Why 3Desk?

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It’s rather strange that in the interconnected, multicultural, permeable world in which we live most people have a job with a single company and most companies employ permanent staff.

Work is often undertaken in a single location, with a fixed team that is chosen by others. People earn a salary that changes only yearly and incrementally. It often only vaguely matches the contribution of that individual, if at all. Corporate ‘culture’ is mostly dictated, projects pre-determined, holidays limited to legal minimums and rules and regulations created to ensure managers can manage.

This is the modern slavery.

Employees work for a single company, with all of its quirks and features. People will spend years locked into offices, for the majority of their waking lives.  There is too often a disconnect between someone’s desires and dreams, and what they are forced to accept.

Savvy investors would never invest all their savings in one stock and yet we do that with our working lives – investing in one job at a time.

People are either in, or they’re out. Employed or unemployed.

At least that’s how it’s been and is… mostly.

Owing to recession, technological advances and mobility, things are changing. A recent article stated that over 50% of the US workforce will be freelancing, temporary or contingent workers within 10 years.

We think that is really, really exciting.

The employment landscape is shifting. Online freelance marketplaces, like Elance and Odesk, enable more and more people to work remotely, to choose their projects.

However, the majority of people who want work ‘face-to-face’ or ‘in-person’ across the globe – on building sites, oil-rigs or on movie sets… from those working for the UN in refugee camps to those providing primary care. These platforms don’t cater for working in person.

Closer to home you’ll find drivers, caterers and healthcare workers working in part-time roles. Even in offices, there are graphic designers, architects, engineers, marketeers, project managers and many more who for a multitude of reasons don’t have ‘full-time’ jobs.

Huge swathes of the population in almost every country in the world remain unemployed against their wishes.

At 3Desk, we believe that the future of work will be freer and more flexible. People will be ‘agents’ rather than employees. We want people to have more choice. The unemployed should be able to find small pieces of work that means they can get back to work.

Imagine a liquid market for talent, in which someone knows their value. A market in which people choose who they work for, when they work and for how much.

Our dream is that in 20 years, the majority of the Harvard MBA graduation class will choose to freelance because of the advantages it brings – working with people they like, choosing their own projects, setting their own terms or choosing a 3-day week to spend time with their kids.

Sure, there are benefits to working full-time. A salary and the ‘safety net’ that a company provides Teamwork and collecting people together around a singular goal. We’re not extolling the removal of organizations, but instead making them more porous and flexible so they can achieve more.

Imagine employers being able to choose the talent they need as and when they need it. Instead of bringing in a big consulting firm to work on a problem, what if they were able to select the best 12 people in the market instead? Imagine paying solely for their skills, without having to cough up for the company’s marble atriums, secretaries and employment structures.

Imagine if the unemployed could find pieces of work in their neighbourhoods, to help bring in small pieces of income and charities could achieve more by bringing in experts who are able to set aside 20% of their working days for causes they believe in, regardless of the pay.

Although a long way off, that’s why we started 3Desk - because we believe that both employers and employees want more security AND more flexibility – and it is only possible by creating a liquid temporary marketplace, where people understand their true value, that they are able to work the way they want to, with the people they want to.

It’s early days, but in time we’d love to try to help people feel that freelancing had all of the benefits of a full-time job, with less of the negatives.

If you like this vision and want to know more register with us and more importantly, tell your friends.

“Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work and driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for  - in order to get to the job you need to pay for the clothes and the car and the house you leave vacant each day so that you can afford to live in it” – Ellen Goodman

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49 thoughts on “Why 3Desk?

  1. Pingback: Bristol Freelancer Interview – Aaron Geis | 3Desk

  2. Sounds great! I’ll look forward to seeing what you make of it. Freelances are always keen to use fair, secure job marketplaces. :)

    Best of luck, and shout if there’s anything you think I could help with.

  3. It Sounds good. I am really looking forward to the uniqueness of the system you are providing. Most Freelancers / Employers / Clients are keen to use simple, secure marketplaces to cater to their needs, as well as having Reviews for both the parties. If everything goes well, then I hope we can make this site a big marketplace. You have nothing to lose, but to gain! So keep trying to get the best.

    Thanks a lot. Wish you all the luck.

  4. It is a very novel & creative thought of uniting or bringing various professionals on a single platform from where they can interact to each others benefits & also share many common things. However the success would depend on many things for this unique thought.
    Let me wish you the very best in this operation.

