can see, we hope that the jobs board will benefit both clients and contractors.

We need your feedback

Before we start working on this project we want to hear your thoughts. Is this something you want? Will it significantly improve your experience of using Toolset Contractors?

Please let us know in the comments below.

Don’t forget, if you have any other thoughts or suggestions on how we can improve our Contractors system please share them with us here.

 

Comments 74 Responses

  1. Assuming that you are also going to roll this out to WPML, I think it is a really bad idea to have more than 400 developers “fighting” for a job.

    Ultimately this is going to become a race to the bottom and apart from the fact that I think that Toolset nor WPML should not be associated with low price/quality, for the clients it is also a bad experience as they will most likely base their choice on price, with the consequences leading from there.

    Toolset/WPML should not try to become a Fiverr/Upwork/etc.

    Bad idea really I think.

    • Not every company is looking for the cheapest developer, a lot are thankfully still looking for the best developer. Large companies search for developers who live in the same country, or speak the same language to facilitate communication, rather than hire dirt cheap Indian developers in a +8h timezone.

      So for me personally, this is a good thing. But to each his own opinion of course.

  2. “Bad idea really I think” +1 from Me

    I still waiting for some video guide about Toolset Communication System and implement other cool features.

  3. not important to me either, I’ve got enough work. I agree with hendrikG, The focus on product development is more important and indeed especially on gutenberg. Also making the UI better to use for “non-coders” could be benefical for you, Good look!

  4. I would like to be able to get the help of my fellow developers and in that sense being able to offer up a task on one of my sites would be useful. I am of the opinion that someone here will have found a solution to a task I am working on and it makes no sense to reinvent the wheel when a payment to another professional for their advice and help would benefit us both.

  5. Ich finde die Idee einerseits nicht schlecht, aber ich glaube dass die Weiterentwicklung von Toolset Komponenten wichtiger ist. Ich denke da zum Beispiel an die Entwicklung der Double – optin, Double Optout Funktion (welche für den deutschen Markt wichtig ist )

  6. I think a job-board would start a fight for the lowest prize and that’s not a goal for a professional developer who has to earn his living. I could not compete with a low-cost developer from Asia. A job-board wouldn’t make any sense for pro-developer.

  7. I must admit I find this great news. The idea of contacting each and every contractor personally and requesting whether they can meet a need or not seemed rather cumbersome. I feel it would be much more efficient for people to post a requirement and then let contractors reply. After all they can choose whether to or not. Isn’t that how it’s dome in the real world “Request For Proposals” etc, Government Contract Sites where companies can bid on contracts, and all the other bidding systems out there. Look at the job market as another example, and after all, these are jobs…

  8. There are already too many job portals I am involved with, and I do not see the need for another one. Maybe you should partner up with another job portal and make toolset related contractors show special emphasis. Also if possible, use some rss feed or api from these job boards to list toolset related jobs here. But the actual job will be handled by the portal and not toolset website.

    This way, toolset can focus on making the best product, and also help toolset developers find toolset related jobs, in one place. But you do not have to worry about the overhead of marketing to whole world.

  9. There were two “sides” reflected in the comments to date, and I agree with both.

    From my perspective, I am often looking for additional clients and work, if this can help me in that respect it will be valuable. But I do agree that it could be detrimental as most (not all) clients base price as a primary consideration, meaning the people willing to bid lowest may likely get the job – and these people are often not the best able to do the job.

    Another consideration mentioned that I agree with – how will this impact Toolset development – will this portal distract from Toolset’s core business and perhaps take resources away from that? If so then imo it’s a bad idea.

    Having said that, this could work if implemented correctly. But how on earth do you implement it correctly so as to address all concerns is the question.

    • Although I am a user and not a developer, I agree with everything Athlone says. Having said that, if I could choose between a jobs board or a more thorough description of the different tools and how they integrate, I would prefer the latter. As a user, I have been working with toolset for more than a year and it is not until know, I understand what a great (rather than confusing) product it is.

  10. – For clients, this is a great thing. They can choose the cheapest offer.
    – For me as a contractor, I prefer to look for a customer who, in addition to the cheapest opferty, will take into account the scope and quality.

  11. I think its a great idea, and something which should help contractors and clients alike. Not only that, but if any software supplier should try this out it should be Toolset. You do, after all, have all the tools you need already in the box plus the expertise to create such a facility in a jot.

