This FAQ is aimed at clients, users who are looking to hire remote contractors and conduct sales campaigns through Overpass. If you are looking to use Overpass to find work, please see Frequently Asked Questions (Contractors) instead.
What is Overpass?
Overpass is an online marketplace and a customer engagement platform. Small and medium-sized businesses use Overpass to hire remote contractors and manage outbound sales campaigns.
How can Overpass help my business?
We started Overpass to provide a better way for small businesses to interview, hire, and pay remote contractors. Our clients use our marketplace to hire talented salespeople and appointment-setters, who then use our software to conduct customer outreach campaigns. We also act as a payment facilitator for those contracted employees.
How do I get started?
The first step is simply to create your free account at www.overpass.com. Once you’ve created an account, you can begin browsing our marketplace and create your first job post. Within a day or two of your enrollment, one of our Account Executives will reach out to learn more about your needs and guide you through the hiring process.
Where is Overpass located?
We began in Newark, NJ, and have since expanded to include offices in Brooklyn, NY and Romania.
Contracts and Contractors
What kind of remote contractors can I hire through Overpass?
The contractors available through our marketplace have a wide range of industry backgrounds, but all are guaranteed to have at least six months of previous experience in outbound phone work. You’ll find agents with expertise in direct sales, appointment-setting, lead generation, customer service, and fundraising.
Where are your contractors located?
Our marketplace includes contractors from all over the world! We currently have active agents in over 80 countries.
Do all Overpass contractors speak fluent English?
Yes. We have many agents who are native English speakers, as well as others who learned English as a second language. When you create a job post, you are welcome to specify if a particular level of language fluency is required.
Can I hire a multilingual contractor?
Yes! We absolutely have agents who are bilingual in Spanish and French. If you have a different language in mind, just let us know and we’ll help out.
Do these contractors work for me or for Overpass?
Overpass acts as a payment facilitator, but officially these agents are freelance workers hired by your company. Our team helps with billing, onboarding, and technical support, but it is ultimately your responsibility to develop a professional relationship with your contractors and ensure they have the necessary resources and product knowledge to effectively represent your company.
How will I find the right agents for my team?
Once you create a job post, Overpass contractors are presented to you in three categories: Best Matches, Handpicked, and Applicants.
Best Matches contractors are a pool of candidates that our algorithm identifies as potential matches, taking into account factors such as your budget, desired industry background, experience level, and language fluency preferences. If your “suggested” agents don’t seem quite right at first, don’t worry -- we have plenty of alternate options!
Handpicked contractors are manually chosen by our team, following a discussion of your business and your specific preferences.
Applicants are the agents who have applied directly to your job post based on their personal interest. Their background may not be exactly what you envisioned, but they are eager for a chance to prove themselves!
What type of work do contractors actually perform?
Most Overpass contractors spend the majority of their shift making outbound calls to an existing list of potential customers or leads. Our dialer software makes it easy for contractors to contact hundreds of numbers over the course of a day or week. Depending on your needs, these may be direct sales calls, or the contractor may work as an appointment-setter, scheduling follow-up calls for a different member of your team. Contractors can also use the Overpass platform to send outbound emails and receive inbound calls.
Can my contractors use a different dialer or CRM instead of Overpass?
Yes. However, while we can ensure these contractors understand the Overpass platform, you are responsible for training them to use any additional software. Furthermore, to ensure accurate payment, the agent will still need to log into Overpass.com for the duration of their shift, then work in your alternate platform using a different tab or window. (We call this "Off-System Work," meaning that the contractor is working outside of the Overpass system.)
Can I ask my contractor to do a different type of work for me, besides making calls and sending emails?
Yes, once you’ve hired a freelance contractor, they are officially your employee, so you are welcome to speak to them about different types of tasks. Bear in mind that we vet these contractors based on their phone skills specifically, so not all contractors will be comfortable with different roles.
Pricing and Billing
What does it cost to join Overpass?
It’s completely free to create an account, browse our marketplace, and even interview potential contractors. You won’t be charged a penny until one of our contractors has officially been hired by your company.
How much does it cost to hire a contractor?
There are two costs to Overpass: an annual seat fee, billed monthly, and your contractor compensation, billed weekly.
In addition to the seat fee, you are responsible for your contractors’ weekly compensation, based on their hourly rate. 100% of that compensation goes directly to the agent.
