sign in register

FAQ

How do I post a job?
How do I find a job?
How do I find a service provider?
How do I apply for a job?
How do I know when someone has applied to my job?
How do I apply for free job notifications?
Why can't I see people and jobs on the map?
What is in my profile?
What is a public vs. private profile?
What are ratings?
How can I change my rating?
Why should I keep using the site once I have established a relationship?
What about safety?
Why should I log in?
What labor laws apply to hiring minors?
How do I remove a job?
How do I edit a job?
How do I manage my jobs?
What taxes do I owe?
How do I donate?

How do I post a job?

To post a job, click on the ‘Post a job’ tab (in the blue navigation bar).

  • You may choose multiple categories in the ‘Type of Work’. Your job will appear under each of them.
  • As you fill the form, you will notice that when you click on certain choices, new options appear.
  • The post date is when the job appears on our site. The start date is when you want the work to start – after the job has been posted.
  • Instead of posting the job immediately (the default), you could set a different post date.
  • You can require a minimum age.
  • If pay depends on experience, you will be asked to enter a pay range.
  • Please indicate if the job offers community service hours. Please make sure local high schools have approved you as a provider of Community Service hours before checking the box.
  • “Who you are”: we give these options because users can post jobs for a company, or for parents who live in another town. NOTE: The person posting the job will receive all the emails from applicants, not the buyer.
  • Click ‘Submit Job’. Make sure you log in or Register IMMEDIATELY after submitting the job (if you are not logged in already). If we don't have a user to associate with the job, your job will not be posted.

How do I find a job?

To find a job, go to "Find a Job". http://www.helparoundtown.com/jobs You can look at all the job posted and sort them by date, by distance from you (you mut be logged in so we know where you are) or by pay. To search for certain job categories only, select the categories you are interested in and click 'search'. Anyone can surf the site without logging in. They can see jobs posted. The jobs are visible on a map and as a list. Jobs will indicate the buyer’s first name and initial of last name. They will not show the buyer’s address, full name, or contact information. To see this information, you need to log in. The jobs map shows a job’s neighborhood, but not its specific address.

How do I find a service provider?

There are two ways to find service providers: * Search the Bulletin board * Post a job (free) and service providers will apply. When they apply, you can see their profiles.

As a security measure, nobody can flip through our user profiles. To see a profile, you need: * a user to have provided you with a direct link to his/her profile or * to be messaging with someone through the site or * a Bulletin Board ad may include a link to a user's profile.

Otherwise, profiles are kept confidential. You can see buyers' profiles only from the jobs a buyer has posted.

How do I apply for a job?

The first time you apply for a job, you register and are given a profile page. You can then contact the buyer and apply for the job. You can see the buyer’s name and address. If the buyer has posted jobs before, you can also see what rating he/she received from previous service providers. The buyer will see your profile. It is up to you to make your profile compelling and relevant to the type of work you seek. If you have done previous jobs before and have received feedback, the buyer will see the ratings and recommendations on your profile, too.

It is up to you to make sure this person is someone you want to work for. We make no representation as to users of the service.

Why register?

You can see jobs listed and sometimes, the buyer will have made his/her contact information public. If you just email or call the buyer, without registering or logging in, then you lose out. You can only earn ratings and recommendations by applying through HelpAroundTown and being hired for a job. Then, you can initiate ratings when the work is done. These ratings are here to help you earn your next job and the one after. They are a tool for you to demonstrate your reliability, punctuality, and sense of responsibility. It is fundamental to building a professional reputation, whatever your field. When you apply through HelpAroundTown and return to our site to answer messages, all the back and forth messages are stored in your account and in the recipient's account. This has many advantages. - There is a record of your agreement on terms. - There is a record of when you will be there. - Ratings provide an important leverage to both parties. Why would you throw away this leverage? - Even though you may not be hired for this job, the buyer will have a record of your interest, access to your profile, and the ability to contact you for another job in the future, all in one easy to find place.

How do I know when someone has applied to my job?

