Hire-a-designer To Become Design With Shapeways

Discussion in 'Official Announcements' started by que_sarah_sarah, Apr 19, 2018.

  1. Hello Shapeways Community,

    Today we are kicking off improvements to the way designers and customers connect on Shapeways.

    We know that the Hire a Designer feature is important to you. It is the place where many of you display your professional portfolios and find clients for 3D modeling. We have also heard from you that it could be better, with more features and functionality.

    That’s why today we have good news! We are currently working to rebuild this feature from the ground up. We want you to be informed with what is happening, so here is how it is going to play out.

    Our new Design with Shapeways page gives us a chance to take a clearer approach for customers looking for a 3D modelling and build a more efficient system for designers to get and manage jobs.

    While we are announcing Design with Shapeways today, it is still very much a work in progress. We want to include you in that process.

    Please sign up here if you would like to be involved with Design with Shapeways (even if you are already registered on Hire a Designer). In the coming weeks and months we will test, improve, and expand Design with Shapeways. As we do we will bring registered designers into the program.

    While we build this new section of the website, existing professional portfolios will still be available on the Shapeways website and the Hire a Designer page. Customers who find you via your Shapeways shop will still be able to contact you.

    We are excited about Design with Shapeways and hope you will be too. Thank you for your patience and support through these changes.

    - The Shapeways Team
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2018
  2. DiegoAramburu
    DiegoAramburu Member
    I want to thanks to you all!!!

    Im getting in touch with really good professionals.

    Thanks for your efforts!
    Model_Monkey likes this.
  3. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    Great! I agree that it's very highly needed for Shapeways to get further involved with this!

    What would be really cool is if Shapeways would handle the monetary aspect of it as well! Or at the very least some kind of registration process that involves proving identity. You know to weed out those guys that make fake profiles for the purpose of making fake requests and not paying for work done and causing designers to become discouraged and ultimately causing the competition to be depleted. You know who you are and I know who you are too. :)

    Shapeways could take a cut if Shapeways handled the financial transactions and I'd gladly pay for the service.

    One thing you guys forgot to implement in the last version was a means for telling potential customers that we'd be out of service, like if we wanted to go on vacation or something like that. Just some kind of nice looking notice would be great, sort of like how Etsy has things set up for shops that are away.
    EvieL likes this.
  4. EvieL
    EvieL Well-Known Member
    Great idea! Would love to join the league of designers when i get better and faster with my 3d modeling skills. For now I'd love to hear more about the Spring Wonder idea and how that impacts jewelry designers.
    UniverseBecoming likes this.
  5. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    Sounds like a good idea to me! I generally have customers contact me directly after seeing my shop with requests related to items in various categories - like if they like my miniature skyscrapers, they'll request a building I haven't created yet or ask for a different scale of an existing building. I've done quite a few commissions that way but I'm unsure how many of them come from the designer section.

    The only suggestion I have would be to have some way of letting a designer know that a customer found us through that page - like maybe a note on the initial message we receive that says "referred from "Design with Shapeways".

    Personally though, I'm fine dealing with customers and handling monetary aspects on my own, no need for SW to get involved there as far as I'm concerned. I'm pretty good at spotting people who will waste my time and since I ask for a deposit up front before getting started and am communicative with clients throughout the process, I have yet to encounter someone who has wasted my time in this manner.

    Although a feedback system could be super useful to inform potential clients and to rank designers so the better we are at creating models and handling customer requests, the higher our rating, and we get rewarded with front page exposure :)
  6. SnoozeAlongSnail
    SnoozeAlongSnail Well-Known Member
    Interesting! Looking forward to hearing more about this :)
  7. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    I don't like charging a retainer fee. It makes me feel like a lawyer. :p

    Seriously though, I don't like doing that because it makes me feel like I'm making them prove that they're serious. I've never had a problem elsewhere, only Shapeways.
  8. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    That's fair enough, if things go smoothly the vast majority of the time then I suppose it's not a necessity but I think it's good practice to establish a level of commitment between myself and a client. If I've taken a deposit, I've not only cemented their commitment to working with me, but I've obligated myself to work with them as they've already paid me a portion of the project fee.

    But aside from that, I look at it like this - in any creative profession, the work is a combination of skill, time and quality, and each project is usually unique to the client. This means that not only is our ability to do the work valuable but every minute we spend applying that ability to a given project for a given client is basically our overhead. We may not be spending literal money but where time=money then spending hours creating a first draft of a model for a client only to have them decide they no longer want our services (maybe they found someone who was willing to work for less or they're second guessing their reasons), that's time and skill wasted and what we have as a result is a model that will have very little to no use outside of moving forward with that client - it's time we could have spent on another client that was committed to working with us.

