We just read Accenture's Technology Vision 2017 report and they strongly suggest independent work is the future of work.
Key quote from their Work Force Market Place trend:
In five years or less, the presumptive judgments around full-time employment and freelancers will flip completely. Compared to traditional full-time employment, talent marketplaces will provide workers with improved earning opportunities, more rewarding work, secure benefits, and respected credentials.
They go on to say that the digital transformation of labor and the growing use of talent marketplaces are "the railroad tracks of the digital era".
They back this up with another prediction:
In the next five years, on-demand labor platforms will emerge as a primary driver of economic growth in developed and emerging economies worldwide.
The report chart below shows how Accenture sees labor markets evolving.
These are some of the most aggressive forecasts we've seen in terms of the growing role independent talent will play in the near future.
But they certainly are possible.
Digital transformation is accelerating at an accelerating pace. This is putting pressure on businesses of all size to increase their agility and flexibility, which is driving the growing use of contingent talent.
The Accenture report is another signal showing how quickly corporations are increasing their use of non-employee labor.
This employment shift by corporations, is getting very little media coverage. It also is not widely discussed in DC policy and think tank circles. These groups are focused on Uber, Airbnb and other consumer oriented gig economy platforms.
But the increasing use of external on-demand talent pools by corporations large and small will likely have a greater impact on the future of work.