The digital revolution has sparked many changes, but few are as significant as the shift in how we work. The digital age has created an entirely new workforce of independent contractors who enjoy flexible schedules. But it’s not all good news. Digital tools have also led to job insecurity among workers, who feel more vulnerable than before the digital revolution. In this blog post, we will discuss how independent contractors can adapt in this new environment.
As we all know, the growth of the pandemic has expedited the spread of digital transformation in all industries. It has had the collateral consequence – mostly as a result of smart working – of making new technologies even more crucial. And that is what digital transformation is, in essence: the process of the development of business models, starting from the ongoing improvements in technology.
The emergence of new digital tools, hardware, and software has resulted in and continues to feed a drastic transformation in company culture, work techniques, and workflows. As a result, the digital revolution is causing an evolution in the construction sector. Let’s look at how construction has changed and is evolving as a result of the digital revolution.
What Is The Digital Revolution?
Since around 2000, massive changes in digital technology have swept the globe. Among these advances are online music streaming services, on-demand television, and social networking sites. While we design some of these technological advances solely for personal use, others may also be useful for businesses. This is where things get interesting for independent contractors.
Digital technologies have allowed companies to communicate with their employees in new ways. Many employers no longer require an office because remote working is now possible. As a result, they are increasingly turning to remote workforces composed of independent contractors who can set their own schedules. This digital revolution has allowed workers to enjoy more flexibility than ever before, so they now have less job security.
The transition from mechanical and analog electronic technologies to digital electronics as a way of storing, conveying, and using information is seen as the beginning of the digital revolution.
It began in the second part of the twentieth century with the acceptance and spread of digital computers and digital information storage. As a result, more complicated computer systems capable of digitally reproducing and automating formerly arduous mathematical tasks have been developed.
Why has it evolved into a revolution?
Digital technology has the ability to constantly modify itself, gradually spreading out and increasing productivity across a wide range of sectors and businesses. Certain events accelerated the widespread adoption of digital revolution technology, forever altering the way we exchange and utilize information and ushering in the information age.
How Does It Affect Independent Contractors?
The digital revolution has affected nearly every aspect of business, communications, and the economy. This trend is not showing any signs of slowing down as digital technology becomes more advanced with each passing day. Independent contractors are also affected by this digital transformation positively and negatively. This depends on how they choose to adapt their businesses through technological advances.
For example, new technologies allow independent workers access to countless new clients without having to go through an intermediary. However, it becomes increasingly difficult for them to stand out amongst an ever-growing crowd within online freelancing marketplaces. Today’s digital world brings both exciting challenges and opportunities, which will be explored further below.
Opportunities For Independent Contractors In The Digital Age
The digital economy has created entirely new opportunities for independent contractors. Here are just a few examples:
Technology has made it possible for digital workers to work from anywhere with an internet connection easily. This includes working remotely or even traveling around the world without having to worry about missing important deadlines.
Freelancers now have access to online marketplaces where they can be instantly connected with millions of potential clients looking for digital services. These platforms also provide instant feedback on completed work, allowing digital freelancers to improve their skills over time to remain competitive.
Flexible Work Schedule
Technology has allowed digital workers more flexibility in setting their work schedule, which can be beneficial for those who are unable or prefer not to work in an office environment.
This also means that freelance digital workers have somewhat less control over how many hours they work per day and during times of peak demand, creating possibilities for employers to exploit digital workers in the absence of clear guidelines regarding expected work hours.
This also makes it more difficult for both employers and employees to keep track of all the hours logged during work. A quick way to resolve this problem is to generate paystubs online to make the process quick and smooth.
Customers have been empowered by digitalisation, and we have gotten accustomed to utilizing that power. If we want to buy anything, we can find it online, pay for it, and have it delivered with little regard for the firm or location from which we are purchasing. We can select where we receive our news, where we get our music, how we fly overseas, where we stay, and how we get to and from airports. If we don’t like a company’s service, we’ll switch to another and tell our friends about the one we’d want to punish.
Customers no longer need to visit a store or office, and they may overlook a company simply because someone else’s web URL appears higher in the Google list. As a result, a digital revolution strategy contains client focus. The creative process of seeking for technology-driven possibilities is done through the eyes of actual or potential clients.
Digital Marketing Strategy
A digital strategy is when a company or organization thinks beyond how things are done now (or have always been done) to consider how digitalization may enable things to be done differently, often extremely differently. It is the creative process of identifying technology-driven business growth prospects. It is investigating how the company may expand (or prevent the enterprise shriveling as new competitors do the growing instead).
If supplies and materials don’t need to be over-ordered to accommodate for erroneous measurements or being unable to trace their positions at the job site, savings ensue. Independent contractors and staff don’t have to wait as long while bottlenecks are addressed, savings follow.
If excavations are correct, there is less need to transport landfill away and less machine time.
If more debris can be transformed into construction materials on-site, less potential building material will be wasted in landfills.
Mistakes and rework are reduced.
There would be fewer costly surprises during excavations and tunneling if better surveying techniques were used.
If everyone is using the same BIM, there will be fewer mistakes caused by having inconsistent versions of a design in circulation.
The potential of wrong measurements is reduced when machines are controlled by BIM.
When construction is watched using smart helmets, the risk of errors is decreased since the as-is and to-be states may be examined simultaneously.
Acceptance or rejection of suggested design modifications might be done faster and with eyes wide open if the ramifications of proposed design changes are instantly reflected in the schedule, cost, and maintenance timeline.
Throughout the operating period of a building, there would be fewer surprises during maintenance or improvements as the owners would have the whole design in the BIM.
Challenges For Independent Contractors In The Digital Age
During the digital revolution, one of the biggest challenges is the saturation of hundreds of thousands of digital workers, which makes it increasingly difficult for digital freelancers to stand out among the crowd. Unfortunately, this also results in increased competition and a lower pay scale, as there are more digital professionals than potential clients ready and willing to hire them.
As a result, independent contractors may have much less control over how many hours they work per day and during specific periods of peak demand. This creates opportunities where employers could exploit workers if they do not set strict guidelines surrounding working conditions.
How Do I Get Started?
Once you have a digital product or service to sell, it’s time to find your first digital customer. Anyone with an internet connection can be a potential client in the digital age, but how do you reach them?
As mentioned above, platforms such as Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer provide freelancers access to millions of clients from all over the world, no matter what type of digital service they provide.
Once you gain your first few clients, you’ll need to make sure you generate your 1099 promptly to avoid financial liabilities as a freelancer.
Digital technology has changed the way we live, work, and communicate. While it is difficult to predict how the technological advancements will affect workers 20 years from now, one thing is certain: digital communication will continue to play a significant role in our everyday lives as more people move away from traditional forms of communication such as face-to-face interactions or phone calls.
Technology continues to advance at an unprecedented rate, which means new opportunities are being created every day for digital professionals who have access to proper education and training to stay ahead of the curve when adapting skills needed within their field. Success will come to those who are hard-working and adaptable to the rapid change brought about by the digital revolution.