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Blockchain and the Gig Economy – Two Hot Items Cross Paths Through CanYa’s Hit Marketplace

The demand for both blockchain technology and gig economy work has led some startups to focus on combining the two.

Harald Merckel

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A decade ago, if someone went on the evening news and said “Digital currencies will yield annual returns in excess of 100%,” he or she would have been laughed out of the room into oblivion. In reality, this person would be spot on. The demand for all things “crypto” has been soaring the past several years. Studies indicate that there are anywhere between 2.9 million and 5.8 million unique active users of cryptocurrency wallets. There are almost 2,000 people working full time in the industry, and these numbers are expected to continue growing. The numbers speak loud and clear – blockchain technology is here to stay.

On a somewhat related note, the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics has taken note of the growing gig economy. A report released last year by another research body showed gig economy growth in a variety of industries, including the ground transportation industry which has seen the number of gig economy employees increase more than 44% over payroll employees.

What do blockchains and gig economies have in common? Aside from the fact that some take gig economy jobs as freelancers for blockchain companies, not much. Until now. The demand for both blockchain technology and gig economy work has led some startups to focus on combining the two. The end result– decentralised gig economy marketplaces.

Related: The Rise Of Digital In Shaping Business Terrains

Gig Economy Meets Blockchain Technology

In the current gig economy, service providers and clients connect through a third party, usually a site like Upwork, Craigslist, or Guru. These sites all charge fees, usually a percentage, for the different tasks needed to see a job through–listing an ad, payments, invoicing, etc. Enter blockchain technology, which operates as a decentralised ledger. On blockchains, all transactions and interactions are transparent and direct. No third parties are needed, meaning there are no extra fees.

One company, CanYa, is looking to shake up existing gig economy marketplaces by creating their own marketplace that operates independently of third party involvement–via blockchain technology. CanYa’s platform is a meritocracy in the truest form – the best service providers with the best rates will get the most business, while poorly performing and fraudulent providers will be dinged, and at worst, completely removed. Despite running on a blockchain platform, the interfacing with be smooth and simple, and can even be navigated through an app downloadable on iOS and Android devices.

So how does the platform revolutionize the gig economy? First, client’s can load their CanYa wallets with CanYaCoins, the platform’s native token, as well as crypto and fiat currencies. This means services can be provided from anywhere, an especially helpful feature in today’s global digital landscape.

Second, clients who purchase services pay no additional fees. The cost as advertised by a provider is the price they will get. Though the emphasis is on home and digital services, the beauty of the platform is that users can work together to create niche markets. Clients can help discover and verify new service providers with novel ideas, allowing them to prove their skills and gain traction in the marketplace.

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Related: 11 Things You Need To Know About Bitcoin

Third, service providers can earn CanYaCoins which can be exchanged for free or spent in the app. Service providers don’t have to stay service providers; they can be clients too. Additionally, providers can freely advertise their skills and expertise, but also use their hard earned coins to pay for a monthly featured status. In essence, the blockchain platform incentivises both parties to do business with each other. Honest and open interactions are fostered by the very design of the blockchain platform.

Those interested in participating in CanYa’s coinsale can access it through their website. The sale will begin on November 26th, 2017, and run for a month or until all of the coins are sold.

Harald Merckel is a freelance writer whose primary focuses are business, e-gaming and marketing. Although he loves tech gadgetry as much as the next guy, Merkel prefers to write with pen on paper. Merkel has a B.A. in Business and Communication from HWR-Berlin, where he was active in the Studentenwerk Berlin organisation. He has been a proud Berlin resident since the late 1990s.

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Rethinking Learning In The 21st Century

The changing world of work has disrupted the three elements of the traditional ‘career’: Expertise, duration, and rewards.

Wits Plus

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Traditionally the concept of a ‘career’ was considered to include three elements:

  1. A career represented our expertise, our profession, and ultimately our identity.
  2. A career was something that built over time and endured. It gave us the opportunity to progress and advance.
  3. A career gave us financial and psychological rewards. It made life meaningful and paid us enough to live well.

The changing world of work has disrupted all three elements: Expertise, duration, and rewards.

A career can now be as long as 60 years; at the same time, due to rapid advancements in technology and the changes that bring about in the workplace, skill sets can become obsolete in as little as five years.

Increasingly, companies need to rethink the way in which careers are managed and learning opportunities are delivered, and many have already begun to overhaul their career models and L&D (Learning and Development) infrastructure in line with the digital age.

Related: Your Investment In Knowledge

Employees’ learning behaviour is also changing. In the past, employees were able to obtain the skills required for their career early on and as a once-off; now, the career itself is a journey of learning, up-skilling, re-skilling and continuous reinvention to remain relevant and to thrive in the changing world of work.

Older employees who studied at a time where most of one’s learning occurred prior to entering the workplace, find themselves working alongside millennials who place greater value on learning and progression rather than on earning potential as a first priority.

Eighty-three percent of the respondents surveyed in Deloitte’s 2017 Global Human Capital Trends survey say their organisations are shifting to flexible, open career models that offer enriching assignments, projects, and experiences rather than a static career progression.

