Geek Sessions - Cheaper, Better, Stronger, Faster
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Geek Sessions - Cheaper, Better, Stronger, Faster

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Gary Swart, CEO of oDesk, spoke at the Geek Sessions Event in San Francisco on February 24.

Gary Swart, CEO of oDesk, spoke at the Geek Sessions Event in San Francisco on February 24.

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Geek Sessions - Cheaper, Better, Stronger, Faster Geek Sessions - Cheaper, Better, Stronger, Faster Presentation Transcript

  •  
    • oDesk is the marketplace for online workteams with the best business model for both buyers and providers
      • For buyers: Guaranteed work
        • Every hour billed is an hour worked
      • For providers: Guaranteed payment
        • Every hour worked is an hour paid
    • Background
    • 24 Employees, 43 remote oDesk consultants
    • HQ in Menlo Park, CA
    • Funded by Benchmark, Sigma, Globespan, & DAG raised $29MM to date ($16MM in the bank)
    • Started in 2004
    • Where are we today?
    • Over 200,000 tested and rated knowledge workers representing hundreds of technical disciplines & skills
    • Both individual freelancers and development companies from 150+ countries
    • Buyers post both Fixed Price Jobs and Time-Based assignments
    • Buyers pay by the successful job or for verified hours worked
    • Avg. time to hire is < 4 days; Avg. # candidates per job is > 18
    Over $60MM in gross services delivered What Is oDesk?
    • Doing more with less
    • Smaller teams getting more done in less time with less money
    • Development to infrastructure demanding more efficiency across the board
    • Using modern frameworks, automation, sane capacity planning, and solid analytics to do more with less. Way more
    Objectives
  • Tools
  •  
    • Cost of nearly all of the software development tools
    • we use at oDesk
    “ Free or better”
  • Annual cost of Google Apps
  • Process
    • Hierarchy
    • Friction
    • Bureaucracy
    • Inflexibility
    • IT-driven technology / Lack of user control
    • Top down
    • Centralized
    • Teams are in one building / one time zone
    • Silos and boundaries
    • Need to know
    • Information systems are structured and dictated
    • Taxonomies
    • Overly complex
    • Closed/ proprietary standards
    • Scheduled
    • Long time-to-market cycles
    What is different today?
    • Flat Organization
    • Ease of Organization Flow
    • Agility
    • Flexibility
    • User-driven technology
    • Bottom up
    • Distributed
    • Teams are global
    • Fuzzy boundaries, open borders
    • Transparency
    • Information systems are emergent
    • Folksonomies
    • Simple
    • Open
    • On Demand
    • Short time-to-market cycles
    Enterprise 1.0 Start-up 2.0
  •  
  • Cost to acquire an oDesk buyer in 2006
  •  
    • Harvest demand before creating demand
      • Search – SEO and SEM
      • SMM (blogging, Twitter, Facebook)
    • Make your product easy to buy
    • Leverage your customers/users to get the word out
    • Share whenever you can - e.g., oConomy, blog, speak at events ;-)
    Cost to acquire an oDesk buyer today … … and the volume is up 7X
  • People
  •  
    • Hourly cost of Bay Area-based CSR
  •  
  • Hourly cost of Philippines-based CSR
    • Annual all-in cost of oDesk’s 43 FTE remote team
    See http://www.odesk.com/w/case_study_odesk
  • Hire the right people the right way
    • Right skills?
    • Employees vs. contractors?
    • Full-time vs. part-time?
    • Local vs. remote?
  • “ oDesk is a great way to make it feel like an employee who is across an ocean is working inside your local office” - oDesk Buyer Guaranteed work; Guaranteed payment
  • Average Hourly Rates by Job Category Sys Admins Developers Designers Consultants ( blue ) Proj. Mgrs ( green ) QA Testers Tech Writers Data Entry Pros
  • Average Hourly Rates (US) Sys Admins Developers Designers Consultants Proj. Mgrs QA Testers Tech Writers Data Entry Pros
  •  
    • Opportunity cost of doing the wrong things
    • Test and learn vs. boil the ocean
    • Ruthlessly cut what’s not working
    • Leverage the “extended enterprise”
    • Questions - [email_address]
    • Acknowledgement
      • Slides inspired by Guy Kawasaki
      • See https:// url.odesk.com/~klszu