For a more extensive explanation of our pricing & options, please consult our Overpass Billing Explainer article.
What are the contractors’ average rates?
Our contractors’ rates range from $5/hour up to around $35/hour, depending on their experience level, industry background, and location.
How does Overpass help facilitate contractor payment?
We pay contractors weekly, and our billing period runs from Monday - Sunday. Every Sunday at midnight you will receive an invoice detailing the hours your contractor(s) worked during the previous billing cycle. You are notified of new invoices via email, and can also access them via our site itself. You have 48 hours to make adjustments, add any potential commission bonuses, and approve the invoice.
If the invoice if not manually approved prior to Tuesday at 11:59 PM (Eastern time), it will be auto-approved, and no further changes can be made.
Regardless of whether the invoice is manually or automatically approved, we’ll charge your card on Wednesday, and pay your contractors via PayPal on Thursday.
How does Overpass track a contractor’s paid hours?
We use a system called “Status-Based Billing,” which allows us to monitor the total amount of time that a contractor was logged into your workspace, and precisely what they were doing during that time. Contractors use a drop-down menu to identify when they are actively working versus taking a break. Our system automatically logs agents out after 15 minutes of inactivity.
Are there any other fees or costs to be aware of?
We apply a 3% processing fee to all credit card transactions.
Does Overpass take out contractor taxes or provide tax forms?
No. As the employer of a freelance contractor, you do not have any tax obligations. At tax time, we provide contractors with a summary of their yearly earnings through Overpass, which they should report as additional freelance income. As per the most recent iteration of the U.S. Tax Code, Overpass is considered a “payment settlement entity,” and is not obligated nor expected to provide 1099 forms to contractors who find freelance work through our platform.
Interviews and Hiring
How does the interview process work?
When you find a contractor you’d like to interview, click the Interview button on their profile.
The first time you click Interview on a contractor's profile, you'll be asked to propose dates and times when you'll be available to speak with them. You must select, at minimum, a two-hour window (split into four 30-minute slots.) You are welcome to add as many additional days and times as you prefer.
We'll also generate a one-time telephone number and PIN code that you'll use to contact the candidate. Whenever the agreed-upon time arrives, you'll just dial that specific number and enter the PIN to be connected directly to their cell phone. This number/PIN will be unique for each person you are interviewing.
As potential hires "claim" the individual interview slots you have proposed, you will occasionally be prompted to offer additional dates and times.
The interview was great! How do I hire this agent?
Following the interview, navigate to the contractor’s profile and look for the Send Offer button. You’ll be asked to provide specific details about this role, including the pay rate you’re offering and the weekly schedule. Those details form the structure of the contract offer, which the contractor can then accept or decline.
Once a contract offer has been accepted, you will be charged your initial seat fee -- $240 or $160, depending on which plan you choose -- prorated based on the time remaining in the month.
The interview was . . . just OK. Can I interview someone else?
Of course. You’re welcome to interview as many potential employees as you like at no cost. We want you to be completely comfortable before you decide to hire anyone. We only ask that you do follow-through on all interview requests.
Can I offer commissions?
Absolutely! Many clients incentivize good performance by offering commission bonuses for completed sales or verified appointments set. You’ll simply need to communicate with our billing team on a weekly basis to inform them of any such bonuses we should apply.
Can I offer a contract that’s 100% commission-based?
No. We’ve found that commission-only contracts are generally not successful, so we do require contracts to have an hourly rate. However, some contractors may be willing to accept a lower hourly rate if they also have the option to earn commissions.
Can I offer to pay a contractor less than their preferred rate?
We do recommend that you offer agents their preferred hourly rate whenever possible, as this forms a positive basis for your relationship. In certain cases, however, agents may be inclined to accept a lower hourly rate, especially if you also offer a commission structure or some other incentive or perk.
Do I need to offer my contractor a minimum amount of hours per week?
We recommend that contracts should be for at least 15-20 hours per week to see success. Fewer hours makes it difficult for the contractors to get comfortable and familiar with the script.
Can I change the terms of a contract as time goes on?
Certainly, although bear in mind that changes may affect your contractor’s ability (or willingness) to continue with the contract. Generally speaking, most agents are flexible in terms of minor changes to their daily or weekly schedule. Many clients find that as time goes on, they want to give their Overpass contractors more hours per week, which is almost always welcomed!