    While you plan your input functionality, for clients to post their jobs, you will want to maintain that crucial balance between keeping it simple for them to do yet still informative enough for us contractors to see and understand which jobs are best suited to us. Your skills of form design, data input, conditional fields (perhaps) and the flexibility to experiment and test the input mechanism will be key to this… as it will for the response and job application process.

    So you have a few things to consider to make this really useful but, knowing Toolset, I’m sure you will do it really well. So please do – even as an experiment to begin with – I, for one, can see it becoming a vital facility for clients and contractors alike.

  12. I love the Idea!

    I have used services like this in the past where service providers did this. To mind comes 99Designs but this would be different. I recently reached out to a few Toolset contractors and either my project wasn’t something they were interested in or their pricing was more than I could budget and so going down the list trying to find another that “I thought” was qualified was so time consuming that I had to put it off and never came back to it and started looking for other options.

    Fantastic Ideas! I Vote YES!

  13. In my opinion the usability of this job platform depends on wheter it’s for small projects (e.g. adding a feature) or larger projects that include the whole setup of toolset (types, views, layouts, …).

    For the smaller projects I don’t see any benefit posting them here. For that we have Codeable or WP Kraken. However for larger projects I think it could work.

    I’m just asking myself, who’s going to place projects here? Agencys probably only need some help for specific tasks from time to time (-> small project), and end-users probably will go with an agency before posting a job here, right? Maybe I’m wrong.

    So from my point of view, I don’t see much value in such a job platform – but why not launch a prototype and look how it’s going?

  14. This would be great idea as sometimes we need help in our projects where toolset is used.

  15. This sounds like a good idea with the best intensions. For this particular case, however, I don’t know if this works out well for the developers side.

    Toolset is for mostly developers and know by mostly developers. What are the chances of an average client, who probably knows little about WordPress let alone a developer’s tool like Toolset, to find such a platform to post a job? I can imagine for every job post, there’ll be a feeding frenzy by 100 developers bidding for it. I’ll be waisting time hunting for projects.

  16. I think this idea may be useful. What I would find most useful is being able to “purchase” modules, css styled filters, or views that other developers / contractors have created.

    In particular, Toolset Views filters require a lot of CSS to configure nicely. Some developers have been able to implement these really well. I find myself frequently contacting developers for info / snippets on designing filters.

    It would be great if the ability to buy modules / or snippets, or alternatively contact contractors to provide these modules to us.

  17. The idea is not bad, but I think you should also keep the option to let the Toolset clients contact contractors individually. Like this, the Toolset client can choose what way he would like to go – if budget is an issue, he can look for the best priced and has to deal with a lot of proposals. Otherwise he contacts Contractors on his own, one bye one based on his needs.

  18. Brilliant Idea, but backed up with a ‘scoring’ system to allow us to be ranked by years experience, installs, questions asked, questions answered & previous client rating – only way to stop the ‘race to the bottom’ others have mentioned.

  19. Hi,there, The idea is so Ideal for both parties and this is easy way to communication with each others but otherwise.kooking foeward your business.

  20. Yet another Job Board like Fivr &Co.? Does this justify the efforts?

    I personally would prefer if you invest the efforts in improving Toolset to let us build better and more feature rich sites.

    For example a calendar and chart module for Views would be a great start 🙂

  21. This is almost what you can call it wasting the developer time instead of focusing on finishing the real challenge like:

    1. Finishing the membership updates:
    https://toolset.com/2018/08/need-more-power-for-toolset-membership-sites/
    2.Add more BLOCK modules for toolset :
    https://toolset.com/2018/09/how-toolsets-new-modules-will-make-it-easier-for-you-to-add-important-features-to-websites/
    3. UX UI enhancement to make it more flexible and user friendly.
    4. Full workflow system capabilities with CRED forms (Multi-step -Multi page).
    5. Frontend Client Area and Profile MODULE with Login/Logout/Change Password.
    6. Deep integration with Gutenberg.
    7. Step by step getting-started videos as case study web site showing all Toolset features.

    • Thank you for this feedback. We are aware of the pending features and you probably know that Toolset receives major features on every release. The upcoming release of Toolset Forms includes a completely new drag-and-drop editor. We are now in the process of complete integration with Gutenberg, allowing to build templates with dynamic fields.

      This work on the contractors system doesn’t take anything out of our development capacity. Peter from our marketing team is creating this entire system USING Toolset plugins.

