The gig economy has grown exponentially in the past few years. Workers are more interested in jobs that can guarantee flexibility. The emergence of freelancing platforms like, Upwork, Fiverr, Uber, and Freelancers have increased the number of freelancers in the world today.
Recent trends have also shown that corporations tend to outsource a fraction of their jobs to independent contractors. However, it’s not all smooth sailing for the gig economy. The emerging economy is plagued with problems like contract disputes and unethical behaviors. Yet, traditional freelancing platforms have not been able to offer innovative solutions to counter these problems.
However, the emergence of blockchain-based freelancing platforms are about to change all these. These platforms utilize blockchain technology to create a network that can allow its user – both freelancers and clients- access functionalities that can guarantee transparency and increase productivity.Blockchain allows transactions to be stored in a decentralized and distributed ledger. It is mostly recognized as the facilitator of cryptocurrency, however, it has been revealed that it can do much more than this.Therefore, we will be taking a look at the innovative solutions blockchain technology will be contributing to the gig economy.
Freelancing is marketed on traditional freelancing platforms as the route to taking charge of your career. However, this promised benefits seems to be contradicting the business framework of this platforms. Majority of traditional platforms charge up to 20% of every successful transaction between freelancers and clients. For a system that promises financial independence isn’t it ludicrous that it demands so much from its users? On the other hand, blockchain-based platforms charges as low as 0.1% as transaction commission. This means that freelancers can indeed be a part of a network that gives them true power over their career.
The blockchain is designed to notify all the nodes of a network on every confirmed transaction carried out within the network. This functionality gives blockchain-based freelancing platforms an edge over traditional freelancing platforms. Blockchain-based freelancing platforms will automatically notify all the participants of the network on all completed projects. Therefore, freelancers are able to build a public resume that cannot be hacked, falsified and manipulated. The user’s resume on the blockchain will help clients assess the qualifications of the freelancer.
Blockchain-based freelancing platforms can also allow freelancers to put copyrights or intellectual property rights on their projects.
One of the major limitations of existing traditional freelancing platforms is that contracts on them can be altered because the majority of deals are made on verbal agreements. Unethical clients or freelancers are capable of holding payments and finished projects as ransom so as to force improved deals. Blockchain allows freelancers and clients to agree on project deadlines, project fee, and project quality on smart contracts. Therefore the submission of projects to clients and payment of agreed fees will only happen if only the terms in the smart contract are met. This will eliminate cases of late payments, late submissions, and altered contracts.
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