Crowd payment innovations: Expanding possibilities on future of work
What does it take to be an active collaborator and part of the new global workforce? You are working or freelancing on tasks rather than jobs, on what matters to you, seeking challenges, potentially working on an innovative solution for the next global challenge with a non-profit. You work location-independent while trying to maintain a work-life balance and your paycheck may not be a “check” after all. There could be many versions of the new “uncollared worker”, but all of them rely on effective ways to get paid and reimbursed for their work.
The on-demand service economy is making it easy to hire specialized talent and get hired, leveling the playing field, removing lengthy recruitment processes all while relying on by social trust and online reputation. Traditional definitions of work are blurring and the old systems supporting hiring, recruitment, salary, insurance and more are becoming increasingly irrelevant. Businesses are truly entering the digital economy not just by digitizing their processes but also by really turning their design upside down.
Disconnect between global workforce and outdated payments
- Working in our interconnected age gives businesses a distinctive advantage to acquire worldwide talent and operate on a global level. Yet, when it comes to paying global freelancers, suppliers and developers, being interconnected does not necessarily mean fast and effortless payment transfer with banks historically lagging behind the needs of these uncollared workers.
- They are really very few ways to pay collaborative teams that work together on tasks based on loose networks that is scaling back its true potential.
- On demand and crowd platforms that seek crowd labor will soon need to focus on providing the best value to their customer and not be a mute spectator to their freelancers paying high fees on earnings.
- What’s worse, much of the freelance community today is based in emerging markets, where paying using traditional methods is incredibly expensive - creating a “payments -paradox”, with those in need finding less take home paycheck.
The future of work is creating the need for support services that make it easy for anyone to realize the real potential of the on demand and crowd economy and innovations in financial tech are creating solid opportunities for the next billion ready to connect to the Internet. Moreover the mindset on financial pathways are changing. About 70% of us think that in the next 5 years, the way we pay for things will be totally different. Nearly half are counting on tech start-ups to overhaul the way banks work and 33% believe they won't need a bank at all.
But innovative payments companies are stepping on to the scene to meet the needs of the new workforce. And on the flipside, innovation in finance and payments are broadening the scope of work.
Payments for collaborative work: reimagining possibilities
New York-based cross-border payments company Transpay’s new platform helps businesses large or small avoid inconvenient procedures and move money globally to freelancers, suppliers and more. Nagarajan Rao, Senior Vice President of Transpay, says that this new service delivers “functionality” without costly IT integration, available to larger companies.
Transpay ensures that money reaches recipient’s bank account within minutes and is available in more than 100 countries across Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Transpay also allows for cash to be picked up at one of their agent locations in more than 60 countries. Their network’s reach into rural areas and the vast in-person payout options are crucial in emerging markets, where bank deposits are not widely used.
Disruption to watch out for:
- The multi-billion dollar freelance community, largely in emerging markets can bypass expensive banking and money transfer systems. To get an idea of impact - Elance-Odesk has eight million freelancers in 180 countries, and Freelancer.com has 14.6 million registered users, with 7.3 million projects posted.
- As rural and developing communities tap into the Internet, thanks to better infrastructure and efforts of organizations like Internet.org, lack of banks will not mean lack of opportunity.
Mobbr is another unique payment system that helps businesses to take the collaborative approach of working and organizing. Payouts for collaborative work can be complicated, but with Mobbr, organizations can pay out 'social salary' to a number of people working on a project.
Disruption to watch out for:
- The prospect of getting paid for collaborative work will throw open synergies that never before existed.
- 6 out of the 10 top global brands have platform-based business models. Now an ecosystem of external stakeholders who create value and productivity can be rewarded.
- Applications of using Mobbr payments in civic crowdsourcing projects will push the boundaries on citizen engagement and open democracy.
Whether you are a part of the uncollared workforce or a part of an organization that recruits crowd labor, take a hard look at new payment systems that are simple and provide value to all stakeholders. Also look at the other part of the equation - how do we harness these new methods to create business value. – Rappler.com
Priti Ambani is the Global Media Director at Crowdsourcing Week, an organization that is uniting thought leadership on the new people-powered economy. She is actively involved in bringing the best content on the crowd economy, social enterprises, start-ups and web 2.0 businesses to Crowdsourcing Week’s global events. Priti is a lover of the outdoors, from-scratch cooking and traveling with her husband and sons. Follow her at @envirotarian on Twitter
Priti will be bringing the best content on digital collaboration for corporations, government, social enterprises and start-ups to Crowdsourcing Week Global 2015 in Singapore, April 20-24. Rappler is a media partner.
("Internet commerce illustration" courtesy Shutterstock)