However, in today’s fast-paced business world, even if companies are restructuring L&D delivery, no one is going to make you engage in a strategy that is essential to your future success – continuous learning. You will have to take the initiative yourself.

Noted self-help expert W. Clement Stone, in his many writings on this topic, recommended that one spends anywhere from a half-hour to two hours a day in study and thinking time. This tireless dedication, combined with an insatiable curiosity, will equip you to excel in the future world of work. What’s more, learning new skills and knowledge can be fun!

The good news for both companies and for employees is that an explosion of high-quality content and digital delivery models offers employees ready access to continuous learning. The Wits DigitalCampus offers a range of accredited and fully online short courses to support your continuous learning.

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Your Investment In Knowledge

When you understand the value of knowledge, in this world where technology is rendering previously expensive products or services much cheaper (and even free), it’s just a matter of getting more of it. Dedicate yourself to constant learning!

Wits Plus

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Most people spend their lives collecting, spending, and worrying about money — so much so, in fact, that they say they “don’t have time” to learn something new.

However, some of smartest and busiest people in the world — Barack Obama, Warren Buffet and Bill Gates — all spend at least one hour a day on deliberate learning. They see what others don’t: That learning is the single best investment of our time that we can make. As Benjamin Franklin said long ago, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”

When you understand the value of knowledge, in this world where technology is rendering previously expensive products or services much cheaper (and even free), it’s just a matter of getting more of it. Dedicate yourself to constant learning!

One of the very benefits of ongoing technological advances is that it empowers an accelerated and personalised learning experience that puts the learner in the driver’s seat. Modern learning harnesses the speed, power and ubiquity of digital capability. Online platforms, software and mobile devices means that the traditional hurdles to learning — such as income, status and location — have just about disappeared. Knowledge can now be gained by anyone with the passion to pursue it and the commitment to stick with it.

Related: Building Customer Relationships

We are only at the tipping point of what future learning technology can deliver. Artificial intelligence (AI) will transform all aspects of human capital management, including learning. Technology-enabled learning will be immediate and directly relevant to the task, for example:

  • personally tailored learning content and experiences delivered to you as and when you want or need them
  • chatbots and virtual assistants can source and categorise the information that you need for optimal decision-making
  • augmented and virtual reality simulations can provide a multi-sensory experience to speed up and embed learning.

Additionally, social connectivity already enables user-generated content to outpace and outstrip what traditional education and learning institutions can deliver.

Knowledge may be the new money but, unlike money, you don’t lose it when you use knowledge or give it away. Transferring knowledge anywhere in the world is free and instant. It’s fun to acquire and it makes your brain work better. It helps you think bigger and beyond your circumstances. It puts your life in perspective by essentially helping you live many lives in one life through other people’s experiences and wisdom.

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Are You Struggling To Find Financing For Your SME? Try Alternative Finance

If you don’t qualify for traditional funding or if it isn’t the right fit for your SME why not explore alternative funding? We specialise in alternative financing options by providing in-depth and custom plans for you and your business needs.

Spartan

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Alternative Finance is finance beyond the traditional – it is defined by the financiers’ area of specialisation – by what they specialise in, whom they serve, and how they provide their funding. It does not replace traditional finance but rather functions as a complementary and additional form of funding.

Alternative financiers are specialists – they focus on a particular need and on a specific audience. As a result their ‘how’ is customised to deal with their chosen target market and for this targets unique needs. This applies to the funder’s processes and to their level of flexibility around things such as collateral.

An example of this is that a SME may have an existing R1 million overdraft (their traditional finance) secured by R 1.5 million collateral but suddenly they need R5 million for some kind of contract or bridging finance – they need it fast and don’t have that extent of collateral.

The traditional funder cannot provide what they need, their process is too long and their flexibility is too low. An alternative financier providing bridging finance and specialising in SMEs is ideally positioned to fill this gap.

One of the most significant differences between a traditional funder and an alternative financier is in their process. In the case of the alternative financier, they have often chosen to deal exclusively with a particular customer base, for example SMEs. As a result, this funder has both an affinity and contextually relevant empathy in working with SMEs.

Not only do they speak the same language the funder also has an appreciation for the time and material constraints of the SME and has developed their processes to cater to this market. This applies most notably to the turnaround time of the funding need and to the assessment aspect – where flexibility around things such as collateral is vital in making the finance happen for the SME.

A traditional funder is unable to meet the deadline of a bridging finance need, submitted on an urgent basis, where the finance is needed as soon as 2-3 days from time of application. A specialised or alternative funder is able to do exactly this. A traditional funder is also unable to find creative methods in solving the SMEs lack of high-value collateral in applying for finance.

This SME has generally already used their high-value collateral for traditional credit facilities but now needs funding for growth or resolution of a temporary cash flow challenge. An alternative financier is able to look at such an application in a different way, and has most likely already established alternative ways to make this happen for the SME.

Related: 5 Key Questions To Answer For Raising Funding

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