  22. I am a Toolset customer and for me it’s a very good idea!
    I had to do everything myself my business starts to grow thanks to Toolset …
    It is time for me to be in contact and find people who are more competent than me.

  23. More ways to find us is better. More creative solutions may appear.

    Most of the jobs or possible jobs that have come to me have been requested by advanced Toolset users, having to add PHP or JavaScript code.

  24. I would rather clients contact me than be part of a “bidding process”, which usually ends up being a race to the bottom. It’s easy for you to have developer listings, but once you get into bidding and such, that seems like a diversion from your core business. That’s my two cents.

  25. Not sure if we need a whole new system. I’d rather see a place on the current system to list what areas of Toolset you specialize in, and have a way to sort by that. Thanks for asking!

    • Your suggestion for the existing system makes perfect sense and goes inline with other suggestions: filtering by country and ability to contact more than one contractor. We will discuss it and the implementation should be quick.

  26. Hi, This is something we need and I already created something like this on our site with Toolset but it would be more optimal if it was created by you and would perform better. The need we have is for a customer to post a project for which only the title and a small description is available to every visitor and only member can access the full job opportunity details and contact info. Also admin need to approve posting of the offer. The user data need to be available for the post without having to enter the data over and over in all job post (call for proposal).

  27. HI all. Personally, I would have already used it if it were available. And to respond to the concerns of the developers about the ‘race to the bottom’ – as I client I am not loking for the cheapest hourly rate, but the best match for my project: somebody who has the necessary skills, who speaks the language that I need, ideally who is local to me so we can meet up and talk now and then, somebody who works in similar timezone to the one I work in, somebody who is available when I need them to be, whose interests match the needs of my project (long term support? business development? or a one off problem solving?) and so on. I think only clients who have absolutely no prior experience in a project development may be tempted by the cheapest price, everybody else will be looking at other factors as well.

  28. @peterS-14, Toolset have already said they see no future in implementing a calendar (although many of us would like it and requested it many times) and that is why I have suggested this idea (of a request for proposals board) where we can ask the whole group of developers instead of asking 60 separate people. The thought of contacting 40+ contractors that will each have 20 questions and then perhaps some, or who knows even most might not want to tackle it would be wasting some time. For the record, another thing I have suggested (but met with little enthusiasm) is for Toolset users to group buy some custom work such as a calendar that they could use (whereby they own it as they have payed the development costs). So I will be the first to ask. Is anyone capable of developing a Toolset Calendar that would integrate fully with Toolset posts etc for events, memberships, training website etc? That would not be currently available as a existing plugin hack? This would include classroom bookings, equipment rental etc and be viewed as a true calendar and not a view of a list (although that would also be required). Maybe there is also a way in the future for developers to also sell Toolset components such as a Toolset Calendar on a marketplace.

  29. As an agency owner, somewhat developer and a site owner I would find this extremely useful. I often find myself outsourcing parts of projects when I need to, particularly related to toolset as I have not quite mastered this. It would be great if I could post even a small thing I need help with and of course for larger projects.

    As for price I agree that many will go to lower offers. These are clients that you arguably don’t want to work with. I am someone who regularly hires contractors for their portfolio, communication, and proven ability to work. I like to test with small projects and then proceed with larger ones. I think a very important aspect of this would be to have a review/ rating service for the contractors and possibly set this up so that work goes through the toolset site and payment is made upon acceptance of the work. Check out legiit.com for an example of good place where lots of agency owners go for various web dev and seo services. However, this marketplace is built in the opposite way, with vendors offering services, rather than clients offering work.

  30. The issue is not whether developers would like this idea but having enough people post jobs on it to make it worth the effort to spend time managing your listing.

    Most will have no idea about CPT or Toolset, they just want a website. The ones that do post are probably feeling out for pricing or are just starting out to build a business so I don’t see much work being generated here.

    Overall I think time could be better spent on Toolset integration to Elementor and other builders.

  31. Yes I like the idea. It would be easier for me to post a small job. What I REALLY would love is a community forum where members help out each other with “how to” questions. I use lots of audio software and they all have such forums which are so helpful rather then always contacting support….

  32. I HAVE BEEN WANTING THIS FEATURE FOREVER.

    Every time I look for extra help from Toolset developers I waste time picking the companies to contact, when I would just like to post a job and have them contact me if they are interested/a good fit. I have wasted time contacting contractors who are currently too busy to accept new work, etc.

