It’s clear that the growth of online work hasn’t slowed down, and we’ve got more proof—Elance has crossed the incredible milestone of $500 million in work done on our platform, breaking our previous record (hitting $400 million in July 2011) of time spent to reach the next $100 million mark.
As we surpass this amazing milestone, we’d like to stop to reflect on the Elancers who helped us reach this momentous occasion. Online employment platforms are now widely-accepted ways to work and hire. Contractors are increasingly taking charge of their careers by determining their own schedules and hand-picking the clients they want to work for. Entrepreneurs, small businesses and larger organizations are turning to online talent to staff up their teams as they see fit, and tap into a truly global workforce where they can leverage workers both immediately and securely. Enterprise businesses are continuing to use a hybrid work model that allows them a mix of on-site and online workers. Taking all of this into account, we continue to see clear indications that working online can be more efficient, effective and produce more timely results than traditional employment.
$500 million is truly an incredible feat, but we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the hundreds of thousands of skilled contractors and clients who have embraced the online work model and helped build our platform into what it is today. We offer you our thanks, and would like for all of you to take a minute to congratulate yourselves on this collective achievement.
Today, contractors and clients together have surpassed the $400 million mark on Elance, representing new altitudes of earnings by skilled professionals and results delivered to entrepreneurs and businesses worldwide.
If it feels like we hit the $300 million mark not too long ago, then you’re absolutely right. Thanks to you, we’ve hit this century milestone faster than ever, beating our previous record (set during our $300 million marker) by nearly five whole months.
We’re excited to announce the launch of Mashery Developer Connect alongside Mashery, the leading provider of API (Application Programming Interface) management technology and services. This service will help match skilled developers with freelance API projects on Elance, allowing developers to market their in-demand technical skills and find online work on Elance, while enabling businesses to find qualified talent for their growing number of API integration projects.
Developer Connect streamlines the ability for Elance developers to find available API projects that utilize their technical skills, and developers with experience building web and enterprise backend systems to mobile platforms like iOS and Android can quickly tap into Elance’s growing list of API integration projects. In addition, businesses can search the extensive pool of tested and rated contractors to find the right talent for their next API integration project.
“By partnering with Mashery, we offer businesses access to developers who can leverage APIs and build all kinds of apps,” said York Poon, Vice President of Product at Elance. “At the same time, we are increasing the number of API integration jobs available on the Elance platform.”
“It is clear that a structural change in traditional employment is underway,” said Fabio Rosati, Elance CEO. “Work is no longer confined to the 9-5 and the office: people are working online with multiple clients as a career choice and companies are hiring online teams as a core business strategy. This investment will help Elance keep up with demand and continue to innovate work.”
Additionally, Dan Marriott, managing partner at Stripes Group, and Paul Hsiao, partner at NEA, will join our Board of Directors. Marriott, whose firm led the investment, brings extensive experience building market-leading Internet businesses such as Ticketmaster, Citysearch and Match.com.
“Elance has an impressive track record of innovation and growth. The company is leading the category of online work which is fast becoming a global market opportunity,” said Ray Lane, managing partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. “We are excited to work with the Elance team to further develop and execute the company's strategy.”
In 2011, we experienced tremendous growth: the number of businesses hiring and the number of online professionals working on Elance grew more than 120 percent since 2010. Businesses posted more than 650,000 new jobs on Elance last year and contractors have earned nearly $500 million to date on the platform. Elance is a true global marketplace with more than 160 countries represented which actively use its online work platform.
Successful clients understand the need to manage their resources, budget for time and keep their paperwork in order. When you're working with a number of contractors, it's especially important that you stay organized not only during the work process, but until your projects are completed and payment has been delivered. With today's release, we've introduced user defined fields, a new feature for clients that will make it easier to manage projects throughout the invoicing and payment process and enable better spend tracking.
User Defined Fields for Clients
Whether you're a large organization with an explicit need to categorize your invoices and purchase orders, or a client who simply wants to better organize your project documents, you can take advantage of user defined fields.
As the account administrator you can create custom fields that your individual users can set for each job they're working on. For example, to better manage your invoices, create and assign Purchase Order (PO) numbers to jobs you post and award, and assigned PO numbers will then be displayed on all invoices submitted by the contractor for the duration of your job. In your Account Settings, select User Defined Fields in the left-hand navigation, and you'll see the following:
Our profile search results page has a new look with bigger profile image sizes and we've released a new profile image upload process that includes a cropping feature to create a better-looking, standardized search icon. To ensure that your contractor profile displays correctly in our search results, please update your profile image using this new process if you have not already done so.
