Online Hiring Shows Steady Growth

Online hiring is on the rise with strong demand for mobile, social media, open source ,and cloud computing skills in particular according to data from online talent marketplace Elance.

Benjamin Tomkins, Contributor

April 12, 2010

3 Min Read

Online hiring is on the rise with strong demand for mobile, social media, open source ,and cloud computing skills in particular according to data from online talent marketplace Elance.Data released today by online talent marketplace Elance points to positive growth in online labor. Earnings of the professionals with technical, marketing, and business skills that are available for hire through Elance are up almost 40% year-over-year. In the first quarter of 2010 the Elance talent pool earned more than $20 million. With the recent Labor Department numbers for March clinging doggedly to 9.7% unemployment despite 162,000 new jobs and the InformationWeek IT salary survey indicating flat growth in IT salaries, the Elance Online Talent Report represents a welcome bright spot and yet another proof point for online employment.

Commenting on the report findings, Elance vice president of marketing, Ellen Pack, said, "Businesses are increasingly incorporating more flexible work arrangements, self-employed workers and a shift to using online workplaces into their strategy. Companies are turning to online talent for mobile development, open source, social media and cloud computing, making these the fastest growing skills in demand on Elance. In fact, businesses are finding it easier and more cost-effective to hire certain types of talent online, rather than onsite."

Breaking down the data by skill category reveals four areas that have saw significant gains in demand last quarter.

  • Mobile - The biggest increase in demand was for mobile development skills. The category moved up 21 places in the IT category and shows a 98% increase in job postings

  • Social Media - Social media jobs cross the IT and Marketing categories on Elance with specific demands for Facebook Development, social networking apps, and social media marketing

  • Open Source - Open source technologies comprise one fifth of the top 50 IT skills in the Elance IT category with content management systems leading demand and database, e-commerce, mobile, and web server also strongly positive

  • Cloud Computing - Cloud application development is surging in demand with web services and Amazon Web Services big movers and need for professionals with PHP, ASP.NET, and Python in particular.

Looking at the geographic breakdown, the Elance report indicates that domestic US Talent ranks first in the creative category and second in the marketing and operations categories. India holds the top position in the IT, marketing, and operations categories.

The top US Cities by earning were:

  1. New York, NY

  2. Los Angeles, CA

  3. Dallas, TX

  4. Amarillo, TX

  5. Chicago, IL

  6. San Francisco, CA

  7. Portland, OR

  8. Brooklyn, NY

  9. Austin, TX

  10. Atlanta, GA

Amarillo, the surprising name among the leaders zoomed into the top 5 from 20th position in Q4 2009.

The top US States by earnings were:

  1. California

  2. Texas

  3. New York

  4. Florida

  5. Illinois

  6. Pennsylvania

  7. Washington

  8. Ohio

  9. Oregon

  10. Georgia

The complete findings of the Elance Online Talent Report are available here.

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