The Society of Mobile Workers

Backdrop

As more people opt out of the daily office grind and companies find efficiencies in restructuring full-time roles and contracts, workers may find themselves stretched across a range of projects and clients in diverse environments, resulting in a more flexible, but less predictable lifestyle; creating more freelancers.

Service
The Society of Mobile Workers is a service tailored to the needs of freelancers. It works by partnering with all of the co-working spaces in a city, alongside freelancers’ favourite cafés, to build a database of hot desks in the coolest urban spaces.

Access

The service is accessed via an app and website. There are three engagement levels: free, Pay-As-You-Use and [paid] subscription, depending on where a freelancer wants to work and how often they wish to use the service. We understand that scheduling a day around clients who run late and public transport that’s unreliable, can be challenging, so the app syncs with Google calendar to reveal the best workspaces based on work style preferences and meeting location. By checking in and out of every workspace, billable time is meticulously tracked – making invoicing much easier and freeing up more time for work that matters (paid effort).

Research

The service prototype was supported by feedback from:

  • 14 in-depth interviews with freelancers and consultants in the US, Denmark, Norway and the UK.
  • Freelance meetups with artists, data scientists and product consultants
  • Visits to 4 co-working spaces, 2 libraries and 3 cafés in Copenhagen.

These insights informed our “service blueprint”, website and app, as well as the technical prototype to simulate an RFID check-in card and device. These service touchpoints were then updated over a two-week period with feedback from the freelance community. Details of the website can be found on https://societyofmobileworkers.squarespace.com. 

Technical prototype: swipe card and check-in terminal

We created a check-in simulation leveraging an Arduino MKR1000 microcontroller, RFID card of ‘Adafruit PN532 RFID/NFC Breakout and Shield’ and Processing. Details of this prototype can be found on Github.

 

STUDENTS