Elance and oDesk Freelance Job Platforms Announce Merger
Elance and oDesk, both online marketplaces connecting freelancers and jobs, have announced plans to merge. The combined number of freelancers using the two hiring platforms is over 8 million. The company will continue to operate the two websites at elance.com and odesk.com, and maintain separate headquarters, both located in Silicon Valley.
The main benefits of the merger are anticipated to come in combining technological expertise in the areas of job matching, collaboration, and mobile technology. Identifying appropriate matches is critical to customer satisfaction for both freelance job seekers and hiring businesses. Once an engagement is agreed upon, collaboration technology is used to manage communication, track and verify progress, deliver end products, and resolve disputes.
With the staffing market generating over $400 billion dollars annually worldwide, there is plenty of room for growth, as the revenue to date for the two companies is $2 billion. U.S. job-seekers, however, quickly discover that in the online freelancing world they are competing with workers from over 170 countries, many offering to work at rates that match their lower cost of living.
Photo: Rafael Rozendaal