Why the energy sector should keep an eye on freelancers and independent workforce

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Why the energy sector should keep an eye on freelancers and independent workforce

 

Discussing innovations within the energy sector tends to lead to the same few topics every time: Renewable energy vs. conventional energy, technological developments and costs as well as energy storage and smart grids.

It is a fact, that there is quite a lot of innovation taking place within the energy sector by keeping an eye on these topics. Costs of renewable energies dropped significantly within the last years and the deployment of additional generation and storage capacities are rising globally. Even the automotive industry has now recognized the potential of electric power units and are shifting their focus towards these markets.

But the time in which these topics flamed enthusiastic and exciting discussions seems to have passed, as these issues have been more or less sucked dry. Especially new content on Electric Vehicles, Smart Grid or Energy storage are literally bashing our mailboxes with spam.
I think there is a lot of innovation happening within the energy sector in general, but where I miss the innovative approaches is when it comes to organizational, strategic and operational business processes.

Within our team at E-nable+, we have assessed different international trends in the job and workforce domain, and we concluded – not surprisingly – that freelancers are on the rise. Small to medium enterprises rooted within Information Technology domains are clearly more innovative in terms of Human Resource Management and -processes than enterprises within the energy landscape.
Throughout our research, we identified several different major drivers which are fueling the freelancer workforce trend. From the employer-side, which to our opinion is also highly relevant for energy sector companies, corporate downsizing and shifting economic conditions are the major drivers to jack up the numbers of freelancers. From the employee-side, rising dissatisfaction with conventional jobs and the professional environment as well as rising demand for work-life balance are drivers for the strong freelancer growth out there.
With that, we found also two multipliers, providing potential breeding ground for further growth.

1. Co-working spaces and remote working

It is not a coincidence, that almost every major city has a rising number of co-working spaces and are still in high demand.
While nowadays, remote working is common to a certain degree for “classical” office jobs, this is especially relevant when talking about freelancer work. Mostly, freelancers simply meet with their clients (and even this can happen remotely) in order to fixate contracts as well as details and clarify their scope of work. Tasks aligned with their relevant contract can then be performed at home, in another office, and/or abroad, while typically milestones are reported to their clients.
This leads to a situation, where a lot of independent freelancers feel slightly isolated. Co-working spaces provide the perfect ground for freelancers to generate a sense of community and gain the different advantages of a professional setting. A chance to network and social system, based on fancy-offices with luxury add-ons beer on tap, fresh fruits or arcade games in the community rooms.

2. Platforms matching Freelancer expertise with enterprises

Additionally to the rising number of co-working spaces, the rise of matchmaking platforms within the freelancer domain play an arguably bigger role.
According to recent surveys, business development and securing new work assignment accounts for nearly up to 50% of a freelancer’s daily activities, leading to a potential hurdle in maintaining their project pipeline and getting actual work done.
With new matchmaking platforms, Freelancers can present their profiles in a professional manner to interested clients. Enabling them to save resources and time within business development in order to perform their “real” assignments. Furthermore, these platforms can also help companies to find the perfect talent within a few minutes.

But what does this have in common with the energy sector?
As mentioned above, corporate downsizing and the economic shift will impact the energy sector probably more than others. This will ultimately lead to the demand for further freelancer resources within the energy sector.

Based on our research, we believe that there is a huge need for a freelancer platform focused specially on the needs of freelancers and companies within the energy sector, providing tailored services.

Based on this, we are happy to announce that E-nable+ will launch its brand-new freelancer module, giving these stakeholders the opportunity to finding new business partners with lowest effort of resources.

Stay tuned for our launch on the 1st of December!

Philipp Lobnig, 25. November 2016, 15:29

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