The on demand sector has raised $9.4 billion since 2010, but most of this has come in the past 18 months. Funding for on-demand companies jumped 514 percent last year to $4.12 billion, and new investments in early 2015 have totaled at least $3.78 billion, according to venture capital research firm CB Insights. This is now moving beyond handy men and cleaners and into the knowledge economy.
We believe this boom marks the start of a significant new stage of change and disruption. As the smartphone is becoming the ubiquitous on demand platform, so it will deliver new labour services that challenge organisational design and our preconceptions on career structure across the knowledge economy.
The knowledge economy
… One of the most significant indicators that on-demand services are set to explode within the knowledge economy is Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. Allowing customers to post any “human intelligence task”, giving access to a 24-7 global workforce only paying when you are satisfied with the results. From transcribing audio, editing video captions to reviewing websites.
- rise of the machine – in a recent McKinsey report it was estimated that the cognitive computing industry will bringing in an estimated $6.7trn (£4.3trn) in productivity by 2025. Fundamental white collar labour change is coming, irrespective of those who would rather maintain the status quo.
… It seems clear that the on demand ‘craze’ is here to stay and is already spreading into the knowledge economy. Social and legal barriers to change are high, but economic, technology evolution and workforce motivation factors suggest we’re at the beginning of this revolution. Rest