October 22, 2007

Help Wanted? Work Wanted?

If you live in Japan Just answer your cell phone:

Joi Ito introduces us to otetsudai networks:

With Otetsudai Networks, if you are willing to work, you sign up for the service with your skills and focus, take a GPS reading on your phone and then just hang out. If you are looking for someone for say... 3 hours to man a cash register or help wash dishes, you just send the request to Otetsudai Networks and within minutes, you have a list of people available. The list shows what each person is qualified for, how others have rated their work and exactly how far away they are. Typically you will receive a list of half a dozen or more people within a few minutes.
Amongst a zillion other things it would be interesting to find out:
  • How many of these part timers eventually go to work full time for one of the businesses they worked at.
  • If a business is frequently hiring folk for 2-3 hour shifts does the potential workforce start congregating closer to the business.
There are aspects of this that many business areas need to be moved toward:
It's also a perfect example of a location based, peer-to-peer reputation based, mobile behavior oriented product for an aging society.
Law and health care come to mind as easy examples. Almost completely missing from our interaction with the legal and health care system is a good reputation based evaluation system easily available to potential customers via a variety of easy to use network access methods: cell, web, etc. A
...marketplace, in which families armed with specific information about the treatment success and prices of hospitals and doctors can shop at will for the best quality and most affordable care.*
I'd rephrase this along the lines of consumers can shop at will for the quality of service and price that they prefer.

This type of information needs to be available for each of the monopolistic, read government licensed, service organizations.

Medical and legal licenses may provide a bit more asssurance that the holder knows something but when you get right down to it be it a hairdresser, doctor, real estate agent, lawyer or other state licensee all we really know is that they are licensed. We know nothing more about the quality of their work than that they have not been tossed out of their respective licensing organization. In many cases we know little to nothing about their fee structures.**

This needs to change.

*Strange, I just favorably quoted a paraphrase of a bush appointee's vision. Rather wrenching.

**Well, we do know that the typical realtor charges monopoly pricing.

Posted by Steve on October 22, 2007

It appears that quite a few of these people go work for at the place they get the temp job. That is one of the incentives. You can try before you buy. Otetesudai Networks charges a 50% to the "buyer" on top of the amount that they pay to the worker for the first engagement, which may seem like a lot, but for that they do not prevent being bypassed in the future for additional temp work or a full time job. This is a huge difference from temp agencies that either prohibit or charge a HUGE sum if you want to recruit someone that you really like that comes as a temp.

Posted by Joi Ito at October 23, 2007 4:48 PM

My company is working on a similar service here in the states.


Trust and reputation aggregation is a key feature of our system. We hope that reputation information for people and organizations will become a secure and internet-wide phenomenon. We'll help it get there.

Posted by Joe Edelman at October 27, 2007 4:32 PM
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