These are interesting times to be a freelancer. Technology has made the freelancer’s client list global in scope, while companies can pick and choose among a workforce that is always ready to contribute. Video conferencing, IMs, shared worksheets and all manner of remote communication mean streamlined workflow.
But when it comes to payments, the pace has been less revolutionary and more evolutionary. Paper-based payments are less than ideal, and firms paying across borders must track documentation effectively, as well as contend with currency issues and the preferences vocalized by the workers themselves.
Against this backdrop, work automation firm Work Market has announced two offerings that seek to speed the time to payment along the conduits that workers desire. In an interview with PYMNTS, CEO Stephen DeWitt said that the model for employment has shifted away from one that had been put in place by companies such as Ford, with a defined workforce laboring across a set number of shifts or hours. The model has been shifting, he said, to one that can be illustrated by Uber, with pools of workers spread across different locales.
The availability of Fast Funds Mobile, said the executive, lets freelancers come to firms with tasks, completed, in hand, with payment upon the client (or firm’s) approval. Payment through the firm’s eponymous mobile app allows for speedier payments and an easier time of reconciliation at the back end as payroll functions are streamlined across a central platform. The other feature, titled Off-Platform Payments, can enable workers to be paid in their local currencies.
There are further advantages of the direct payment system, said DeWitt, as firms eliminate third-party attempts to bring firms together. Even the smallest mom-and-pop stores, said DeWitt, can compete for workers. As such, databases and knowledge dovetail with this freelancing population, and firms can get a 360-degree view of the competitiveness of this work pool, assessing just who might fit in with a project at any given time.