The IAPWE stands for International Association of Professional Writers & Editors. This group has become known for providing helpful resources to freelance writers and editors as well as a reliable source for higher paying freelance work.
As with all work from home or online freelancing opportunities (and even though this is an association for writers), we used the same main criteria in evaluating whether or not this is a legitimate money-making opportunity.
No Up Front Payment or Investment Required – 5/5
This is one of the more important and primary criteria that we look at when evaluating a work from home opportunity. We were pleased to find that the IAPWE does not require any type of payment or investment in order to be eligible to acquire work. We have seen many other opportunities online that promise paid work, only to then require some form of payment as part of the introduction or initiation process to then become eligible for work. This was not the case with the IAPWE.
While the primary focus of this review will be the work opportunities with the IAPWE, they also offer free resources and tools for freelancers as well as higher levels of service and resources as part of some optional paid memberships that are available. We have received some emails from applicants asking if they need to sign up for one of the optional paid memberships in order to be eligible for work. During the signup process, we found the the IAPWE offered these optional paid memberships as something separate from the work opportunities with the IAPWE, so this means that you would not have to select any paid memberships in order to be eligible to work for their association. We feel that this is an important distinction to note.
We also found it to be a positive sign that the IAPWE offers a free membership that comes with the aforementioned resources and tools for freelance writers and editors, in addition to their work opportunities.
Transparent Terms, Signup and Cancelation Processes – 5/5
The second main aspect that we look at when evaluating the legitimacy of a work opportunity is the overall transparency (or lack thereof) of the terms and signup process. Something that frequently makes us wary is if the terms of the work opportunity or the signup process as a whole is vague or not clear. This usually means that there is a lack of an actual opportunity and therefore the entire process is intentionally made vague.
We found the signup process with the IAPWE to be straightforward and pretty seamless. The signup form requires some basic information from the freelancer, including preferred topics or areas of expertise. Before the signup process is complete, the optional paid memberships are made available. At this point, it is also outlined that these optional memberships are processed using PayPal and a link is also provided for prospective members to use to cancel, should they wish to do so at any point.
One more note about the paid memberships, is that the IAPWE has a ‘cancel anytime’ policy, so does not try to lock paid members into any long term obligations or financial commitments. Another positive sign.
Once the signup process was complete and the registration form submitted, we received several membership confirmation emails, as well as an invitation to the cloud portal where the IAPWE assigns all of their writing and editing tasks.
This process was also straightforward and fairly easy to navigate. Once we confirmed the membership emails and the invitation, we were set up and ready to get started assigning ourselves work.
Ease of Assigning Work and Receiving Payment – 4/5
We have found some work opportunities that claim to offer work and, upon signing up, the nature of the work or the conditions under which the work are assigned turn out to be significantly different from what was originally presented to applicants. For example, the nature of the work may require more of a time investment than was initially represented, or the pay be lower with certain benchmarks or conditions that need to be met in order to receive payouts (none of which was mentioned during the application process).
With the IAPWE, the work mainly involves content; either written or edited. One of the issues we have found with some other content-oriented job opportunities, is that the pay rate will be lower than originally advertised, or the requirements by the content managers or editors will be extreme such that it is difficult to get content approved for payment.
We only completed one task for the IAPWE, however we found the senior editor who reviewed the piece to be communicative and responsive and the pay rate was the same as what had originally been advertised.
Another issue that we watch out for is if payment is delayed or otherwise diverted for any number of reasons. After completing the minor revision request from the editor and resubmitting the piece, payment was sent our one week later. Overall, the entire process seemed to be straightforward and without any issues.
Communication and Responsiveness – 5/5
The IAPWE scored a 5 out of 5 in this area, due to the fact that when we reached out to IAPWE staff on two separate occasions (once during signup and once regarding an assignment), we received responses the following business day.
Responsiveness can be telling of how serious a company or organization is. If it takes days or weeks to receive a response from an employer, this may indicate that they do not take their employees or contractors seriously or that the entire operation is not being handled optimally.
We also noticed that the IAPWE has a high response rate on their Facebook page, which is another positive indicator in this area.
Overall, we found the IAPWE to be responsive to our inquiries and have seen this sentiment reflected in other comments and reviews online.
Overall Experience Working for the IAPWE – 4/5
While we only completed on piece of content so as to fully test the entire experience of working for the IAPWE from signup to receiving payment, our experience was a positive one.
The IAPWE’s pay rate initially almost seemed too good to be true, however we found that the pay rate advertised was indeed the actual rate of pay, however there is a catch.
Since completing our first piece of content for the IAPWE, we have regularly checked back on the IAPWE’s assignment portal to get an idea regarding what type of content tasks were available and what kind of volume of work was available. So far we have found the volume of work to be highly variable, changing from week to week. Sometimes the volume seems to spike such that there were multiple assignments going unclaimed by freelancers due to their not being enough to assign all of the tasks, and other weeks there were significant down periods with little to no work available.
We do not feel that this reflects on the overall legitimacy of this work opportunity, however it is something that we feel freelancers may want to keep in mind as some may be seeking to use these types of work opportunities to replace full time jobs. We don’t see this as a realistic option when freelancing for the IAPWE. This could be part of the IAPWE’s model to maintain a consistent ability to get content completed for their own clients, since by having a large pool of part-time freelancers available, they never have to become dependent upon a handful that may or may not be available at any given point in time.
Another thing that have heard, is that some freelancers were complaining that they applied to work for the IAPWE and never heard back. On the application page we used, it was mentioned that applicants may only hear back from the IAPWE if they are accepted for the position. We are not sure if the IAPWE puts this notice on all of their application pages, so this may also be something to consider when applying.
One more thing we did not mention earlier regarding the application process, is that the IAPWE does not require any unique or original writing/editing samples. In other words, you are free to submit previously used samples as part of your application. It is for this reason, as well as the fact that we found the IAPWE to be a real working opportunity, that we would recommend other freelancers apply if the IAPWE is hiring at the time of reading this review. While the signup and registration process took a bit of time, the application process was brief, requiring only a name, email address and previously completed sample of work to submit.
While the IAPWE was not the most lucrative of work opportunities that we have reviewed so far, we did find them to be a real and valid source of freelance work.