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What Milestones should I specify?

Milestones are key dates in the job schedule in which work deliverables can be reviewed, approved, and paid for. Jobs may be set up with a single milestone (the final result) or with as many interim steps along the way as needed. Milestones can be used to link payments with actual deliverables, or can be used simply as pre-scheduled checkpoints to help with progress and communication.

Examples of milestones: 

Example: Logo design project Delivery Date Amount
Milestone 1: Start fee deposit (today's date) $75
Milestone 2: 6 concepts 10 Nov 2014 $75
Milestone 3: 1st Revision of chosen concept 15 Nov 2014 $75
Milestone 4: 2nd Revision of chosen concept 20 Nov 2014 $75
Final: Delivery of final print-ready files 24 Nov 2014 $100
Total:   $400


Example: Microsoft Access project Delivery Date Amount
Milestone 1: Initial schema design 10 Nov 2014 $200
Milestone 2: Implementation                              15 Nov 2014 $200
Milestone 3: QA 24 Nov 2014 $200
Final: Release/Final Product 30 Nov 2014 $200
Total:   $800

If the Milestone funds have not been released, the Milestone can be reduced or deleted, dates changed, and name and description edited.  Both parties should communicate in the Workroom to negotiate and document any modification to the Terms. Changes to Terms are not considered active until accepted by both parties.

Congratulations on hiring a Freelancer for your job and finalizing business terms! It’s now time to fund the first project Milestone so your Freelancer can start work!

To fund a job milestone, log in to your Elance account and follow the steps below:

  1. Roll over Manage in the top navigation bar and then select Payments from the drop down list.
  2. Next, click Make Payment located on the left side of the page.
  3. Select the radio button to the left of the job name you want to fund and click Next.
  4. On the Payments page, click Fund for your particular milestone.  
  5. Select your payment method, enter any comments and click Fund.

The Freelancer will receive a notification when you fund job Milestones. Remember, the Freelancer is not obligated to begin work until at least one job milestone has been funded.

Once you have selected a Freelancer and awarded your job, you will be prompted to review and update Terms and Milestones.  After sending the Terms to the Freelancer, you have the option of funding the Escrow account.  This is referred to as "prefunding" since you are depositing funds into Escrow before the Freelancer accepts the Terms.  

The advantage to prefunding the Escrow account is that it will help the job begin immediately if the Freelancer accepts the job and makes no changes to the Terms or Milestones. If the Freelancer declines the Terms or makes any changes, the funds in Escrow are automatically refunded to the payment source.  

Prefunding also applies to Terms changes.  If you make a change to the Terms such as adding a milestone, you can immediately fund the new Milestone prior to the Freelancer accepting the change.  As above, if the Freelancer declines the change, the funds are automatically refunded to the original payment source.

Prefunding is completely optional.  If you chose not to prefund the milestone, you can send the Terms to your Freelancer and fund the milestone once the Terms agreement is finalized.  You will be notified when the Freelancer accepts or declines the Terms.

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