Gig Economy: Discover the movers and shakers in freelance job postings

Gig Economy: Discover the movers and shakers in freelance job postings

Copy typing, javascript and creative skills saw the sharpest growth on in the third quarter, while gigs in maths, statistics, algorithms and report writing dropped off. 

Jobs relating to website development and internet applications were among the highest growth categories in the three months to September on, an online marketplace that includes 30 million people across 247 countries. 

With its head office in Sydney, analysed almost half a million job postings in the quarter to seek out trends in a sector that is becoming increasingly common for skilled professionals as they adapt to a more flexible and casualised labour market.

"As host to the world's largest single freelancing and crowdsourcing community, has unique insight into the major trends and shifts of the global online jobs market," says CEO Matt Barrie (pictured) .

"With jobs in over 1,000 categories in disciplines such as science, engineering, the arts and business, provides perhaps the most granular and detailed view of the freelancing market around the world."

The fastest growth was seen for copy typing at a rate of 27.21 per cent and more than 5,200 postings, followed by jobs for React.js - an open-source JavaScript library often employed to develop user interfaces for mobile applications or single page applications (SPAs) - with growth of 25.73 per cent and 2,121 postings.

The previous quarter's fastest growth category - active server pages (ASP) - came in third with 21.75 per cent growth and 2,138 postings. This was followed by Adobe Flash, Word, data processing, social networking and Facebook marketing.

There were more illustrator jobs on offer than any other role with 27,948, representing the highest growth in volume with almost 3,400 extra postings coming online. 

The second most popular gig was data entry with 26,884, followed by data processing with 13,282 and research writing at 12,274. Both data-related categories saw growth but writing jobs in general experienced declines.

The fifth-largest role in terms of postings was in Photoshop design with growth of 7.29 per cent.

Video Production another creative skills area utilising digital tools that saw notable growth at a rate of 8.29 per cent.

The rise of video production comes roughly a year after members of Forbes' Young Entrepreneur Council suggested in late 2017 that live video and Instagram's IGTV vertical video application were among the top 10 digital marketing trends entrepreneurs should be watching.

Jobs with declining demand

At the other end of the spectrum, jobs involving mathematical skills have seen a sharp swing south. Jobs involving mathematics as a standalone discipline, for example, experienced a 31.17 per cent quarter-by-quarter fall to 1,948 during the three-month period.

Mathematica and Matlab, two software packages related to mathematics that are used in engineering, scientific and mathematical branches of study, experienced an even sharper decline of 34.16 per cent to 2,170.

At the same time, statistical analysis and statistics jobs declined by 26.30 per cent to 1,166 and 25.82 per cent to 1,652 respectively.

Also involving mathematical skills, algorithm-related jobs saw a 27.85 per cent fall to 2,153.

Trends on the horizon

Blockchain has received a lot of attention over the past few years, with the cryptographically-enabled technology being considered for applications in a wide range of industries.

The various cryptocurrencies Blockchain underpins such as bitcoin have also received a lot of attention, thanks largely to the volatile nature of the value associated with these digital currencies.

While not among the top 50 movers during the quarter, jobs involving Blockchain fell by 1.36 per cent to 1,302.

This may have something to do with the spectacular tumble the cash value of bitcoin has taken since it peaked in December last year. As reported by Bloomberg, bitcoin fell to a nine-month low in September 2018.

However, it remains to be seen whether Blockchain-related jobs will continue to fall in volume, regardless of how bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies perform over the coming months and years.

According to TechRepublic, IT industry association CompTIA has ranked Blockchain among the top 10 types of technology that could offer the greatest potential business operations success.

Machine Learning, another job category that saw a quarter-on-quarter slide with a decline of 6.65 per cent to 1,698, may yet see an uptick according to, as demand for artificial intelligence and machine learning skills continues to grow.

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