It's the best time in history to build your dreams in the UK

It might surprise you to learn that achieving your dreams is easier now than ever in the UK. The key is to adopt an innovative business model.
Jul 26, 2020 • 8 minute read
Edward Kost @EdwardKost
Technical Co-pilot
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Kaa Ukiwa Umesasishwa

Jisajili upate taarifa zetu iliwe ujulishwe na mada za muhimu.
Asante kwa kujisajili! Weka jicho kwenye kikasha chako kwa sasisho letu linalofuata.

Achieving your dream career is easier now than ever before.

When you log into your social media today, you'll likely be met with a stream of motivational posts persuading you to chase your dreams. Maybe you'll 'like' some of them. Maybe you'll share a few. Or maybe you'll go so far as to tag a friend. But regardless of your daily response, your follow up action always remains the same. Nothing happens.

Why is that?

Well, launching a business is expensive, most startups fail, and growing an idea into a highly profitable reality is extremely difficult.

But what if these boundaries are only in place because the current system is flawed? What if a reformation of the conventional business model will completely removed these boundaries, empowering anyone to achieve their dreams?

That would change everything.

In this post we'll examine the conventional business model and identify the alternative system we are naturally progressing into. 

What's wrong with the conventional business model?

1. Launching a business is incredibly expensive

Let's start by taking a look at some of the burdensome costs of launching a business with the conventional business model.

Office rental costs

Here's a breakdown of the office rental pricing and the associated costs for the average 5 person startup across 6 major cities in the UK:

Average yearly office rent in the UK

startup office rent in the UK

It's important to note that these averages are based on an office spacing ratio of 100 square feet per employee. As the Coronavirus continues to enforce stricter social distancing laws, this ratio will only increase, which will increase rental costs

Business assets

No employee starts a new job expecting to lug their personal laptop to work. Startups need to, therefore pre-purchase all of the necessary assets that will run the business. This includes computers for each employee and licenses for all the software you will need.

Let's break down some of the basic startup assets and their approximate pricing:

The pricing for software licenses vary between each industry. Here's a list of approximate pricing across 4 prominent industries:

When you see everything laid out like this, it can feel pretty overwhelming, and this is just a brief summary. It doesn't include other little requirements that keep flaring up like asset maintenance, replenishing stationary, printer paper, etc.

Hiring employees 

The most burdensome and stressful requirement of launching a business is hiring employees. It's hard to predict the future of the economy and, as the Coronavirus pandemic so vividly demonstrated, everything could literally change overnight. 

When you hire employees you're locked into an agreement to keep paying them a salary regardless of business seasonality. Not only is keeping employees on board burdensome, the entire process of hiring employees is incredibly costly and inefficient.

A study by the Society of Human Resource Management states that the average cost to hire an employee is $4,129. A 5 person startup would then cost around $20,645 to staff.

2. Onboarding staff is painfully slow

The same study by the Society of Human Resource Management states that the average time to fill an employee position is 42 days.

42 days?!

Let's take a look at the conventional process for onboarding staff to see why it takes so long.

First, you need to post job listings across different job seeker websites and pay expensive fees to publish each of them.

Then, you need to wait about 30 days to receive a substantial variety of applications. If you discontinue your ads before then, you could miss out on superior applicants.

Next comes the arduous process of reading through each of the applications and qualifying the best candidates for interviews.

Then, you need to interview each of your qualified candidates. Each interview could last between 30 minutes to 1 hour, and, if you have a high number of interviews to complete, this could take 1 or 2 weeks.

And that's just the first round of interviews. Shortlisted candidates might need to be interviewed again, ravaging even more of your precious spare time. 

Startups can't afford to waste so much time, they're constantly contending with both sprouting and veteran competitors, so they need to spend their limited time wisely. 

If you're lucky enough to secure startup funding, you want to impress your investors  with tangible progression as soon as possible. Your investors aren't likely to be impressed if you spend the majority of your first quarter onboarding staff.

3. Scaling is confusing and messy

Scaling is the most difficult phase of a startup and most business owners mess it up. In fact,  poorly managed scaling is the lleading cause of startup failure.

The problem with scaling is that you need to accurately expand your operations to meet expected demand. This process involves upgrading to a larger office and onboarding new staff. These decisions are incredibly risky because, if your predictions are wrong, the consequences could destroy your startup.

There are two highly possible negative scenarios:

  • Your business forecast falls short of your predictions and you're stuck with higher office rent and more staff to support. 

  • Your business forecast exceeds your predictions and the lengthy time to hire new employees stalls your progression.

In either scenario, you'll give your competitors the sudden opportunity to step over you and take your prospective customers. 

The conventional business is destroying promising startups

Our investigation has highlighted the gaping holes in the conventional business model. Since its inception at the turn of the industrial revolution, technology and consumerism have dramatically changed. A 240 year old business model is incapable of keeping up with the rapidly changing variables of running a business today. 

This dissonance could be the reason why many promising startups have failed. Maybe leadership decisions were not to blame, maybe it was the outdated business model from which those decisions were made. 

What is a superior business model?

Let's start by defining what it isn't. The new business model isn't a series of appendable solutions. Mere solutions won't sustain a startup through a tumultuous economic climate, and they cannot support the growth of a business deep into the future.

