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Uses of AI for freelance and modern work

Işınsu Unaran
December 9, 2021

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has gained popularity in recent years and is expected to become an essential tool in achieving success for companies worldwide. Countless statistics suggest how artificial intelligence can boost work productivity in many ways, and as the uses of AI continue to diversify, some experts believe that a future without AI is unlikely.

Artificial intelligence can increase the productivity of employees in two significant ways. It can:

  • enhance the skills of the human workforce
  • automate processes for repetitive tasks

In both scenarios, it is evident that the future of freelancing will be based on the collaboration of people and artificial intelligence.

Transforming landscape of work: New jobs, new titles, changing labor demand

Job titles and requirements are changing with technology. 15 years ago, ‘data scientist’ wasn’t a professional title, and today it’s one of the most popular jobs in the world. Yes, some of today’s jobs may disappear because of the advancements due to AI technology, but there will be more new jobs that we may not imagine yet.

For example, until the 1790s, authorities in England didn’t allow sewing machines because they thought it might disrupt the current textile economy. In the end, technology replaced human labor and created new areas of production for people. Today we have a giant textile and fashion sector. This process is called ‘creative destruction,’ resulting from innovations increasing productivity while eliminating specific economic sectors.

As technology continues to advance, dynamic changes in staffing and training will continue to occur. With the development of new technologies, the skills businesses demand from workers will also change. For instance, according to a study by Citrix, there will be jobs such as:

  • Robot/AI trainer
  • Virtual reality manager
  • Design thinker
  • Chief of artificial intelligence

Another significant potential scenario is the monetization of previously unpaid domestic work, according to McKinsey. As more women participate in the workforce, the trend to pay for services that substitute for currently unpaid work may rise, their study suggests. The following titles are expected to grow in volume with widespread uses of AI:

  • Healthcare providers
  • Specialists & professionals (engineers, scientists, accountants, analysts, IT)
  • Managers and executives
  • Educators
  • Creatives (artists, performers, entertainers)
  • Manual and service workers (home-health aides, gardeners)

More productive freelancers with AI

While there’s an evident sentiment that artificial intelligence will replace people, the reality is far different. In fact, by freeing workers from tedious tasks, artificial intelligence will help put people in more positions of need and want in the workplace. Especially in creative fields, being freer from time constraints will be enriching for professionals.

Forbes cites executives as supporting the claim that artificial intelligence will increase productivity: “Almost three-quarters of business leaders (73%) believe that technology and AI will make workers at least twice as productive by 2035, while only 39 percent of employees share this vision, the researchers also find.

Artificial intelligence can increase employee productivity in several ways, but not all of them are successful. One of the most widely discussed uses of AI regarding increasing employee productivity is machine learning and statistical analysis. This technology allows you to spot patterns within your business’s data and make decisions as a result.

In the future, as AI will master more scientific and industrial disciplines, these tasks will be incorporated into routine processes. An AI system can spot patterns or irregularities better than a human. It can also process large amounts of data that a human would have difficulty digesting.

A new means of teamwork

Since it does not need sleep or breaks, an AI system can perform cognitive tasks 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Therefore collaborating with AI will give a competitive advantage to freelancers.

Developers will be able to code faster and improve their more human-like designs. Artificial intelligence can assist lawyers in retrieving documents and spotting trends in cases they’re involved in. Accountants may use bots to complete data entry tasks, but they’ll appreciate the assistance.

The collaboration with AI has already started. There are AI tools widely used by freelancers such as:

It seems clear that AI is the fuel that will drive the considerable expansion of freelance work we’re starting to see today. The big question is: “How can humans and machines work together to create a more sustainable freelance market, one which creates opportunities for everyone?” Artificial intelligence engineer Will Lee suggests, “Each freelancer can find work and make a living due to their ability to differentiate themselves from others in the freelance market.

Freelancers are already experienced in adopting new improvements–they are flexible and creative. That’s why compared to other employment models, freelancers will find ways to be more productive with AI in the future.

Uses of AI in freelancing & what solo talents think

By looking at the trends and numbers, we see that currently, AI is not disrupting freelancing; it’s helping freelancers thrive. We believe freelancers learn ways to benefit from artificial intelligence technologies much faster than payroll employees. To explore the uses of AI in freelance work, we reached out to Ruuler solo talents in the EU region.

Our research has explored if freelancers are collaborating with AI. The results of our in-depth analysis with 100 freelancers* working across different industries in European countries are as follows

44% of freelancers use AI for their projects, 40% plan to use AI in the future

Only 14.8% said that they do not use or intend to use AI tools or services while doing their freelance projects. Considering that AI technology only appeals to early adopters at the moment, we can say that the number of freelancers adopting AI will increase rapidly, and more freelancers will look positively toward working with AI in the future.

Freelancers use AI to be more productive and efficient

60% of the freelancers participating in the research declared that they are using AI to be more efficient. This answer is followed by ‘getting help for repetitive tasks’ with 20% and ‘minimizing human error’ with 16%.

Only 7.4% believe that AI could threaten their jobs

48% of freelancers don’t think their jobs can be taken by AI, while 44% believe AI can decrease the importance of their jobs.  

Seizing the benefits of AI for a bright future

In the end, we agree with Max Tegmark’s remarks on AI: “Everything we love about civilization is a product of intelligence. So amplifying our human intelligence with artificial intelligence has the potential of helping civilization flourish like never before — as long as we manage to keep the technology beneficial.

For more think pieces, insights, and news on the latest modern work trends, keep following Ruul Blog. Connect with us on LinkedIn and Instagram, never miss an update.

* The occupational distribution of freelance professionals participating in the research is as follows:

Web & software development (17.9%)

Design & creative (21.4%)

Sales and marketing (21.4%)

IT & Networking (17.9%)

Consultancy (14.3%)

Writing (10.7%)

Engineering and Architecture (7.1%)

Data science and analytics (3.6%)

Translation (3.6%)

Admin Support (3.6%)

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