The rise of on-demand services which send customers a driver, a meal, groceries, or pretty much anything else they want has produced a step-change increase in convenience for consumers. These services are effectively providing consumers with on-demand labor to perform a specific task.
Similar services providing on-demand labor for businesses have so far focused on tasks that can be completed remotely. Freelancer platforms let companies access developers, marketers, business students, and other on-demand labor sources who can work for them on a project basis. But what about work that requires an on-site physical presence?
E-commerce companies looking to staff their warehouse, supermarkets looking to staff their checkout counters, and hotels looking to staff their reception desk during times of peak demand still largely depend on staffing agencies. However, this no longer needs to be the case. Equipped with smartphones, individuals should be able to make their short-term on-site labor directly available to businesses.
This is exactly what our new investment Wonolo (short for Work Now Locally) does. Founded by AJ Brustein and Yong Kim, the platform has thousands of vetted workers available on-demand for the temporary staffing needs of companies. Current customers include Coca Cola, The Home Depot, and Zenefits.
Wonolo’s impressive traction since their December 2013 launch, combined with the attractiveness of a large unaddressed market, makes us optimistic about the company’s future.