    PLEASE IMPLEMENT THIS FEATURE!!

    • Regardless the community decision on implementing job board we will improve the current contractors’ search by adding more search options. On top of that, we will allow sending an inquiry to more than one contractor at once.

  33. I don’t find it so important.
    I believe that the outcome of such a portal will be minor. I
    think it is more important to focus on product development, and get the products integrated with another properly .

  34. I have enough work between referrals from my own customers and customers that find me through things like the existing Toolset contractors feature that I would not likely check the jobs board for jobs very often.

    I also find jobs boards in general become a race to the bottom in that they enable a lowest bidder wins approach where price gets put before quality. I’ve stopped participating in most jobs and gigs boards because of this.

    When a customer approaches me from the Toolset Contractor pages, our conversation begins with their real needs and my thoughts on how to help them. I can give them some free tips to try for smaller issues and offer my paid services for larger issues all while building my reputation and inspiring more referrals in the future. I prefer that approach and wouldn’t be as comfortable sharing free advice in a public jobs board.

    • I agree with this. We get a few requests a month from people via the current setup and they’ve picked us specifically for what we say that we do. We’re happy to help these clients out, but we’re busy enough that there is no way that we would spend our time scanning job boards and bidding on projects.

      This would actually encourage me to remove myself from the contractors list because I don’t want to spend my time filtering through mostly bad leads.

      In my experience there are quite a few people contacting me that do not have a lot of experience, so them knowing how to choose a good developer to help them out is not something they’re going to know how to do.

      I also think this this could end up reflecting badly on your product if clients are choosing the lowest priced contractor (just because they don’t know what to look for) and getting what they pay for. They will end up thinking that your product is bad because the developer they choose may not be the best.

      I think refining your current system would be a better bet. Add more features to make the system more user friendly for clients searching for contractors. That could be letting people filter by country for starters as there are quite a few more contractors in the database than there used to be.

      You could also add a feature to let people message multiple contractors at once – but up to a certain limit – maybe 5. It could be that some contractors don’t respond or aren’t a fit so being able to message a few could be helpful.

      • Thank you for your suggestions. Filtering by country and by Toolset components is something that we can implement quickly to add missing functionalities to the existing contractor system.

        Those suggestions are the most repetitive ones and clearly show benefits for both parties: clients and contractors.

  35. FYI to the admins, I couldn’t comment here without logging in first. It looked like it would let me and then told me I didn’t enter a valid email address – except there was no field to enter an email address.

    • Currently, contractors can submit their showcase entries and accurately describe the work done. A showcase is linked to the contractor profile which can be then contacted directly. Is this what you are suggesting?

  36. I’ve tried a few times to make a project board to use toolset as a client portal and the major thing that was always missing is more granular control of which pages users can view. Since then, I bought WP Client Portal but I would much prefer the flexibility of toolset.

  37. While I initially thought the current system (Developers listing skills) was rather backwards, I agree that creating the proposed client task posting environment might very well create bidding wars. There are definitely people with very low budgets for web development. Speaking of which, would this new board be available to only paid Toolset Suite customers, or to anyone? I can see where people posting requests for help who are using only the free parts (e.g., Types 2.x) could create confusion.

    As a few others have suggested, I suggest creating a simple skeletal board along the proposed ideas (not too fancy,) and give it a 2 or 3 month trial period and see how that goes.

    And to those who keep posting they would rather see the development efforts focused on the main Toolset components, I am quite certain the development of those would not be affected. Amir?

    • Yes, this project can be developed in parallel without affecting any Toolset components.

  38. I agree with @henrikG and others here that this is not core to Toolset and is a distraction. This idea duplicates existing more complete sites where projects can be posted (e.g. Upwork).

    …unless you tell us that you’ll start charging money for what is proposed and that money will fund more devs on the Toolset team.

    Instead why don’t you have a marketing person work with Upwork and others like it to set up Toolset expertise as a thing. You can then refer people over there and perhaps get a commission – which in turn may help better Toolset. Further you’d be getting Toolset out into the wider developer community.

    • Our ultimate goal is to land more jobs for Toolset contractors while making it easy for clients to find suitable contractors. Form the feedback we got so far there are a few things that we will add to the current system like searching by country, Toolset component but also ability to send the same request to more than one contractor at one time.

