Despite all of the growing pains and negative press, the emergence of the "gig economy" is quite fascinating and increasingly valuable.
And the freelance services marketplace category, specifically, is growing fast.
But, and here's an important catch, most of these "freelance" marketplaces are populated with tens of thousands or even millions of full-time employees (commonly in emerging markets) looking for extra cash from “side hustles”.
That isn't necessarily a bad thing, but...
MeasureMatch is not one of these marketplaces.
While MeasureMatch is indeed a services marketplace, it is very different.
To start, the MeasureMatch platform enables the buying and selling of enterprise systems and data professional services. These services are provided by consultancies, agencies and systems integrators, as well as independent consultants (representing around 50% of service providers in our global network).
Service provider profiles for agencies, consultancies and SIs are fronted by the founders or lead practitioners in their firms.
Those service providers that are self-declared independent consultants (many refer to themselves as "freelancers") are commonly referred by us as "solopreneurs" because they deserve the entrepreneurial credit. They are busting their butts and they really are awesome.
And we know they're awesome because we've either interviewed them or they've been invited to participate in the marketplace by technology vendor partners using MeasureMatch's Partner Hubs to scale, support and invest in their channel, services and go-to-market partnerships.
And MeasureMatch's vertical orientation, solving for marketing, commerce, customer experience and related analytics business challenges is especially unique and valuable.
The service providers in our network are regularly doing high-value implementations, configurations, system integrations, troubleshooting and related data management, data engineering and data science project work. That's centrally it.
On occasion, our customers also need strategic advisory services, but those are edge cases. We pride ourselves on being instrumentation and execution-centric.
In practice, that means we’re seeing demand for skills like these:
Oh, and we’re obsessed with quality. Under 20% of service provider applicants are onboarded into our network, after an interview call. And we automatically screen out all FTEs looking for side hustles.
On the demand side of the platform, around 70% of client applicants are approved. That's right, Client account applications are regularly turned down because we out network of service providers are worth it - they want to see project briefs from clients with specific, clear business needs, and with budgets.
Technology vendor participation in the MeasureMatch marketplace is an enormous differentiator, too.
The combination of clients, service providers and technology vendors is incredibly valuable for all parties – each of these MeasureMatch customer constituents benefit from technology vendors participating in Service Partner Hubs, which centrally helps us to add another layer of verification to further engender trust in the quality of the platform.
Lastly, but very importantly - there is no race to the bottom here.
The platform experience we’ve designed is highly private, extremely high quality and getting even better. And it prevents MeasureMatch marketplace buyers and sellers from sliding into bidding wars yielding a low-utilization, lose-lose equation and environment i.e. a recipe for disappointment, failure or worse.
Again, there are several generalist freelance services marketplaces out there, most populated with tens of thousands and even millions of full-time employees in emerging markets looking for extra cash from “side hustles”.
The MeasureMatch professional services marketplace platform is not one of them.
Internet Trends by Kleiner Perkins 2018
Investors regularly ask “scale” questions. They annoy me. Yes, the questions and, often, the investors.
The pitch and dream of “Software as a Service” (aka SaaS) and self-service software systems are long dead.