As someone who lived through the Harrisco hard times, I feel I need to send a current review from my perspective.
First of all, yes, Harrisco had a difficult time paying their workers in the past. I started with Harrisco in November of 2018 and am still there. I am a US freelancer and work about 40 hours a week. The pay issue has been resolved for about a year and I think that other proofreaders should reconsider working for them. Let me address some of the concerns in previous reviews.
For the first year, I was to be paid monthly for work completed the previous month. Some pay arrived on time, some was paid in part, and some was delayed. It was very frustrating for me and the company was very upfront about their financial difficulties. We eventually worked out a payment process where I continued to work part-time and get paid while my current pay and the back pay owed was paid to me. I received every penny owed to me.
Now, I am paid daily for my work. The arrangement works wonderfully for both of us and if they do stop paying, we both know that I will not submit any more work.
As far as the pay goes…while I was waiting for my back pay, I accepted freelance work with three other companies, one American, one Chinese, and one was international. All were very tightly structured and paid regularly, but I need to set the record straight on some freelance proofreading expectations.
At all the other companies, the pay per page was comparable to that of Harrisco. What I like about Harrisco is that I have been able to tell them the number of pages I can handle a day. The papers are fed into a user-friendly portal and I know what to expect for my daily and weekly workload. I do work Sunday through Thursday, though, due to the time difference with Korea. I believe they understand that speed does not equal quality and they have been very respectful of my page limit requests. I run my edited papers through Grammarly and then reread. All that takes time that decreases the pay per hour. This would (and should) be the same lengthy process for any proofreading job. Know that you will not get rich as a freelance proofreader but being able to work at home during hours convenient for me is important.
For all the other companies I worked for, the work came in randomly and one constantly wanted updates through chat on their portal and sent paper after paper. Saying I was busy was not enough, I was expected to respond ASAP and give a reason why I couldn't take another paper. It didn't matter the day or that I was a freelancer. I found the expectations in terms of workload to be higher. They wanted papers run through special programs and the writer had to be rated by me and one company wanted the writers to write the cover letters for the authors' paper submissions. The mission creep was huge. Every company I have worked for expected to see revisions on every page and some (I have not experienced it with Harrisco) set limits on the numbers and types of corrections. Harrisco expects that the work is thorough and of good quality. In working for the other companies, the Editor Manager or QA team or other micromanagers (one, months after I had quit!) contacted me later regarding missing Oxford commas and other minutiae in sternly worded emails. Harrisco does not do that. The company and authors are appreciative of my work and many authors request me as a proofreader, which hopefully means I helped them get their papers published. My work for Harrisco has been followed up with questions about the low density of corrections, but I have explained that the quality of the paper supported my edits. This, however, is a rare occurrence. Most papers need extensive editing as they are written by non-native English speakers.
The consistency of work and workload are features I enjoy about working for Harrisco.
Harrisco pays US workers through PayPal. For two other companies I worked for, the work was assigned through Upwork. You do get paid, but they hold it for five days after the client has paid, then Upwork takes their own chunk. Oh, some will send you a check, but you will wait forever to get it.
Another point that seems to have changed is the acceptance and attention to days, holidays, and vacation time off I have requested. I have had no problem at all with my requests and have adjusted my workload accordingly.
All in all, I have enjoyed (especially, most recently) working for Harrisco. I find the staff very friendly and incredibly responsive and respectful. I am grateful that I get paid daily, know my general workload, and have been able to work from home safely during the COVID pandemic.