The Way We Work

The New Era of Workforce-as-a-Service is Here

December 11, 2012 by

Last week, I attended a fireside chat event with Gary Swart, the CEO of oDesk, where I was blown away by the concept of an on-demand online workforce and how Gary predicts that by 2020, one in every three employees in the workforce will work remotely online. This topic also came up a few days ago at an event I attended at Stanford, where Mary Meeker gave her talk on 2012 Internet Trends. Mary asserted the trend towards an on-demand Workforce-as-a-Service (WaaS) using platforms like oDesk, which enable employment to be asset-light with very minimal fixed costs. I’ve now realized that the on-demand workforce is a reality and many tech giants here in the San Francisco Bay Area are embracing it. In this blog post I’m going to discuss on-demand workforces and how oDesk leverages this trend. Read Full Article

The Way We Work

The Future Workforce: Technology Fueling a Revolution in Job Creation

November 20, 2012 by

Our friends over at Singularity University recently published a fascinating article in The Washington Post about the impact of technology on the future workforce. It features an email exchange with Vivek Wadhwa, Singularity’s Vice President of Innovation and Research, and futurist Ray Kurzweil, in which they discuss whether the rapid advancement of technology will have a net positive or negative impact on employment in the future. They both make intriguing points, but one that I feel strongly about falls on Kurzweil’s side of the argument—which is that Internet technology is creating a revolution in employment, one that’s for the better. Read Full Article

The Way We Work

How a Rural Tennessee County is Fighting Unemployment With Online Work

October 30, 2012 by

In 2009, Perry County faced a bleak future. The Tennessee county had the third-highest unemployment rate in the nation at 27 percent, even lower than during the Great Depression. As factories had slowly but steadily abandoned Perry County, leaving in their wake low-wage jobs as the sole employment option, the county knew it would take an innovative solution to create meaningful employment. In response, they launched an online work initiative, and now they're helping people create careers and build skills, and turning the statistics around. Read Full Article

The Way We Work

“Less-Owning Startups” and the Next Generation of Entrepreneurs

October 16, 2012 by

What do you get when you combine a high rate of entrepreneurship with a new mentality regarding ownership? You get today’s millennial generation—and that confluence has significant implications for the economy and the future of entrepreneurship, according to oDesk CEO Gary Swart. In his recent article for Forbes, Gary discusses how millennials' high entrepreneurship rate, as well as their tendency to prefer "access to ownership" instead of ownership itself, will change the way startups are structured in the future. Read Full Article

All Things Upwork

oDesk Hosts Panel on “Talent Wars” Moderated by TechCrunch

October 15, 2012 by

Last week, oDesk held a panel in San Francisco on “Talent Wars: How Startups are Fighting Back,” discussing the critical role of talent to growing startups as well as the approaches startups are taking to build successful teams. TechCrunch reporter Colleen Taylor moderated the panel featuring Gary Swart, CEO of oDesk; Kevin Harvey, General Partner at Benchmark Capital; Rob LaFave, Co-Founder and CEO of Foodzie; and Sandra Miller, Managing Director of New Venture Development at Singularity University. The panel confirmed that many businesses are finding it extremely difficult to access the right people, and that the problem is especially acute for startups — which are in dire need of talent in order to grow, but do not have the resources to compete with large companies. Read Full Article

The Way We Work

How Results-Focused Management Empowers Remote Teams

October 2, 2012 by

Many organizations have revolutionized their culture, embraced remote work and fostered spikes in productivity by embracing a Results Only Work Environment (ROWE). Best Buy pioneered the methodology, which is now being practiced by both the private sector and public sector. In this article, Charles Brian Quinn, president of Highgroove Studios, talks about his company's experience implementing ROWE. Read Full Article

The Way We Work

Connecting Americans to Jobs: FCC & oDesk Discuss Broadband Internet Access and Job Creation

September 12, 2012 by

On Monday night, we were pleased to host a dinner discussion with FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, on the topic of broadband Internet access and its role in job creation. The topic is an important one: currently 19 million Americans are without Internet access. That represents 19 million Americans who could be working online, building their careers and bringing money into the U.S. economy. For a sense of the opportunity lost there, consider that, to date this year, businesses have spent $32 million hiring U.S. contractors online through oDesk. But that’s just the beginning—the overall online work market is expected to reach $1B by the end of this year. Read Full Article