Buyers are notified by email every time someone applies to their job. They log in to the site and can then view the applicant’s full profile, including name and address. This information is necessary for the buyer to do his/her due diligence on the service provider. The buyer and service provider message each other through the site, until they have agreed on what, where, when and for how much. At that point, they click AGREED and a green check mark appears next to a job.

  • Note: the green check mark indicates someone has been hired for a job, not that the job has been done. The job can still be appear because the buyer may need multiple workers on the job, or to hire a replacement.

Jobs are taken down in 2 ways: * Either they expire (when you post or edit a job, you are asked for the date on which to remove the job) or * Buyers actively remove their jobs once they have hired someone or once the work has been done. (Log In, go to Job Posts, you will see your job's Takedown date. To Remove a job immediately, go to Manage /click Options/ Remove.)

How do I apply for free job notifications?

  • Log in or Register
  • Go to your Profile page
  • Click Edit my Profile
  • You will see options to show what type of work you are interested in and how far from your house you are willing to travel. Check the checkbox to receive free email notifications of new jobs that fit those criteria
  • Make sure our emails are not going to your spam folders.
  • You will receive at MOST two emails a day (before 6AM & 6PM) and ONLY if a new job posts that fits your categories and distance requirements. You will only receive one notification per new job.
  • This service is Free!

Why can't I see people and jobs on the map?

We deliberately block users from seeing people's names, profiles or job content on the map to protect users' privacy. If you know where your friends and neighbors live, you will be able to find them on your neighborhood map. But we will not reveal their names, given that maps are viewable to a house-level of precision. If you think we should handle this differently (or if you approve), Contact us and tell us what you recommend.

What is in my profile?

  • On HelpAroundTown, every user has a free profile, just by registering.
  • Profiles are free.
  • The same user can be both a buyer and a provider of services
  • Profiles show the types of work you are interested in doing, your experience, training and recommendations.
  • Profiles show the types of services you are interested in buying.
  • Profile also shows your reviews, which are your ratings and recommendations earned through work done or bought on HelpAroundTown. Ratings are the strongest source of credibility.
  • You can use your profile as a free and simple web page. Set it up in a few minutes, and change it as often as you want.
  • You control your profile. Share it by: Giving out your profile's web page address (e.g. in an email or printed on a business card) Linking to your profile (e.g. from your Facebook page or in a Bulletin Board ad)
  • When posting an ad on the Bulletin Board, you can now simply check a box to have the ad link to your profile. This is great if you have received good recommendations for work done or to show off your training and experience.

What is a public vs. private profile?

  • There are two versions of every profile: Public and Private. By default, only the public profile is displayed. Private profiles are only shown on an as-needed basis.
  • Public profiles show your first name and only the initial of your last name, plus your town and state. They do not show your full last name or your street address. This is the default profile.
  • Private profiles contain your full name and street address. We show these strictly on a need-to-know basis. That is, when you post a job and when you apply to a job. People hiring you and people working for you need to know who you are before they decide to go ahead. They need to do their own background check. Your full name and address are only shown in these two cases and only if your are over 18 years old.
  • If you are under 18, your private profile includes your age and last name, but not your street address. It will include your town & state.
  • We do not display email addresses in any profiles. We encourage you to message through HelpAroundTown, so there is a record of all your agreements.
  • We do not capture phone information. We encourage you to share this selectively, in messages to people you have screened.
  • Profiles include editable text that you control. We are built to protect users privacy, but you are in control of the information that you share.

What are ratings?

Once a job is done, both parties rate each other. Feedback consists of a five-star rating and a text comment.

The five-star rating averages out the ratings on the subcategories below:

  • The buyer rates the service provider on Punctuality, Reliability, Initiative, and Ease of Dealing with.
  • The service provider rates the buyer on Clarity of Instructions, Reasonable Expectations, Ease of Dealing with.

Five-star ratings are NOT changeable – by anyone; not even the site administrator. Once they’re given, they are set. Text comments, on the other hand, are free text that the recipient chooses to post publicly. Text comments have to be approved by the recipient before they are posted. Recipients may query the comment and refuse to post it. Comments can go back & forth several times. Users are in control of the comments they post. * Make sure that once a job through Help Around Town is complete, you encourage the buyer or service provider to rate you. Either party can initiate by rating the other. When they receive your rating, they will have the option to rate you back.

