05 June.

On-Demand Work is More in Demand than Ever

A month ago, the Kleiner Perkins report on Internet Trends of 2018 was released, and my interest was piqued by a section entitled “Work = Changing rapidly, internet helping so far”. Check out the section below, starting on slide 141:

The report focuses mainly on the growth of on-demand and freelance jobs but also points to the fact that there’s a higher demand than ever for on-demand work.

In 2015, there were 2.4 million on-demand platform workers in the USA. In just 3 years this number has more than doubled.

The report lists the many reasons people choose to be freelancers or solopreneurs. These reasons include 51% wanting a flexible schedule and 54% wanting the ability to earn monetary bonuses.

But without demand, those wishes wouldn’t be possible, so more people are realising their dreams due to a demand for professionals on-demand. And as always, the internet isn’t just enabling this kind of instant gratification, but reinforcing it.

Entering this market as a small agency or consultancy is easier than ever.

Many experienced professionals leave employment only to contract back to that same company, and some even find consulting opportunities within the network they formed during their employment.

Soon enough, they have too much work or need a complementary skill set. So they find a like-minded person or two to join them and suddenly they have a small business, A.K.A a flock of freelancers, a club of consultants, or a stable of solopreneurs.

My prediction is the agencies of the future will be more like coworking spaces where brands can hire these small agencies on demand.

Although patterns show that retainer work is diminishing, many of today’s agencies work on retainer models with their clients and the agency assembles a brand team to develop and execute the brand strategies.

But there’s big change ahead with the on-demand trend, with more marketing work involving technology configuration, the ability to self serve when it comes to digital media (through easy-to-use programmatic exchanges) and the increased use of coworking spaces like WeWork (which plans to launch 1 million square feet of new space each month in 2018).

Platforms like HubSpot allow marketers a degree of self-service, but with the breadth of functionality within these tools, everyone needs help at some point. And with the pressure on marketing teams to deliver growth, there’s often too much work for a small in-house team to execute.

So will the agency of the future be a clan of collaborative talent operating from a space like WeWork and responding to briefs through platforms like onthebench.io? It’s sounding more and more like the answer is yes.

Author: Daryn Smith