Elance Blog

Elance Job Report Shows Upswing In “Creative Economy”

We have great news for “right brain” thinkers everywhere. While job demand rose to record levels in many areas – including most technical fields – our Q2 Global Online Employment Report also points to a dramatic rise in demand for creative skills. For the first time ever the “Creative Economy” is outpacing demand for technical talent. These findings show that companies are now looking for new way to attract and engage customers.

The chart below shows the percentage of jobs posted by category, indicating Creative took the lead in Q2:



Here are some report highlights:

  • While creative skills grabbed the headlines, overall Q2 results showed new records in many online job skills. Hiring was up 35% over the same quarter last year, and contractors earned $47 million in Q2.

  • The “Creative Economy” is particularly vibrant, as more than 80,000 jobs posted in Q2 were in the Creative category. That’s up over 62% from a year ago.

  • The European economy is improving. Earnings from contractors in Egypt, Greece and Spain experienced sizeable growth in online work, increasing 147%, 122%, and 142% respectively, over the past year.

  • In the U.S., Rural America is moving online as smaller towns see big growth in online jobs. Cities like Littleton, New Hampshire (+702%), Southfield, Michigan (+316%) and Littleton, Colorado (+288%) are shining examples. Overall in the U.S. 41 out of 50 states saw their earnings grow.

Read the Q2 Global Online Employment Report press release to learn about growth in Latin America, continued strength in technical hiring, shifts in traditional jobs online and other trends in online hiring.

 

Comments

Nice

Interesting info. Would love to see the report for freelance writers as it relates to working for Elance clients specifically.

This trend has been predicted a long time ago. In this information economy anyone can code, program, etc. But not anybody can create nice graphics. This is indeed the age of creativity. Designers ideally will finally get the credit they deserve, like how programmers use to get. Good article...

Seriously? "Anyone can code, program, etc."? This has to be the most naive and idiotic statement I've ever heard regarding the IT field in general. "Designers will finally get the credit they deserve, like how programmers USED TO GET"??? God. Yeah, you're right- the world would come to an end without your glorified sketches. Ever work with transaction-intensive systems, concurrency, multi-threading, etc.? Anybody can do it. Stick to making pretty pictures with that mentality pal.

As a designer trying to master the very basics of HTML5 and CSS3, I completely concur with you ditirro, it is not something easy--AT ALL. However I DO think that good visual design is something that has been pushed to the back at the expense of bells, whistles and clever technological advances and quite frankly I hope that changes. I see designers needing developers and vice-versa. Designers need to design within the limitations of technical possibilities, and developers need to continue to push the limits of what is possible so that designers can get their full designs out there. Somewhere in the middle is where we meet and this place will continue to shift as technology changes at a dizzying pace.

I do find it annoying when I answer an advertisement for a graphic designer and the first thing they ask me is if I code. I seriously doubt that when developers answer job postings that the first question is do you know how to kern and work with text and images? Do you see what I mean? I think technology and a tight economy has allowed employers to combine design/development under one overarching job title, and in some cases it works and in some cases it doesn't. Designers and developers must share a mutual, healthy admiration and respect for each other and the work that each does. Both are difficult in their own right and equally important for the result.

Well put!

@ pxmose, that is.

I completely agree with you also pxmose- design and development are two very distinct, but very intertwined artforms. Trust me- I completely understand and have respect for the challenges and problems that frontend designers face. And yes- the two need to be able to work side by side in acomplishing a common goal. I was just a bit offended by the OP's comment about how "these days anybody can code"- that's just plain ignorant.

You have 0 programming experience, not even familiar with what it is?
Creativity? Can you please define the term?

Sorry for my aggressive comment!

My comment is for ujamaasolutions

this coming from a user that has absolutely no job history on Elance ?

not surprising, or unless you think using WYSIWIG editors such as NVU is "coding"

coding in itself is a form of art

>>> The European economy is improving. Earnings from contractors in Egypt, Greece and Spain experienced sizeable growth in online work, increasing 147%, 122%, and 142% respectively, over the past year. <<<

Did you know Egypt is NOT in Europe?

If I am not wrong Egypt is in North Africa and some part in mid east.....

