I’m as disappointed as anyone about the weak economic recovery we have experienced in 2010. And I could not be more disappointed about but the piss-poor state of education and culture of indulgence in America. We do face a long-term structural problem in the economy as a result of our mixed up priorities.
However, as the class warfare deepens and the prospects for our public school kids fade (my kids included), I’m not as concerned about my personal economy or my companies economy in the long run. As entrepreneurs and knowledge workers, our economic future is no longer simply the American economic future.
Job boards are at the forefront of the torturous changes reshaping our economy. And you can learn a lot about our future by browsing job boards for technology jobs. Doesn’t it shock you that in the depths of this tremendous recession, there are 3,000,000 or more openings? Isn’t it surprising how many of your friends, neighbors, or acquaintances are not participating in the recession? We are currently struggling to fill a technical position in our Florida office. Talk to an ecommerce recruiter or an employee at Apple and you’re sure to hear ‘What recession?‘.
What of economists like Robert J. Gordon of Northwestern University who say Internet driven productivity growth has run its course?
…there’s no reason to predict another technological revolution like the Internet boom, which briefly boosted productivity in the early 2000s. Gordon says the past decade has disproved economists who believe that the Net had a “magic quality” that would speed up productivity growth for an extended period. That was a common theme for investors at the time of the tech boom of the late 1990s, when some “New Economy” believers insisted that productivity growth had reached a new, higher plateau. Not so, says Gordon: “What we’re going through now is a transformation to smaller devices without a change in the basic idea of computers communicating with each other,” he says.
What rubbish. If you are struggling to fill a knowledge worker position as we are and you post that position on a job board, you are likely to find good candidates who live in the wrong place. A different city, different state, and maybe even a different country. That’s how job boards are leading the next productivity boom and destroying the ‘American economy’.
We open your eyes to candidates outside your geography. When a hiring manager decides to hire a telecommute or virtual worker who is more qualified than a local one, his company’s productivity goes up. At the same time, his economic prospects improve as his company identifies less with the local economy. When entrepreneurs start hiring the most qualified individual no matter where he or she lives, our economic future is no longer the American economic future, we are tied instead to the world economy in knowledge work.
Job boards do this. Job boards create productivity. We push employment to wherever education, drive and creativity are strongest. If it doesn’t look like a boom now, just wait. The decline of American education will create a frenzy for telecommute talent in the decades to come. And job boards will be there to facilitate the introductions. You can count on it.