Expert Insights

Jeremy Johnson
CEO & Co-Founder


Andela is a leading marketplace for developers, engineers, product designers, and technology experts. Beyond the platform, Jeremy has spent over 15 years unlocking the power of global, digital networks to drive business change.

Jeremy hit on a couple themes that every single one of us needs to be aware of.

1: The blurring of freelance and full time

2: The science of managing remote freelancers at scale

3: The macroeconomic climate, specifically how our space has never been more attractive to Enterprises

He also gives us the inside scoop on how their recent acquisition of and Codewars enables them to assess and deliver human potential more effectively.

Our Favorite Quotes

Why did Jeremy start Andela?

  • Our core premise for Andela is that brilliance is evenly distributed even if opportunity isn’t. And over time, it seems kind of obvious to me that that’s going to shift. People are going to be able to build careers commensurate with their ability, rather than where they happen to be located or who their parents were.


What advice do you have for leaders hiring freelancers?

  • “One of the easiest ways to screw this up, is not to treat freelancers like fully embedded members of your team. The more you help them understand your company, the more effective they can be as freelancers.”
  • “People talk about, oh, we’re the top 3%, top 2% of talent. It’s such bullshit, like every time someone says that, just stop reading. Like that is not actually true. What matters is not even how good someone is on an individual basis, but it’s how good they are relative to what needs to get done and how good of a fit they are.”


How have you been impacted by the FY23 macro climate?

  • “From a macro standpoint, what we’re seeing right now is the venture backed world is definitely struggling. They’re really trying to refine what they have to get done right now. On the other hand, what we’re seeing from an enterprise standpoint is leaders saying, how do I get more efficient? The enterprise business, actually Q4 of 22 was one of the best quarters we’ve ever had, because you’ve got more large companies realizing well, it is kind of obvious we’ve gotta figure out global talent. I think that drives people towards flexible options and more efficient options. And I think that contracting and bringing in especially long-term, fully embedded freelancers becomes just an obviously good idea for companies. And so I think we’re going to see continued growth in this space, especially amongst larger companies.


What is the impact of ChatGPT and increasing Generative AI tech?

  • “I think this is gonna be a fundamental shift in how humans interact with each other in the world. And freelancers are in position to benefit as much as literally anyone on the planet.”
  • “I think the level at which freelancers are gonna be able to have an impact is gonna go up dramatically.”
  • “As long as humans have problems, there will be need for people to engage in and solve and help with that. And this is gonna be no different, I think more powerful, more of a seismic shift in how people operate, but no different in a sense that it makes our minds more powerful and it will make the best freelancers, the best employees, the people who are most comfortable leveraging it that much more impactful.”


Where is the freelance economy going?

  • “I think this entire market is gonna grow. Ultimately we’re looking at a shift in how the world thinks about finding and engaging with talent. And that is gonna be part-time, full-time, like everything in between.
  • What you’re gonna see is that individual freelancers are gonna be able to have much bigger impacts and in some ways operate as if they were their own agency, like as if they were a larger, more established entity in the way that they engage.
  • “Where I think that you’re gonna leverage a freelancer is to say, hey, I need to build a site. I need to launch a campaign. How do I manage the entire process? And you might actually get a proposal from someone. That person may have used chatGPT to actually generate the proposal. You may reference check that to make sure that it makes sense on chatGPT. But then you need someone to actually execute against it.


How do you see the Venture landscape adjusting over the coming years?

  • You’re going to see a crazy amount of interactivity in the space over the next three to five years. This is going to become one of those things where the entire venture world will talk about how to realign human capital. Human capital is the most under appreciated, but also underutilized asset on the planet. We’re going to see a realignment of how companies think about human capital. It’s gonna create massive productivity gains. Connect that into how quickly AI is gonna ship things this year. And you’re going to see the best freelancers and the best talent, across the board.

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