Great, Go Multimedia and Design :)

In the post you write,"In the U.S., Rural America is moving online as smaller towns see big growth in online jobs. Cities like Littleton, New Hampshire (+702%), Southfield, Michigan (+316%) and Littleton, Colorado (+288%) are shining examples." While Littleton, New Hampshire does appear to be a smaller town and even out near a National Forest, the other two towns are suburbs of major cities - Detroit and Denver, respectively. How is it that they qualify as smaller towns? LIttleton, CO is also less than 10 miles from the Denver Tech Center - a haven for high tech jobs. It's a little hard for me to believe the rest of the report when I see things like this and what another commented on earlier - Egypt not being in Europe.

There's always going to be spin and this report surely comes from the folks in marketing. You have a point that online jobs are not going to be everyone's savior. But -- you mentioned Egypt -- there is no doubt that doors have opened up for all kinds of digitally skilled people everywhere. Yes that means more competition, and not everyone is equipped. This report is not trying to sell you on anything other than the viability of freelance work, with which I could not agree more.

Karl Marx didn't take Elance into consideration.

I'm loving the creative opportunities, since that's my specialty. I think we're actually seeing 'creative' jobs surge because there is a little Renaissance going on right now. Harry Potter, Twilight, and The Hunger Games have all reawakened literature with the young adult crowd. The market is starting to notice. Unfortunately, that also means that many marketers think that all they have to do is commission the 5000th paranormal romance rip-off. But for the sane majority, there is a dawning realization that the book might not be dead just yet.

Great insight for overall contractors!

GREAT!

Thank for this great information. Perfect timing for my presentation at the end of the month.

Hi Charlie- we're glad to be of service! What type of presentation did you use this information for?

My guess would be that people in these economically knackered countries are looking for work on-line as there is little available in their own countries.

bingo, and not just in the knackered economies, this also includes people with disabilities or any other barriers to employment.

Well Graphics and creativity is very important but still I believe programming and functionality decide the project success,Anyway a good report.

A very good report but i think creativity is important unless it is combined with development or coding.......the most important work of any contractor is making the outcome easy to use and look good to the eyes...so creativity is important in both designing and developing....

With great features of CSS3 and HTML, people are creating amazing graphics without using images. Even the icons are being created with CSS3 (I happen to be one of those PROGRAMMERS who do so). Thus, I see the world moving towards a situation where there will be no traditional graphic designers. All work will shift to programmers. The 'Designers' will have to be programmers as everything will be done programmatically. This scenario is already quite in and advanced programmers no longer need a designer to create graphics.

If this is true, why haven't i had any response from the over 100 applications I've sent through this site...I'm an architectural Technologist whom graduated from a Malaysian University named Limkokwing University Of Creative Technology, I've done a few projects and have a fairly good and up to date CV, although with all the applications I post daily to most job vacancies within my capability, why have I not even had one positive response...Just an enquiry...

patience young grasshopper. I am a Malaysian as well, I received my first job after approximately 159 applications, after looking back at my earlier proposals, I sometimes do laugh at those early proposals. It takes a huge amount of patience, dedication and ensuring customer satisfaction is at 101%.

Almost approaching the 200 job mark here on Elance, and I know there is still a very long road ahead. Do not give up, persist, remember that the first step is always the hardest. : )

>>The “Creative Economy” is particularly vibrant, as more than 80,000 jobs posted in Q2 were in the Creative category. That’s up over 62% from a year ago.<<

Now if we can just get those jobs posted to actually be awarded, this stat would be much more impressive.

"The European economy is improving. Earnings from contractors in Egypt, Greece and Spain experienced sizeable growth in online work, increasing 147%, 122%, and 142% respectively, over the past year."

This above assumption is probably the result of missing information. Being European myself, the picture is more like this: Europe struggles with keeping their currency, the Euro, intact. Greece as a partner of the European Union has officially filed bankruptcy. Spain is close to do the same. The economy is downtrending. Germany is the only country that is still fighting hard to stay on top of this and is without the doubt the strongest country in the European Union.

The report is correct in saying that more people are looking to work online to make a living. This happened in the U.S. when the economy dropped and we had the housing crisis (I lived there at the time) and it is now happening in Europe.

Doddi Gerhardt
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