  5. I just received this from one of my Linkedin friends.Thanks to him for providing me this link.
    It is a great endeavor what you’re doing at 3Desk to bring up all the professional freelancers under one ‘roof;.
    I wish all the success to 3 Desk and my heartiest thanks to the entire team.

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  7. This is a very brilliant move. I’m thrilled about the whole idea & looking forward to getting opportunities here and getting an extra income. Thank you & keep up the good work.

    • I have been a freelancer and wrtier for 15 years and I have never had a website and I have been able to get work.I don’t think having a website automatically equals work unless you are writing out of state and nationally. Since I work largely locally, I like to meet with editors if possible and show them my work.However, Iam considering putting up my resume and clips at some site since work has slowed to a crawl this year for me, the biggest drought of my career thus far.

  8. For me being rooted in one corporation is a form of living death, it’s just too limiting, too routine, it stifles true creativity. We are the generation who will change all of that, doing work we really want to do in the way we want to do it, picking our own hours, briefs and context. The key part of freelance is ‘free’, as a writer this talks to me on a very fundamental level. I’m so not into pecking orders, office politics or being a good drone. You work a long time so why not have some control over it, why not enjoy it?

  9. Hi, A friend introduced me to this platform….. I have no doubt this venture will be a successful one and soon, I hope, the concept of human resource dynamics will change all over the world… Looking forward to benefit from this….All the best.

  10. Hello,

    Appreciate the mission of 3Desk. This is a new perspective to eradicate unemployment. It will be pleasure to be part of freelance team as knowledge sharing as well as self help and also peer review are highly possible in this mode.

    Thanks and regards
    Raghunandan S
    Freelance trainer; India

  11. I have registered recently to 3Desk and lets see how it goes!!
    Definitely this a very good platform being provided for free lancers or small organizations and for that thanks and congratulations to the founders.

    I wish all the very best and look forward for the fruitful utilization to sell ones product, skills or services.


  12. Now am even more motivated to freelance. My society believes in being employed not considering that it is possible to freelance yet be stable. I believe in freedom and not being confined at one place…… I support 3Desk

  13. Yeahhh, it’s exactly my idea about the world. We live in a “no dreams” system and I think it’s time to make some changes. Your idea is great and I look forward to see if your system will work for people like me and a lot of other who are decided to change something in this world.

    Congratulation and thank you for your brilliant idea

  14. Well, this could also benefit skilled people who are not eligible for the job market anymore, because of age (even 40+). Many companies want to employ young people with some skills who are prepared to work for a lower income. This is especially true as a result of the economic recession we’ve experienced the last couple of years. Through 3Desk, these unemployed skills should not go to waste. Well done 3 Desk. Here’s hoping this is the start of something great!

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  16. Although I have done freelance work for companies all over the world, via platforms like Elance for several years now, I am concerned about the proliferation of ‘freelance farming’. This practice is undermining the ideal of creating a more flexible working environment for those who want to freelance.

    In fact, it has achieved the opposite.

    The proliferation of freelance platforms has commoditized freelancing to the point where no one can make a living out of freelancing anymore, because more and more companies are resorting to freelance farming to get jobs done on the cheap.

    Instead of screening candidates for skills and ensuring that job posters are actual end users, most freelancing sites become a platform for labour brokers who post jobs at rock-bottom rates, and take the difference between these rates and what they charge the actual client.

    Unqualified candidates undermine good freelancers by accepting jobs at these sweatshop rates and give the freelance industry a bad reputation to boot.

    I wish 3Desk well, but hope you have some form of vetting system for job posters and candidates alike, or – in my honest opinion – you will be adding to a growing problem.

    • Well said. I’m finding myself hustling ‘price-pointed’ work more than ever before and diluting my unique purchase appeal.

      Hirers smell the blood in the water and are taking advantage more than ever before based upon my experience. Sadly, I would be too probably!!

  17. Many thanks for the welcome note; I hope that 3Desk achieves its aims, and your aims.

    I had a quick look at your blog, and I agree with you that the “relentless progression” for “advancement, ambition and entrepreneurship” is crazy; not only is it driving people towards disliking (or even hating) what they do, but the continuous urge to grow your business is causing environmental havoc and massive exploitation of scarce resources. When I read that a factory in China employs 90,000 workers, I wonder what life must be like for them !

    Networks of small enterprises and free-lancers work best.

