Online Workers Doing Fine, ODesk Passes One Million Hours A Month

While full-time tech jobs might not be making a roaring comeback, freelance and part-time work seems to be picking up the slack. One data point just came out today illustrating the shift to freelance and online work. Online outsourcer oDesk passed one million hours of work on its system for the first time in the month of August. A year ago, workers on oDesk were logging less than half of that, about 400,000 hours per month. Online hiring is up 129 percent since last year, compared to flat employment growth in the larger economy.

The work on oDesk is spread across 215,000 employers and 720,000 contractors, whose desktops are monitored by oDesk’s software. The top three job categories on oDesk are Web Programming, Web Design, and Blog & Article Writing. Cumulatively, employers have paid out more than $185 million to online workers through oDesk, up from the $100-million mark last October.

A couple other key stats: eCommerce sites are hiring 70 percent more Web developers than a year go. While many of these online workers are overseas in the Philippines, India, Pakistan, and Russia, the U.S. is the the largest source of online workers on oDesk. California is the top state for virtual workers, and the top ten cities in the U.S. where virtual workers live are:

  1. Manhattan
  2. Los Angeles
  3. San Francisco
  4. Austin
  5. Chicago
  6. Pittsburgh
  7. Brooklyn
  8. San Diego
  9. Miami
  10. Charlotte