We don't need solutions, we need a system.

An example of a solution is asking your work colleague to give you a lift to work.

An example of a system is a lift request from a ride hailing app on your phone. 

The former could work very well when conditions are favorable (when your colleague is in a good mood) but once something changes, say you're running late, it completely falls apart.

The latter, however, is always available, regardless of the altered conditions. It's also highly efficient, just a few quick taps on your phone and you're done!

Systems work because they're not rigid, they adapt to your changing requirements and they're always available to support you. 

The ideal system for the current technological landscape needs to be fast paced. It needs to deliver quickly and adapt to change quickly. 

The innovative business model - the freelancing revolution

The superior business model is not a foreign system that'll completely upend the definition of business. We've already begun progressing towards it naturally, perhaps even unknowingly.

Let's take a step back to identify a pattern in recent developments:

The Coronavirus forced businesses to quickly adapt to a remote workforce setup. Since adopting this new setup, companies are reporting record productivity levels and cost savings. 

With no office rent to pay, businesses save an average of $11,000 per part time employee, so this new model of work is llikely to remain even post-Covid

Freelancing jobs have boomed amid the Coronavirus. Increasing numbers of businesses are harnessing the substantial overhead savings of hiring freelancer talent to complete ad hoc projects rather than hiring employees.

So what we see is a growing trend of a remote workforce and a growing trend of businesses using freelancers to economically fill talent gaps.

These trends obviously complement each other, creating a double helix spiralling towards the innovative business model we're currently stepping into. 

Let's take a look at how the freelancing revolution compares to the conventional business model:

1. Launching a business is cheap

Launching a business powered by freelancers is astonishingly cheap, this is what's driving the current uptrend in freelancing jobs.

  • There's no office rent to pay.

  • You're not locked into paying a yearly salary. 

  • There's no obligation to keep freelancers on board all year. Simply hire them whenever you need then for however long you need them.

There are also very few assets to purchase when you work with freelancers. Freelancers use their personal computers and they're already subscribed to the software you need to complete your project. So software licensing costs are almost completely eradicated.

These drastically reduced overheads make launching your own business powered by freelancers incredibly profitable.

2. Onboarding staff is lightning fast 

Hiring freelancer talent reduces the time to hire from 42 day to just a few minutes. This is a mind blowing improvement. 

Unlike the conventional method for hiring staff, freelancers can be hired in just 3 efficient steps:

Step 1: Post a project for the talent you need. You can also post a contest if you want freelancers to demonstrate their skills before hiring them. 

Step 2: Wait for freelancers to submit bids (or proposals). Freelancers bid on your project and summarize how they will complete it based on their skill sets, so there's no need to waste time interviewing each applicant.

Step 3: Take a look at the ratings and feedback of your desired freelancer from previous employers. You can also peruse their portfolio of work displayed on their profile.

The freelance hiring process can be further optimized into just a single step. Now you can hire a Technical Co-Pilot to find the best freelancer talent for your unique project. They can also completely manage the project from start to finish and be the single point of contact between yourself and your team of freelancers. 

Hiring freelancer staff is not only much faster, it's much cheaper. In fact, it costs nothing at all. Posting a project on Freelancer.com is 100% free.

3. Scaling is clean and controlled

Scaling freelancer teams is less risky. You don't need to upgrade your office and sign new contracts and you're not obligated to keep any of your freelancers on board all year. If your growth forecasts are too optimistic, you can instantly discontinue working with your surplus freelancers.

On the contrary, if your growth forecasts fall short you can scale your business incredibly quickly because freelancers can be hired in a matter of minutes.

Scaling is further optimized with the assistance of a Technical Co-Pilot. They can scale your freelancer teams on your behalf based on your communicated requirements.

technical co-pilot freelancer.com

As your business continues to scale, you can hire multiple Technical Co-Pilots to manage multiple teams. Not only will this keep your lines of communication extremely efficient, it will liberate you from having to manage freelance staff, allowing you to solely focus on business strategy.

technical co-pilot freelancer.com

So with the support of Technical Co-pilots, you can now scale your business faster than ever before and with very little risk. That'll put a smile on any investor's face.

This innovative business model is not just a mere solution, it's a complete system. The freelance model can seamlessly mould to both your changing requirements and the fluctuating economy,

The ultimate proof of this is the invaluable support it's currently offering businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. Without the freelance workforce, businesses would have no chance of surviving the recession.

Final thoughts

The formidable boundaries of the conventional business model makes launching a business extremely difficult and extremely risky. The innovative freelance business model, however, empowers anyone to start their own enterprise with minimal investment, minimal risk and maximum profit. 

And because the Freelancer platform is also available as a mobile application you can have instant access to global talent across any industry, on the go.

So if you get struck with sudden inspiration on the train, you can now pull out your phone, post a project, and take an immediate step towards your goals. The pathway to personal progression has never been this easy. We are living in unprecedented times.

Don't waste this opportunity. It's the best time in history to build your dreams.

Kaa Ukiwa Umesasishwa

Jisajili upate taarifa zetu iliwe ujulishwe na mada za muhimu.
Asante kwa kujisajili! Weka jicho kwenye kikasha chako kwa sasisho letu linalofuata.

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