The digital world is changing the traditional job market. Changes to how we work are complex and multifaceted, influenced by demographics, economics, and technology.
A seismic shift towards digital has been spearheaded by younger generations, but its adoption has been universal.
Nowadays, people are looking for more flexible work, wanting to work a few jobs at once and improve their work-life balance – digital gives people the opportunity to explore, experiment, and earn without the usual ties of office, coworkers, and formal education.
Here are some key things you need to know about the digital scene… and how digital may change your career one day too!
What does the digital market offer people?
Why are so many people (both young and more experienced professionals) looking to the digital and tech world for career opportunities?
- The power of digital lies in the industry’s flexibility, as well as the internet’s global reach and universal appeal. There is a niche for everyone and everything online as the internet becomes more and more central to our daily lives — it makes people feel connected and empowered. The digital world acts as a leveller, enabling previously marginalised voices and groups to be heard
- People are drawn in by the freelance opportunities that digital offers: hence the rise of the entrepreneurial ‘side hustle’ enabled by the digital world (whether that’s blogging, ecommerce, social media coding, or web design)
- People without (or with fewer) formal qualifications can carve out their own digital career. It’s completely possible to become a self-taught digital ninja (developer, designer, writer, strategist) using online learning tools
- Digital jobs and skillsets scale well — you can stay small, or grow quickly. Virtual assistants and working from home mean that overheads are low and potential wins big
- Digital pays well. Here are some 2016 digital salary ranges that show how competitive the industry is in terms of income; though many internet marketers like to court so-called ‘passive income’ that comes in through advertising or affiliates
- New digital opportunities like VR and AR are spawning startups capitalising on emerging technology — it’s a great place to be for innovators and thinkers
Digital gig economy gives people flexible working options
The days of working one job 9-5 and staying with the same company until retirement are over. People are looking for flexible work and dynamic career opportunities that will fit around their lifestyles — and that’s where digital steps in.
- Young people are increasingly looking for opportunities to travel and volunteer abroad as part of their education. Clueing up on digital skills means that young people can earn money on the side by documenting their travels online with a blog (or vlog)
- The rise of mobile and online services like Uber and Airbnb means that people are able to supplement their regular income by offering other services on the side. (And new legislation is rising up all the time to clarify gig worker rights)
- A flexible income can be made entirely online by using popular freelance websites like PeoplePerHour and Upwork. In digital freelancer communities, it doesn’t matter where you are in the world – if you have a skill, you can get paid for it. Popular freelance gigs include writing, SEO, web admin, social media management, web design and development
How you can benefit from digital
The way to benefit from the digital marketplace is to work with it, not against it.
- Get clued up on digital skills – don’t get left behind. There are lots of free online courses, including Google’s Digital Garage, which is perfect for small businesses and professionals looking to benefit from digital
- We all know that employers and associates check social media profiles like Twitter and LinkedIn when they recruit. Build up a credible personal brand online. Make sure your profiles are updated and compelling; be careful about what you choose to share online
- Starting a business has been made easier than ever with digital cloud tools that automate everything from invoicing to marketing, lowering the barrier for people starting their own businesses in Ireland, and launching a new breed of Irish entrepreneurs
- Want to have a stab at being an online entrepreneur on the side? Start your own blog, open your own online store, or start selling on Ebay! There are loads of ways to get involved in the digital marketplace, and the great part is, it doesn’t have to cost the earth
Has the digital world impacted your job? How and why? Share your experiences with us below.