Friday, October 01, 2010

Working from an Employee Cloud

Ready For a Change reviews Michael S. Malone's book The Future Arrived Yesterday. The book describes a possible scenario for future corporations and future workers, one where corporations are small core operations and the majority of workers are drawn, as needed, from a cloud of contractors, freelancers, or consultants.

To me, cloud employment is already happening where some organizations hire people as temporary workers for projects when needed. For example, tax preparation companies hire a large number of seasonal employees for the January 1 to April 15 tax season. Another example are the standardized test grading companies that staff up during testing season. Finally, the hiring Census employees over the past two years is another excellent example. However, the use of cloud employees is not a widespread practice.

For most of my retiree part time jobs, I consider myself a cloud employee. I'm called in, based on my availability, when needed and off when not. The benefits are I can work when I want, choose the jobs I like and take off extended periods. The downsides are few or no employer provided benefits and lower pay which aren't issues for me since I have retiree benefits. Also for those interested in full time employment, cloud employment may create work gaps as one transitions between jobs.

For more on Reaping the Rewards, check back every Friday for a new segment.

This is not financial or job advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

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