What are Labor Clouds and Why Should My Business Care?
Imagine this. You have just secured a pivotal partnership that can significantly grow your business. But the catch is the extremely small window of opportunity to get the word out, and you have to launch a sales and marketing campaign in days, instead of the typical weeks and months.
And your team is already bogged down with the day to day tasks in managing your marketing activities. Just how are you going to find the bandwidth to get this offer out in the quick turnaround it requires?
Compounding the problem is the shortage of skilled workers available to meet business needs. SpendMatters reports that the ratio of unemployed workers and job opportunities has fallen by 50% since 2010, from 5 workers to 1 opportunity to just 2.5 workers to 1 opportunity. And the trend looks to continue, causing enterprises to look for new ways to procure the human capital and talent needed to maintain and increase their growth.
The answer? Labor clouds.
What is a labor cloud?
In short, a labor cloud is a way to digitally organize workers in one place. Potential freelance contractors and vendors are pre-screened based on the parameters you determine and curated by your parameters - skill set, qualifications, experience, geography, price or however is most efficient for your business - all at your fingertips. But it goes beyond a manually updated spreadsheet, to a fully optimized platform that streamlines the process of procuring the required talent to payment of the freelancer or vendor.
Taking the example above, a labor cloud would provide access to highly talented content writers, digital ad specialists, sales talent, social media experts, website gurus, and more, enabling you to find the right person at the right place and at the right time.
Why labor clouds?
There are a handful of ways the challenge of procuring talent for a specific, timely need can be handled. Staffing agencies also streamline the process of finding the right talent and ensuring they are paid on time for their work, but at a cost.
Or, you could create your own master spreadsheet, interview each individual, ascertain their credentials, manually search for the needed skill, contact them to deploy, obtain confirmation of the completed work and then trigger payment of their invoice.
Labor clouds provide businesses a significant advantage and competitive edge by streamlining the procurement process, giving managers more time to do what they do best: manage their team and grow your business.
More than just streamlining, there are additional benefits of labor clouds, including these top four:
Competition is fierce, and there is no better adage when providing customer support of the “early bird gets the worm.” The reality is, the faster you can act and deploy resources to meet a consumers need, the more satisfied the customer will be.
The world of freelance compliance laws change so frequently it can be impossible to keep up. Labor clouds empower enterprises like yours to mitigate the risk surrounding misclassification and labor laws and ensuring your freelance strategy is successful.
3) Increased data reporting
Entrepreneur Network guru, Patrick Bet David, summed up the need for reporting in this way, and we are paraphrasing: “The CEO is useless without numbers….the more reports available, the more ways to find leaks and determine the exact location of the underperforming product or team member and how to fix it.” Here's the link to that video.
This is true for managing on-demand labor as well. The remote and scattered nature of on-demand workers can make it difficult to have a visual into how they are performing, especially if they are dealing directly with customers. The labor cloud provides this data and feedback, so you know that the freelancer you have hired is performing at the level you require.
4) Access to top industry talent
We mentioned it above, but the competition for talent is significantly increasing, and many of the top industry talent is looking for additional ways to add income on their own time. As a result, more of these workers are joining the gig economy and soliciting their services to new businesses and using labor clouds as a way to find this supplemental work.
Labor Clouds Are Ushering in the Future of Work
Competing in today’s business landscape is challenging, and businesses need to evaluate the way they are managing their workforce. On-demand labor is enabling enterprises to compete in global markets and providing the agility to keep up with rapid change. The future of work is being redefined by an on-demand workforce enabling businesses to sell, service, and innovate in a modern world.
The question is, what will your future look like?
Take a deeper dive into labor clouds in this free whitepaper, Labor Clouds 101: Everything You Need to Know.