design for a sustainable future
Future Trends - work
If you are a frequent user of LinkedIn or Xing you will have realised that the platforms, which about ten years ago started as online communities for professionals have now - to a large extent - changed into advertising platforms for professionals and their skills. A freelance software developer recently told me that she finds 80 per cent of her project work via LinkedIn. Sometimes she relies on established networks, which are also mirrored on LinkedIn, sometimes she establishes new contacts to find a new project to work on.
She - like many talented people - started to work for a big consulting firm after graduating from university. She very much enjoyed the work, but at some point got tired of the constraints of a corporate environment and the daily routines of large scale IT projects. So she decided to leave and set up on her own looking for smaller teams and cooler projects. And that is what she found.
Instead of going to a corporate office every day she now works from home or a coffee shop in her neighbourhood. She still works hard, but her hours are much more flexible. There are a number of co-working spaces around town where she can meet with her project team, if the team is local. If that is not the case, tools like Skype, GitHub and WhatsApp support the daily interactions.
In many cases the teams are not local and teams stretch around the globe. Projects can be global, but in many cases people decide work in locations where they like to live. Why spend the winters in grey London, if you can live and work in Madrid or Thailand?
The only requirement is good and fast internet access. This also gives talents from less developed regions access well paid projects in the big business hubs around the world.
This trends has started with the first Internet bubble and around the edges of the traditional labour markets in the creative and software sector. It is fast becoming mainstream and big corporations as well as SMEs will have to respond to this trend to be able to find and retain talents.
New businesses such as Elance have emerged to support this new free workforce and they are growing at a fast pace. Elance provides interesting reading and statistics outlining the latest developments.