Despite a stagnant employment market in 2011, online hiring has grown at a record pace, up more than 100% from 2010. Elance, the leading platform for online work, released its 2011 Online Employment Review today, which reveals that the future of work will be contingent, global and online. As more companies seek instant access to talent and greater flexibility to run their businesses, individuals are taking control of their future by building careers as independent professionals.
While global economies continue to struggle with job creation, online work thrived this year with 650,000 new jobs posted, and cumulative earnings set to surpass $500 million. The number of businesses hiring on Elance and the number of online professionals working on Elance grew more than 120%. Earnings for online professionals rose in more than 100 countries around the world. In the US, earnings rose in 43 out of 50 states, including some of the hardest hit regions in unemployment such as Michigan, Nevada and South Carolina. For the full 2011 Online Employment Review, click here.
2011 Reflections: Online Hiring
Businesses are developing innovative workforce models that blend full-time and part-time, local and remote, employed and contracted workers. The practice of hiring and managing talent online is spreading and 83% of small businesses surveyed by Elance plan to hire up to 50% of their workers as online contractors online in the next 12 months.
It's a great time to be a client or contractor on Elance—there are more jobs posted and more talent available than ever before. When managing multiple jobs and relationships, it can be a challenge to stay organized, so we’re adding some exciting new tools to help you navigate through your growing list of jobs.
First, we've introduced a new job tagging feature that allows you to filter and manage all of your projects by whatever keywords you choose.
For example—as a contractor, if you have a large number of open jobs, perhaps you want to filter them by urgency so that you can plan your workday accordingly. If you manage a team on Elance, you may only want to see the copyediting jobs your team members are working on, not copywriting. As a client, maybe you want to filter your jobs by each category of work or mark the jobs that require weekly video chat or screen sharing.
Though web-based technology, from communication apps to hiring platforms like Elance, has significantly reduced the cost of starting your own business, we’ve realized that the need for physical office services can still be an ongoing challenge for entrepreneurs. Because of that, we’re excited to announce a new partnership with another industry leader—Regus (www.regus.com)— to provide Elance users with both dedicated virtual office resources and access to Regus’ extensive network of business facilities around the world, ensuring that you have everything you need to build your business, at a fraction of the cost of having your own office.
What Can Regus Offer Me?
As the world’s largest provider of workplace solutions, Regus knows remote work as well as Elance does. Their products and services range from fully equipped and staffed offices to virtual office packages, professional meeting rooms, business lounges and video communications studios. Over a million businesses owners and remote workers benefit from outsourcing their office and workspace needs to Regus, allowing them to work wherever, however and whenever they want to.
Special Offers For Elance Users
To help companies and workers take advantage of this new way to work, Elance and Regus have partnered together to give Elance users a great promotion. Simply visit the Elance offers page here, and you’ll receive a FREE six (6) months of Regus businessworld Gold Membership ($300 value), which includes:
Unlimited, walk-in access to any of Regus’ 1,100 global business lounges and cafés, with complimentary Internet and refreshments.
Preferred rates on meeting rooms, day offices and video communications studios at all Regus locations.
Access to professional administrative support, from packing and shipping to document printing and binding.
With today's release, we'd like to a new feature to the site—My Apps, a new suite of robust applications to help get your work done more efficiently and effectively.
With our new My Applications feature(located in the Resources dropdown menu in our navigation bar), we have incorporated more tools on Elance to help get your projects completed, including new productivity applications that will keep you better organized, allow you to share screens for enhanced collaboration, and participate in video chat to keep you in regular communication with your team—all from your Workroom.
To Do List
Elance To Do List improves collaboration amongst Workroom users by creating tasks, assigning them to users and tracking the status. To Do List also has a separate page for each Workroom which is accessible by default to every user assigned to them.
Create new tasks & assign them to any Workroom user.
Track tasks created within a Workroom & view your complete history of events.
Automate Workroom messages & alerts for certain task-related events.
Elance Video Conferencing
Our new video conferencing application makes it easy to add flexible, multi-way video chat to your Workroom and allow live, group video conversations. By bringing human interaction into your communication, you’ll be able to share ideas more freely than ever, and finally be able to talk face-to-face with your team.
Create new video conferencing sessions using Workroom interface and easily invite Workroom users to video chat.