Intuit Launches Intuit Workforce – Independent Workforce Ecosystem Continues to Develop

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Intuit announced this week the launch of Intuit Workforce, a new product that will extend the company’s increasingly dominant footprint in the emerging digital ecosystem supporting the administrative needs of the fast growing independent – or as Inuit generally refers to it, “on-demand” – workforce. Intuit Workforce is a complement to QuickBooks Self-Employed, launched earlier this year. Whereas QuickBooks Self Employed addresses the administrative needs of independent workers, Intuit Workforce addresses the needs of businesses managing engagement of independent workers.

What Is Intuit Workforce?

Intuit acquired PlayBook HR in March, which Intuit described at that time as “a leading solution for on-demand marketplaces to manage the hiring, onboarding and compliance needs of independent contractors.” Playbook HR has become the basis for Intuit Workforce, the business complement of QuickBooks Self Employed.

According to this week’s press release, “Intuit Workforce is a free product that provides companies with everything they need to manage their relationships with on-demand workers from start to finish. The company says the product will help companies find and engage talent, comply with industry standards and spend resources effectively.

In effect, Intuit Workforce seems to function as a kind of human capital management system that businesses can use to manage their independent workforce. It should be noted that when Intuit refers to compliance, this does not mean worker classification compliance; rather, enabling “companies to integrate with industry-standard tools to run in-depth, compliant background checks, send fast, secure and legally binding e-signatures and create custom tests and training courses for prospective and current workers.”

Intuit Workforce, with its APIs, is also a platform with its own growing ecosystem, described in the press release as follows: “Intuit Workforce partners with a range of companies to deliver an end-to-end experience, including Checkr and Onfido (background checks), Twilio (text messages and phone calls), HelloSign (electronic signatures) and Lesson.ly (custom trackable lessons).”

What’s the Significance?

The press release quotes Alex Chriss, vice president and general manager of Self-Employed Solutions at Intuit, as saying: “This massive growth [in the independent/on-demand workforce] brings new complexity in worker management, payments and tax distribution. QuickBooks Self-Employed and our new Intuit Workforce work together to make it easier for both workers and companies to collaborate, share data and efficiently meet their respective compliance requirements.”

Intuit has clearly been penetrating online freelance and on-demand matching platform businesses. Early this year, it was noted that Quicks Self Employed had channel relationships with Uber, Lyft, TaskRabbit, Fiverr, UpCounsel and HourlyNerd. Intuit also reports in this week’s press release that “since acquiring Playbook HR, Intuit has also added 70 companies, including Luxe, Deliv, OrderUp, Washio, Favor Delivery, Eden and Saucey.” The press release reports “there are almost 200,000 prospective on-demand workers on the Intuit Workforce platform,” presumably engaged by the companies now using the solution.

Spend Matters has been following the steps Intuit has been taking in pursuing the growing market for services provided to independent (on-demand) workers and the businesses that engage them along with the company’s restructuring to focus on cloud-based, as-a-service solutions. The significance of these developments lies in what Spend Matters sees as the emergence of a new digital ecosystem that will intermediate/support work arrangements between businesses and independent workforce. For more on this subject, see our PRO research briefs here and here.

We will be following up with further analysis of Intuit’s developing leadership position in meeting the administrative needs of businesses and workers in the above referenced emerging digital ecosystem as well as continuing our research coverage of the ongoing development of the ecosystem overall.

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