The Way We Work
May 19, 2010 by Erica Benton

In our recent Online Employment Situation Summary (a companion to the Bureau of Labor Statistics monthly Employment Situation Summary), we took a look at the $8.6M worth of online work performed last month to discover the types of work most requested by hiring employers.

While certain technical work still rules the roost (Web Programming and Web Design, we're looking at you!), there were a few new entries to the top 25 that caught our attention. Marketing is hardly a new business skill, but certain specialized areas are enjoying increased demand.

#25 Search Engine Marketing

While SEM has hovered in the top 25 work categories before, it's the growth seen in this area over the past year that is truly staggering. Up 27 places on the list since May 2009, folks with the skills to optimize web sites, drive link building, and build social bookmarking are finding themselves in a field that is in high demand.

SEM pros have increased in demand - up 27 places - over the past year.

SEM pros have enjoyed a staggering increase in demand over the past year.

#24 Telemarketing & Telesales

Like many types of work, the growth in telemarketing and telesales over the past few months seems to be tied directly to the recession. Online telemarketing professionals are a natural fit for businesses looking to expand into new markets without large investments . Up both month-over-month and year-over-year, folks with the people skills to engage users and customers by phone are enjoying a long-term growth curve in demand.

#19 Social Media Marketing

Social media has become a platform that is easily accessible to anyone with internet access. It also opens doors for companies to increase brand awareness and facilitate conversations with customers in a relatively inexpensive platform. It should come as no surprise that social media marketers are on the "HOT" list - Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other popular social networking sites seem to be constantly top-of-mind for both businesses and consumers. Holding steady at rank number 19 this month, SMM earned that spot by climbing from #60 since last May.

Twitter demand growth - a clear indicator social media marketing is enjoying an ongoing growth curve.

Twitter demand growth indicates social media marketing is enjoying ongoing growth.

Want to see how your skills stack up? Check out the Online Employment Situation Summary to see which categories are in demand, how much work has moved online every month, and where in the world online work happens.

Erica Benton

Social Media Guru

Erica Benton joined oDesk in 2009, bringing with her nearly a decade of small business and freelance experience, and a love of all things social. Her passion for startups, technology and marketing was born during her tenure with Kulesa Faul Public Relations, while she learned the art of entrepreneurship firsthand through Equine Alternatives, a business she founded while earning her Bachelor of Science degree from… read more