Josh Pennington: “From my experience working on the Peerwith platform, I can offer potential clients several tips for selecting the proper expert and ensuring that the collaboration goes as smoothly as possible.”
- The global market rate for light copy editing – which involves proofreading for typos and spelling errors as well as minor formatting corrections –, is somewhere in the ballpark of .01-.02 cents per word, depending on the content of the text. If this is the service you need, then be absolutely sure to specify this in your post. This also goes for heavy language editing, which runs from .03 – .05 cents, depending on language level. You should always provide an accurate word count in your post, as this is what experts use to calculate their bids. You may also specify the need for expedited work, which will affect bids by generally .01 – .02 cents. Precise, clear instructions at the outset are critical in finding the best expert match for your needs.
- If you are on a “student” or “lecturer” budget, and therefore cannot offer the standard market rate, be honest. Many editors have a soft spot for academics in rough financial straights (many of us are academics ourselves and can easily empathize!). More importantly, don’t be afraid of the bid negotiation process. By ignoring offers that are above the budget you’ve set, you risk potentially alienating yourself from that expert for any future work. Always be kind and respond to all the offers you get, even if you find them “offensively” high. Moreover, depending on how far below the standard price you set your budget (and how often you do this), you can risk missing your deadline and even worse, not being taken seriously. Peerwith experts come from various academic backgrounds, including PhDs, lawyers, MDs, etc. We expect clients on Peerwith to be serious scholars who value quality and can thus pay the standard rate, at minimum, unless explicitly stated otherwise.
- Please specify accurately your level of English. When a bid is made, often experts trust the clients’ own judgements of their English. However, I’ve had several situations where the language is much worse than initially indicated, which would have affected the bid considerably (in one case). As in point 2 above, such miscommunication can severely hamper a project and result in receiving a bad rating on Peerwith.
- The Ratings system – This is the best aspect of Peerwith, I believe. Not only can clients rate experts and vice versa, but they can leave comments as well. This keeps the experts performing at a high level. Therefore, it can be soul-crushing for an expert to receive below a 5-star rating, especially for a job well done. If you are satisfied with the expert’s work, leave the perfect rating and a specific comment about the quality of work done; the more detail, the better. Finally, If any of the issues discussed in points 1-3 apply, then backtrack and try to find a mutually beneficially solution. Lowered ratings is bad for all sides.