Gig Economy Platforms for Legacy Companies

Gig Economy Platforms for Legacy Companies

PricewaterhouseCoopers recently launched an online marketplace where freelancers can apply to work for the accounting firm on a project basis, Claire Zillman reports at Fortune:

If PwC deems them qualified for a specific project, the freelancers will be invited to bid on the job by submitting their per-hour rate. Then it will be up to PwC to decide what workers get the gig. Miles Everson, leader of PwC US Advisory, said the platform will allow the firm to tap into the growing segment of the workforce that’s independent. “We’ve seen a big increase in the freelance workforce,” he told Fortune on Monday. Part of that trend is driven by demographics—mainly people retiring. But there are other people who are voluntarily “choosing to move around,” Everson said. “They’re building micro-entrepreneur careers by moving from one set of projects and experiences to another.” …

PwC’s new platform called “Talent Exchange” is only available in the United States and is primarily geared toward the firm’s consulting business. It launched February 8 and as of Friday had garnered 4,650 registrants. Everson said PwC is still determining what percentage of applicants actually come away with a job, but he projected that freelancers will eventually make up 10% of the firm’s consulting workforce in the U.S., which now stands at 13,000.

As HRE’s Andrew McIlvaine notes, PwC’s Talent Exchange is an in-house example of a service many vendors, including Upwork and LinkedIn, have begun offering to connect freelance talent with potential clients, including large organizations:

Upwork’s new offerings consist of two services aimed at large and mid-size companies, UpWork Pro and UpWork Enterprise. … Upwork Pro is designed to provide clients with a “pre-screened” pool of freelance talent, while Upwork Enterprise is intended to let large companies “build their own private talent pools at scale” while helping them stay in compliance with independent-contractor classification laws, says Kasriel.

The space is becoming increasingly crowded with other vendors offering freelance-related services, including Hired.com, a fast-growing San Francisco-based firm that bills itself as “the jobs marketplace for knowledge workers.” Hired.com, which operates an “auction model” for workers who specialize in technology, marketing and sales and are looking for full-time positions, now offers a similar service for those looking for freelance work. … LinkedIn is currently pilot-testing its new ProFinder service, which is designed to connect freelancers with expertise in fields such as accounting, marketing and writing with potential customers.