    All the best,


  18. I think 3Desk is definitely the way to go for someone like me who has almost always been self employed. I am multi-talented and therefore must be given the opportunity to work in all areas of personal expertise. Plus, multiple income stream is not a bad idea at all… I’m IN

  19. As a freelance photographer for over twenty years, insuring that you are identifying quality opportunities with realistic rates, and by that I don’t mean “get real, my nephew will do that for a quarter of what you want to charge”, but rather, rates that reflect the true cost of living in a large urban centre, will need to be the key difference between yourselves and other similar endeavours.

    Here’s keeping my fingers crossed.

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  21. I’ve worked in a ‘normal’ job for many years, and, more recently, I’ve been freelancing for another number of years, both ‘face-to-face’ and from ‘home’. I’m convinced that freelancing is the way to go, at least for me. Great initiative from 3Desk, which receives my fullest support.

  22. I have been a freelance writer my whole life and over the past decade or so, I’ve added producing and directing. I work on mostly television and movies (indie features, Lifetime, NBC, PBS, etc.) and teach and consult (on screenwriting and indie film business plans) but I have production managed computer-based training continuing education for companies like Mazda, created videomarketing for companies like Toshiba and Belkin, designed and written the content for websites for a state and city and products and services galore, and done infomercials for the City of Hope and products in the AirMall magazine as well as in-flight programming for Delta. Here and there, to even out the wild roller coaster of income that is the life of a freelancer, I write RFPs for a major healthcare company, through an intermediary agency. I’m going to guess that easily 20% of their (mostly salaried w/benefits) 800K workforce works from home – far flung – communicating mostly on conference calls and e-mails. I haven’t met a soul (in that crowd that I work with) – and that’s odd but it’s also the wave of the future, I think. They had a no contractor policy a year or so ago – that they broke with me for a busy season off a high-up and directly-responsible personal referral. And since then? They’ve set up a Boot Camp and hired a team of freelancers and independent contractors – so they are certainly putting the resources in that direction. It’s tough to beat the face-to-face collaboration and synergy of a writer’s room or a production set, but it’s also tough to beat working in your PJs and avoiding any and all commutes (when possible). It’s a mixed bag. There’s a huge part of the major corporations pawning off taxes, benefits and unemployment on their workers (i.e.: in that contract, I pay both sides of the income taxes), but with this fiscal cliff looming, I’d say we’re all fools to think anyone else is looking out for our financial future then ourselves anyway. The more diverse, far flung and eclectic our client base can be, the more we can weather geographic or industry-specific storms of any economy. And the more we are aware of – and proficient in – all the modern tools available to us, the better work/life balance I think we’ll all be able to achieve. Best of luck to all! ;-)

  23. This looks to be a great concept – good luck. Due to undergoing surgery quite soon, I shall be reliant on the web for work for six to eight weeks, because I shall be unable to drive and this would appear to be the answer to my prayers.

  24. I’ve tried to freelance on my own and it didn’t work out for me only because there were limited options. Having a bunch of options for projects sounds exciting and may just be the spark I’ve been needing to reenergize my love of design work. For the last few years it’s been wanning for me due to no variation for the very reasons your statement points out. It will be interesting to see, as a designer, how coordinating the software between companies would pan out. I think it could be problematic since not everyone uses software universally compatable. Anyway, I would LOVE to work as a freelancer if I could make a living at it. I’m anxious to start with some smaller projects to “test the waters” so to speak.

  25. The real trick is getting serious employers and quality freelancers together. There’s a critical mass factor, but getting the best freelancers without having to weed through a bunch of inexperienced or flaky people is tough. For many businesses there is also the cultural challenge of keeping everything in-house or at least with temp workers tethered to desks on-site.

    I tend to travel a lot and like the productivity a distributed team can achieve — but it is very difficult to get to that point. I’d also agree that nothing beats face-to-face contact. And temp “recruiting” agencies that have nothing but sales interns cold calling and sorting resumes and an ADP account for handling payroll are ripe for being replaced.

  26. GReat seems we have freelancer this yer would do collaborative to each other face to face in the field of virtual working independently.

    have a good new year

  27. I love the streamlined and easy approach that 3Desk uses to connect freelancers to opportunities! The time I save by not writing “proposals” will be time I can use to actually get work done.

  28. Thanks …3Desk.. I am eagerly waiting for your reply. I am also waiting for some good opportunity to work with. Thanks for your support and Thanks to the one who sent me the link. waiting.

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