Tags: jobs | part-time | cloud | online

Forbes: Job Marketplace Is Moving to Part-Time Work In the Cloud

By    |   Tuesday, 13 August 2013 07:44 AM

U.S. companies are outsourcing labor to more freelancers who work via the cloud, a development that transcends borders and the need for full-time employees, and that could have a profound impact on the American workplace.

The goal for employers is to cut costs and gain greater labor flexibility, Forbes reported.

The trend means companies both large and small, including Fortune 500 corporations, are recruiting IT specialists, personal assistants, lawyers, accountants and other willing online freelancers using the cloud.

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The global online work industry is expected to grow from between $1 billion and $2 billion to $5 billion by 2018, Forbes said.

Online marketplace oDesk said it posted 1.5 million jobs on its platform in 2012 that were performed by 3.5 million contractors. On online marketplace Elance, the average hourly rate is $28.

When the online freelancer platforms were launched in 2005, many of them were for basic skills such as data entry and simple coding. Today some of the categories in heaviest demand are social media marketing, academic writing, research, data analysis and info graphics.

Critics note that online job marketplaces "relieve companies from the minimum wage, maximum working hours, health insurance and other commitments," Forbes reported.

The online work platform companies claim their businesses do not transfer jobs from the United States to other countries, but rather generate extra work opportunities. Gary Swart, CEO of oDesk, said American workers are ranked third by the amount of dollars earned on oDesk and that only 17 percent of oDesk's clients say they would hire locally if online freelancers were not available.

Governments in emerging nations and institutions such as the World Bank believe online work is a "catalyst for job creation for disadvantaged populations," Forbes reported.

Forbes predicted there will be fewer full-times jobs in the future, and that Americans between aged 18 and 29 will be more likely to end up with a part-time job regardless of their education.

Labor Department data show the United States has been generating an above-average 192,000 jobs monthly through July thus far in 2013. In the 30 years that ended in July, the average monthly job creation figure was 133,200.

However, the current job creation pace is still too slow to quickly reduce the nation's high level of unemployment, currently at 7.4 percent, which does not include those who have given up looking for jobs, according to MarketWatch. About 5.8 million jobs have been created in the past four years, but 7.4 million jobs were lost during the recession that began in 2008.

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U.S. companies are outsourcing labor to more freelancers who work via the cloud, a development that transcends borders and the need for full-time employees, and that could have a profound impact on the American workplace.
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2013-44-13
Tuesday, 13 August 2013 07:44 AM
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