After a contractor accepts my offer, how soon will they start calling?
Contractors are eager to start working as soon as possible, so it typically only takes a few days to get up to speed. We always recommend holding a “kick off call,” during which you can teach your new employee about your product or service, and go over the goals and expectations for the campaign. Your Account Executive will help schedule this as well, so they can be in the loop. Depending on your preferences, you may wish to schedule more than one training session.
Do I have to train these contractors?
Yes. Overpass contractors have experience with phone sales in general, but not with the particulars of your product or service. You should schedule at least one training session with them prior to the campaign beginning, during which time you can educate them about your business, including your sales goals and potential objections they may encounter. Additionally, we have a Training section within your workspace, where you can provide supplementary instructions or information.
How do I cancel a contract?
If your campaign has ended, or if your contractor isn’t working out, you may end that contract by navigating to the Workforce page and selecting the Contract button on the right side. Just like any professional relationship, we ask that you give your contractors the courtesy of informing them of this decision ahead of time, and providing feedback when possible.
How can I best set my contractor up for success?
Great question! We’ve found that open and frequent communication is a huge element of successful remote employment. Regularly checking in with your agents to offer feedback, provide additional training, or allow them to ask questions is the best way to build trust and long-term success.
What do you mean by a “campaign,” exactly?
A campaign is an organized outreach effort to a specific group of potential customers. Depending on your business, you may only need one campaign for all of your needs, or it may make sense to separate your customers by various categories. For example, some clients create multiple campaigns to target different geographic regions, or to sell different services.
Is there any cost or drawback to running multiple campaigns?
Not at all. Campaigns are free; create as many as makes sense for you. Learn more about the benefits of doing so here: Utilizing Multiple Campaigns.
Do I need a different agent for each campaign?
No. How you organize your workforce is completely up to you. It’s perfectly fine to have one agent who alternates between multiple campaigns, or you could assign more than one agent to the same campaign, in order to work through the list faster. Or you might hire three different agents and assign each to a different campaign, to better compare their results. It’s all up to you!
How can I track my contractor’s progress?
Accountability is crucial to remote work, so we give you lots of tools to monitor your team’s efforts. Through our Campaign Monitor section, you can see exactly how many calls they’ve made over specific time periods, and the specific outcome of each call. You can even listen to the exact audio recordings of those conversations. We also show you what percentage of their time has been spent actively on the phone (as opposed to preparing or wrapping-up after a call.)
Does Overpass integrate with other software platforms?
Yes. At the moment, we have two integration options: Facebook, and Unbounce (a landing page service.) In both cases, you are able to pull newly-acquired leads (for instance, Facebook users who provide you their contact information) into an existing Overpass campaign, so that your contractor can call them in a timely manner.
What about integration with Calendly? Or with Zapier? Or with . . .
There’s a lot of interest in additional integration options, and we will absolutely be expanding our capabilities in this area as time goes on! Feel free to let us know what integrations would be most useful for you so we can prioritize accordingly!
What number do outbound calls come from? Can I choose a Caller-ID number?
You have a few choices when it comes to phone number management. Some clients prefer to use their own number (typically an office landline, or their cell phone) as the Caller ID. In this configuration, any return calls will ring directly to you, not to the contractor.
Alternately, if you want your contractors to be able to receive calls directly, we can provide you with a complimentary virtual DID (Direct Inward Dialing) number, with any area code that you prefer. In this configuration, return calls will ring to the agent, who can transfer to you if necessary.
Do I need any extra equipment or a certain type of computer to use Overpass?
No, any reasonably modern PC or Mac computer is fine. We recommend using the Google Chrome browser for best results.
How can we get direct help if my contractors or I have trouble using Overpass?
We have a great Customer Success team that’s always happy to help troubleshoot technical issues, or offer advice on best practices. During office hours (Monday - Friday, 9:00 - 5:00 Eastern time) you can reach us instantly by simply clicking the blue “chat” icon in the lower corner of Overpass. We’re also reachable by phone at (718) 360-9450 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. If something crops up after office hours, we have a friendly “chat-bot” who can help resolve the most common problems, or leave us a message and we’ll respond first thing the next day.
More questions about what it's like to hire through Overpass? Let's talk! Email us at email@example.com, or contact our team by clicking the blue "chat bubble" in the lower corner of the site.