    I've never had a prospective client raise an issue when I asked for a deposit and most of them understand why I do it, but to each their own. For the record, I only ask for a deposit with new clients, or on large projects. If I've worked with someone regularly and they come back with more projects then I usually don't ask for a deposit since they clearly were satisfied with my work and are very intentionally hiring me personally. With a new client, however, there's an element of uncertainty for both parties and while the client can file a PayPal claim to get their money back, a modeler/designer/artist has no such protection or way of rolling back the clock on time wated.
  9. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    Fortunately, in my case, I never wasted any time since when I'm in the mood for it I work for free. When I'm not working on anything of my own I take on jobs completely for free just so I can keep my workflow knowledge for the software I use fresh in my mind at all times. This causes quite a bit rage in those doing freelance 3D modeling as a source of income because I take their job prospects from them at times here at Shapeways. This caused me to become targeted and from my experiences over a few years, I've learned that there are unscrupulous freelance 3D modelers and designers in the Shapeways community who could use their reckless attitude to take advantage of others in the community.

    Ideally, if everyone charged a fee to start work then there would be no need for Shapeways' intervention, but the thing is, whether or not a person charges a startup fee is highly variable. Some do and some don't and there is no way make sure everyone does. What can be done though is for Shapeways get in the middle and moderate the process so that everyone is treated fairly because no one can take advantage of anyone if Shapeways is involved.
  10. JoyComplex
    JoyComplex Active Member
    What's wrong with feeling like a lawyer? It's the one profession that everyone hates until they need one.
  11. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    To me, your particular issue seems to be a select few sour modelers who don't approve of your pro bono activity. I can't say I blame them for being upset as there is enough competition out there without people doing it for free (everyone and their mother can obtain free and easy-to-use software these days), but that's why I focus on being good at what I do instead of being bitter about it. They should take a cue from some actual professionals and spend more time refining their skills and creating impressive models to attract new clients and less time trolling you lol. But I hardly see how this feature would prevent that, especially when you don't require any sort of commitment whatsoever from a client for the work you do. Would there be a feedback system for designers to rate clients and would Shapeways resort to banning members who flake out of agreements when money isn't involved?
  12. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    It is centered around fake profiles. A fake profile can be created in 2 minutes here on Shapeways. So, to get around that all Shapeways would need to do is collect banking information which is not likely to be faked. They would not try to do anything malicious if Shapeways knows who they are.

    It's not just me. Over the years there have been posts in the forum from people making complaints of not being paid or being treated unfairly. Not a lot, but there have been a few.

    Joycom I love lawers! :D I probably would have been a lawyer if I were smarter in my left brain functionality. That bit of humor was more along the lines of how lawyers are super formal whereas we're talking about casual freelance work. :)
  13. Mohsen_Abbasi
    Mohsen_Abbasi Well-Known Member

    And please avoid the mistake again, addind people to a category, just because they ask for that. When you choose the filter "product design" in hire a designer, you will see a loooot in the list who have no idea about product design. They are bad for the customers and us.

    Let everyone proof what they are, what they studies, what the did and reviews of customer on their own websides.

    They must proof something

    Someone who makes a smal part for his room and thought he/she is now a real product designer, must not be able to join. Seriosly, this is not ok

    I talked about this here and everywhere else

  14. Mohsen_Abbasi
    Mohsen_Abbasi Well-Known Member
    start this section carefully and correct
  15. JoyComplex
    JoyComplex Active Member
    I figured. I was an attorney for years and though I decided to get out of the game I still have stick up for us mealy mouthed folk!
  16. Ontogenie
    Ontogenie Well-Known Member
    I agree with you completely, Mohsen. Shapeways needs to strenuously curate Designer for Hire to remove people who don't have the experience to get the job done and as a result give all designers at Shapeways a bad reputation. Hopefully "Design with Shapeways" will solve that problem.
    Peter3D likes this.
  17. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    That's where a feedback system would be helpful. It could be programmed to limit feedback for only those who have gone through "Design With Shapeways" to hire designers so that once the project is complete, they can give them a rating, comment, etc. It could work sort of like reviewing projects on Amazon or transactions on eBay. And then the designer can rate and comment on their experience with the person who hired them. No better way for someone to prove their ability than by action!
  18. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    What about a rating system coupled with a bidding system? Like uShip.com. With uShip, when you want to ship something you just post what it is you want to ship, where it is and where it's going, and then carriers post bids on what they'll ship it for. It works great!

    Here again, though, Shapeways would need to mediate because people could just create fake profiles, use those fake profiles to hire themselves, and then give themselves good ratings.
    Silvanus likes this.
  19. DoctorOctoroc
    DoctorOctoroc Well-Known Member
    That's a good point. Like shill bidding on ebay. Perhaps then Shapeways mediating the transactions, or building a UI through which money is exchanged, would be ideal - then the PayPal fees might dissuade people from paying themselves for jobs to get good feedback. Or at least they could dedicate a team to sniffing out 'fraud' and cracking down on the culprits. There could also be a documentation of the work that was done with an image of the model commissioned so they'd also be forced to build a model to have appear there. If Shapeways could determine that the model made for the commission was one already in their shop then that's one way they could see if it was suspect. Maybe have a 'report' option so people can notify Shapeways of shady dealings? I dunno, it's hard to crack down on that type of activity...
    Silvanus likes this.
  20. UniverseBecoming
    UniverseBecoming Well-Known Member
    Good points!