In the past 5 years or so we’ve seen the creation of a $1Bn new market, one that’s been given numerous names. From crowdsourcing, to online outsourcing, online marketplacs and workspaces. Fundamentally its about the democratization of labour, Its about the empowerment of people to provide their skill in bite-sized quantities, on demand, across time zones, geographic barriers and to multiple vendors.continue reading »
I wrote this piece recently in a column i contribute to for the Huffington Post link
In the past year we’ve seen the amount of time UK freelancers are selling their services to companies abroad (and in particular to far Eastern countries) more than double on PeoplePerHour. You’d think that these are specialist services from the upper echelons of our labour force. But they are not. They are skills that the average middle class Brit has, thanks largely to our education system. Skills like writing good English copy, organizational task, helping a small business to basic math or data management, voiceovers, and some more specialised skills like design and technical development work
These services ‘exported’ to the fledgling SMB sector in less developed countries is a reflection of a basic macro-economic principle: what’s in abundance in some countries is scarce in others. The Western economies like the UK may have some of the most sophisticated medical systems, militaries and – once although dwindling – manufacturing infrastructures. What is often overlooked, is that we also have is a middle class that’s more educated than most economies across the world. The middle class is what emerging economies are in need of the most in order to trickle down their new-found wealth to small and medium sized businesses – which, lo and behold, become the backbone of a developed economy.continue reading »
Work as we know it traditionally is changing. And the big driving forces behind it are three in my opinion: 1) big data, 2) pervasive computing and 3) people’s innate desires to be liberated and in control of their own destiny
The last of course is not new, but technology and in particular the first two I mentioned are the catalysts of change that make it happen. But its important to note that technology doesn’t change our human nature; it just empowers it.
Pervasive computing is a concept that’s been around since the 90’s but its only really now with the consumerisation of smart-phones, and the massive data pool accessible in the cloud that it becomes realitycontinue reading »