The Rise of the Virtual Workforce – An Undeniable Trend

Despite the recent news of Yahoo and Best Buy pulling their home workers back into the office, the trend of working-from-home is not going away anytime soon.  Proof can be found in the recent New York Times article announcing the Freelancers Union, currently with over 200,000 members and growing quickly.  The purpose of the Freelancers Union is to address freelancer concerns—about things like health insurance—so they can continue to enjoy the freedom of the freelance lifestyle.

The reality is that a growing number of workers prefer to work virtually and maintain the work-from-home flexibility.  In a recent synthesis of over 500 studies, the Telework Research Network published some very interesting statistics that I encourage you to read. Here are a few that support the notion that working-from-home is on the rise:

  • 79% of people want to work from home
  • 36% would choose it over a pay raise
  • A poll of 1,500 technology professionals revealed that 37% would take a pay cut of 10% if they could work from home
  • Gen-Yers are more difficult to recruit (as reported by 56% of hiring managers) and retain (as reported by 64% of hiring managers), but they are very attracted to flexible work arrangements (ranked 8 out of 10 for impact on overall job satisfaction)

Looking ahead to 2025, less than 15 years away, Gen Y will form 75% of the workforce. With advances in technology enabling workers to be productive anytime and anywhere, the notion of a 9 to 5 work day is rapidly becoming a thing of the past.  Virtual work, and ultimately crowdsourcing, is ideal for anyone who works from home, has a part-time job, is a stay-at-home parent, retiree or recent graduate, or for anyone who prefers a flexible schedule and lifestyle.  For Gen-Yers, crowd work could well become the occupation of choice.

Lionbridge’s Global Crowd consists of a private crowd of over 100,000 workers in over 100 countries.  Our workers are heavily screened to ensure their skills meet the requirements of our clients’ projects and that the work is a good fit for the worker. Our crowd is highly educated, with over 90% of the workers holding  a higher education degree. If you are interested in exploring this rising work trend and joining the elite Lionbridge Global Crowd, apply today.

lionbridge crowd

A special thanks to Lia DiFranco for her assistance with this blog.

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