How can I change my rating?

You cannot change a five-star rating. As you do more jobs, you will receive more ratings, and they will average out. If you have received a bad rating, you can still be hired by people who know and trust you. Make sure they rate you after the job and you will bring your average back up (if that rating was high).

Note that you also rate the other party. If the other party consistently gives or receives negative ratings, that will end up meaning something.

Once a text comment has been accepted and published by the recipient, you can no longer change it.

Why should I keep using the site once I have established a relationship?

When you agree to a job through Help Around Town, there is a record that the service provider will be at the buyer’s address at a specific date and time. Both parties know that. It is in both parties’ interest to have a Third Party register their whereabouts.

The other reason to register every agreement through Help Around Town is that after the scheduled work date, both parties are asked to evaluate each other. If the job is not logged, then there can be no feedback, and both parties lose an opportunity to strengthen their ratings and establish their dependability.

What about safety?

Safety is a concern and we take it seriously. Please see our Safety Page detailing the steps we have taken to encourage safety when dealing with strangers. You still always need to do your due diligence.

Why Should I log in?

When you log in, you can see:

  • details of jobs available, such as contact info
  • messages you have sent and received
  • jobs you have posted
  • your profile, which you can then edit
  • your work history

What labor laws apply to hiring minors?

Both MA Labor Laws and federal laws apply to hiring anyone. Very specific Youth Labor Laws have been developed to protect minors. When federal and state laws overlap, the law that is most protective of youth applies. These laws have been developed with regular employment in mind, whether full-time or part-time. We recommend you familiarize yourself with the text, spirit and intent of the law.

How do I remove a job?

To remove a job:

Log in to www.helparoundtown.com

Go to Job Posts.
The jobs you have posted so far will be listed, with their posting date and their take down date.
Under "Manage" on that job's line, click "remove".
You will be asked to confirm that you want the job removed (click OK).
The job will be removed.
If you go to "search a job", the job will no longer appear on that page.

How do I edit a job?

You have to be logged in to edit your jobs.
Access the job by clicking on it on the Home page, on the Find a Job page, or on the Job Posts page.
Clicking on the job title anywhere it appears will take you to the job description page.
If you are logged in, you will have an "edit your job" button on that job description page.
Click the green 'edit your job' button, and you can change the content, the work start and end date, and the job's posting date and take down date.
Make sure to save your changes by clicking 'Update Job' at the bottom of the job edits page.

How do I manage my jobs?

Log in to HelpAroundTown.com so you can see your Job Posts. (Click 'Job Posts' under Welcome back, Your Name.)

All the jobs you have posted will appear. You will see their posting date, their scheduled Removal Date, whether the job is currently posted or not, all the people who have sent you messages regarding this job, whether they applied for the job, whether you hired them, and if so, wether you rated each other.

Under 'Manage', you have several options: * edit the job (including changing the dates) * extend the job: automatically adds 30 days from today to the job removal date * remove: we will ask you to confirm that you indeed want the job removed from the list of jobs available. The job will remain in your 'Job Posts' page. The 'Posted' Column will have an X instead of a checkmark to indicate that the job has been removed.

What taxes and benefits do I owe?

There are tax and benefit implications to being paid for your work and to hiring someone to do work for you. We encourage all our users to consult with their lawyers and accountants to know what their tax and benefits liabilities are and to apply the law. Here is one possible link to get you started. Many other websites and resources are relevant. Link to the Massachusetts Department of Revenue's Household Employment Tax Guide

How do I donate?

We have had the wonderful surprise of being offered donations by members of the communities where we operate. We appreciate the endorsement this represents as well as the donation itself.

TO SEND A CONTRIBUTION TO SUPPORT HELP AROUND TOWN, please send a check addressed to:

Help Around Town, Inc. P.O. Box 546 Lexington, MA 02420

Thank you!!