      At the same time, we are actively working on partnerships with freelance portals. We haven’t announced it yet, but we have established Toolset competence tag with Codable.

      If the community decides for some kind of job board, it will not come at the expense of core Toolset development.

  39. I like the current system very much, where I’m contacted directly by prospective clients via email. If there were a job board, I wouldn’t be likely to check it.

    • Thanks for your comment, we are looking for ways to improve it further and there are some good suggestions mentioned above: filtering by country, contacting more than one contractor at once just to mention those.

  40. Like the idea! Even though Ive got a good Toolset dev I use regularly (found through the existing contractor page) Id love to be able to submit the more minor jobs for bidding.

  41. Product development would be good, eg bulk image upload on forms, with some modern reordering functionality. Even just integrating the backend wordpress image upload on the front end would be more useful to a lot of people.

  42. Not really interested. Lerning is more important to me than selling. Why not create a LinkedIn or Slack group to get in touch with fellow developers?

    • We have Facebook groups for users and developers and we welcome everyone to join. The groups are open to all sorts of discussions and are meant for exchanging ideas and knowledge sharing between Toolset users.

  43. I think this is a great idea. I am a newish user of Toolset and I am not yet able to build everything I need without help. I have drunk the Toolset Kool-aid so I use the Toolset contractor directory exclusively for my searches. I have wasted a lot of time trying to find contractors capable of building anything other than a brochure site with Toolset.

    An equally large problem is when I do find a contractor capable of doing the work I need, they aren’t able to allocate enough time to my project. It would be great if I could submit a request for proposal (“RFP”) along with a rough due date and rough budget.

    Other commenters have worried about a race to the bottom in terms of price. I disagree; I would happily pay more for help from an experienced Toolset contractor capable of delivering a quality result on time and on budget.

  44. While Toolset makes it so much easier to build things like sliders, carousels, login/registration systems, lightbox solutions, complex search filters, I so often feel like often I am re-inventing the whee by building these with like 1 or 2 minor modifications, and see form the forums that so many others seem to be doing the same. The same questions and needs keep recurring, and I can often find the answer after extensive searching, testing some solutions, asking my own questions, and iterating. Takes a lot of time I’d prefer paying someone else to do.

    So I think a job board is a great idea, but also with developers who have “Base” solutions for things like the above functionality, that save me the time of searching/implementing and them the time of going from scratch.

    So for example. So many need woocommerce subscriptions built into their Toolset site. The solutions are all similar but each has a few tweaks or extra needs. So a developer who has a pre-built woo/toolset solution could come in with that and easily make the modifications for my particular site.

    Not sure if this makes sense, but it’s basically something like the Devs offer pre-built modules already on offer but far more extensive and then offer their skills/time integrating it for me. I’d be paying for their pre-built solution plus the time they need to customize.

    Tim

  45. Hey, I suppose this is a good idea, since it is another way the customers can contact with contractors, but for me the main problem is how a customer can select the best contractor for his needs. In my opinion, there current system hasn’t relevant criterias to select the best contractor.

    The only real filter to select a good contractor should be a good comments/rating system, so the satisfied (or not) customer can write about his experience with the contractor.

    cheers

  46. My opinion is – It will be useful for everyone and it’s a great move. I have often seen posts on FB in some very popular user community where people looking for help related to Toolset or Custom Post Types. So this would certainly help those people (client or developer or agency or freelancers). This would be a good organised approach to hire Toolset experts.

    I am also interested in it because it will be built using Toolset. There will be lot to learn from that. Recently I built a Job Portal website for one of my client using Toolset. The site has posted more than 1, 42,000 jobs (CPT using Toolset). It was a great challenge to see how Toolset and WordPress are performing efficiently for big sites like this. This also gave me a great confidence for using Toolset on any future big project. Here big means lots and lots of user generated data.

    I have seen comments where some members have raised concerns regarding pricing! Well that is a genuine concern but I think clients are smart enough to distinguish between cheap price vs quality work. So instead of thinking negative on this we should be ready to explore the positive part of it. I am sure a positive approach to this will help Toolset Community to grow. My best wishes to Toolset Team & community.

    • @krishnaT – Are you currently taking on more Toolset projects? I’m looking for someone to implement a Job Board on a site I have just begun, and from your post it looks like you already have the expertise here. (tim.spino @ gmail .com)