DroneBase, too early I think?


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Hi there @SCPdrone, sorry to hear about your experience. Don't take this the wrong way, but it sounds like you had some unrealistic expectations around them 110% sending you business as soon as you sign up. Unfortunately that's not where the industry is at right now — of the dozens of sites out there sending folks business, Dronebase is one of the best. So is Droners.io, where you bid on projects alongside others, similar to Thumbtack. There's more listed over here: https://www.dronepilotgroundschool.com/certified-drone-pilot-directory-list/

I signed up with Dronebase over a year ago and have only been sent a few missions. Other students of ours get sent missions almost weekly or bi-weekly. It just depends on where you're located and what contracts they have in place.

I wouldn't take your frustration out on them as a company. They're doing an incredible job in this industry and doing their best to deliver opportunities to pilots, without you having to go out there and build your own website, knock on doors, etc. There are VERY few organizations across almost every industry that have a model like this, and they seem to be making it work.

Hope this helps? Not sure this is the response you were looking for :(

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Hi all, just got a written response back from Drone Base, with their permission to publish. See below! --   1. We completely understand the concerns of the "potential" to get paid on Pano

I'll add my 2 cents worth: I've done quite a few missions so far for Drone Base. I started with some basic Pano's that didn't have a guaranteed payout for several reasons: I wanted to get a

I just want to say thank you to Alan for taking the time to talk about this topic, and I also really appreciate the response from Drone Base - very helpful. I intend to give Drone Base a shot. I

Thanks for your response Alan,

Dronebase may be a great company, I just wouldn't know it based on the experience I've had with them so far. Their systems and on-boarding process for me as a pilot have been disappointing to say the very least; after 6 weeks to find out that my profile hasn't even been approved, but with no indications through their interface until I engaged their support team is pretty unacceptable in my opinion. 

My expectations are not that they are sending me jobs daily, but Dronebase is advertising themselves as a platform for pilots being scheduled for drone work, so I'm not sure that I have an unreasonable expectation of why I'm engaging with them at all.

I also believe I should be able to at least be able to sign up and have some understanding of whether my on-boarding has become stalled or if there are any outstanding steps to be completed. 

If they don't actually want pilots, don't have jobs, or their jobs are in specific areas of the country, then maybe they should provide their pilot base with that information so we don't waste our time chasing them down, or waste time because of their technical issues.

Maybe this isn't the response you were looking for either, and while my frustration isn't directed at you, Alan, if you advertise through your mailer that they're looking for pilots, then you should be interested when your community members are having a poor experience trying to follow your advice.

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7 minutes ago, SCPdrone said:

Maybe this isn't the response you were looking for either, and while my frustration isn't directed at you, Alan, if you advertise through your mailer that they're looking for pilots, then you should be interested when your community members are having a poor experience trying to follow your advice.

I'm very interested — just tried to offer my opinion since you asked.

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On 7/18/2018 at 11:09 AM, SCPdrone said:

Maybe this isn't the response you were looking for either, and while my frustration isn't directed at you, Alan, if you advertise through your mailer that they're looking for pilots, then you should be interested when your community members are having a poor experience trying to follow your advice.

I don't have time to read this entire thread, I've kind of avoided it but its longevity kind of indicates those that believed much of the hype of these sorts of companies and those that didn't. 

It's as important to point out what's not working in this industry as it is to point out what is. 

Also, keep in mind that droners.io and Dronebase (I think) were purchased by PrecisionHawk.  This was part of a $100M series-D funding, this added to an already great story for investors.  It has little to do with the quality of their products or services.  

When these types of M/A take place, customer service is generally the first casualty, followed by a lack of truth in advertising and then really heavy spin in a market where the hyperbole is so thick you can walk on it.    

This type of employment service can certainly help individuals make some extra money.  You'll hear stories about a few industrious types who manage to make a comfortable living.  Chances are they would have without it.  

If people aren't willing to invest a great deal of time, money and effort then they shouldn't expect any of these online agencies to get them work regardless of what they claim.  

Your response might not have been what I was looking for either, but it certainly is what I expected.  

Hopefully, this experience doesn't dissuade you from making a living as a drone operator if that's what you want to do.  

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Funny I started this thread a year and a half ago. These types of companies only have pilots because amatures are trying to break into the business. Since I started this thread my drone business has more work than I can handle. Why in the world would you take a job that makes no guaranty they will pay you. 

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  • 5 months later...

So I was curious about Dronebase and a search here brings up this thread so I'll rekindle it a bit.

I noticed on their site they state back in October they stopped doing Gerry images missions.  Was anyone or does anyone know anyone that was getting a significant number of Getty images missions from Dronebase prior?  Did the end of the relationship cause a big decrease in possible jobs?

They also state on their website they pay $70 for "Insurance Jobs" I take that to be roof inspections.  It seems from the couple of really big Hurricanes in the South/Southeast over the last year or two, there was a flood of requests for drone services for roof inspections.  I'm guessing Dronebase and a few other companies possibly capitalized on this. But the demand is highly variable based on storms (not that there's no demand at all when there hasn't been a storm.)  But talking to a few pilots I got the sense that a bunch of pilots experienced the surge but it just exaggerated pilot expectations for future work of this type.  

Has Dronebase's Insurance Jobs been growing quick, steady, stagnated, or been all over the map because they are mostly tied to  storm activity?  

Not having used the app, what's this about the payout score in the context of someone saying "likelihood of payout"  Dronebase isn't actually asking pilots to run a mission that you might not get paid for (other than training missions) are they?

I do know one thing Droners in general is much much more visible on the Internet than Dronebase.  We all know how few and far between Droners jobs are since they've essentially created a "race to the bottom" market over there at Droners with a high Supply to Demand ratio.  If Dronebase is much less visible than  Droners on the Internet, they probably have a fraction of the jobs, especially after the merger with Precisionhawk and Airvid and if they have quite a few pilots, then any reports in the forums from pilots that have gotten a significant number of jobs from them may just be the exception to reality with Dronebase in my educated guess.  The only exception would be if they've done "offline networking" to forge a lot of relationships with big national companies (like Getty - now a defunct relationship, and a few insurance companies probably.) The problem with that is as time goes by, the large Fortune 1000 national companies are going to be the companies most likely to take their drone operations in house eventually, if they already haven't.

Also the fact that Dronebase wasn't bought out by Precisionhawk is most likely a bad sign.  I doubt they turned away a sales offer thinking they could come out on top and beat the combination of Precisionhawk/Droners/Airvid.  So I would assume they never got an offer because their job volume was too low and/or inconsistent.

Anyone have any insight on the current status of Dronebase?

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