I recently visited a friend whose day job is working for a private company in an office and then retreats to her house where she takes on online work. She has converted one of the rooms in her house into a fully functional office complete with fast internet speeds and a coffee dispenser. Here she works as an online freelancer and gets to make some extra money to supplement her income. She calls it “the back office”.
With her access to largely dependable internet services, my friend has fired up her interactions with those beyond her borders and transcended physical boundaries. The existence of innumerable virtual platforms through which she can work has also driven this reality for her enabling her to keep two jobs. Her online job allows her to work on her own terms providing services to anyone across the globe right from her back office. This nascent possibility of earning a living through online work struck a chord with me and I felt compelled to call us into action.
Given a chance, most of us would choose to work from the confines of our homes an online work presents this option to us. It will save us from the misery that comes with sitting in traffic in order to get to our workstations where we would then labour for seven to eight hours and then head back home waiting for the circle to repeat itself. As it is, the early adopters have already set up office spaces in their homes and are busy working various online jobs. If we take it up and make it our reality, we won’t be left behind. The future is online.
Similarly, the grounds and principles upon which businesses traditionally ran are slowly shifting. We are now witnessing more and more business entities outsourcing their services to virtual workers in a bid to cut running costs. I foresee a situation where office spaces as we have long known them may end up being converted into warehouses for the storage of goods. Targets will be reviewed and evaluations conducted virtually.
At the same time, the systems that placed great emphasis on the physical presence of an employee are being replaced with a performance-based approach. In this regard, performance will no longer be tied to whether or not an employee logs in the correct work hours as long as they deliver.
This goes to show that work is moving to the online space. Where will it find you? Does your CV have any reference to your ability to work online? Does the personal information that we have posted on our professional networking sites such as LinkedIn reflect these changing realities for us or are we still standing by?
It is time for us to build our online personal brands and learn how to bid for online jobs and connect with clients. Be a part of the movement because the future is online.