Excerpt from a recent column in Huffington Post:
Small businesses make up half of the GDP of the U.S. However, the country’s confidence is at historic lows. Adding new hires is risky, regulations are burdensome, and few want to make substantial financial commitments to growth that may never materialize. Across the country, smaller companies have begun to rely increasingly on outsourced labor — not only for the mundane call center and computer programming functions, but also for higher level strategic guidance. The Boston-based HourlyNerd is one such company that is exploiting this trend.
Founded in February of 2013 for a class project by a team of Harvard Business School students, HourlyNerd pairs top-quality MBAs with small businesses to provide, what they describe as “low-priced, flexible consulting, financial and accounting advice by the hour.” Since starting earlier this year they have “seen more than 300 businesses register for their site and have signed up more than 875 MBAs,” according to a statement. Example projects have included (among others) market entry analysis, business plan creations, and financial modeling; the Nerds also say they are on the verge of launching a co-marketing agreement with a top global technology firm. “We delight our customers because we offer them exceptional value. Our ‘Nerds’ cost about $35-50/hour. It’s very difficult to find freelancers for under $100-150, and honestly, the quality cannot compare. And McKinsey and Bain & Co. are obviously way too expensive for these businesses.” says founder and co-CEO Rob Biederman, age 26.
What kind of projects have Nerds done for these businesses? “Honestly, they run the gamut,” says founder and COO Joe Miller, 27. “We’ve helped an Australian manufacturing firm size various Southeast Asian markets…(read more)