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Bangladesh - July 25, 2023

Bangladesh in risk of AI freelancing

Syed Nasir Hossain: BD Multitech is a Bangladeshi company doing freelancing for four companies in Canada, UK, Hong Kong and Slovakia. Artificial intelligence (AI) is a boon for the indigenous organization. AI technology has made many tasks of the organization easier. Reduced time and effort in work. There is also the opposite picture. AI has reduced the income of many freelancers. Although many have work, the wages have decreased. Some are afraid of losing their jobs again.
BD Multitech Proprietor Mainur Rahman Milki said, AI has made our digital marketing, SEO (Search Engine Optimization), graphic design, logo creation, web development work easier. Apart from this, human resource management and accounting work is being done now. As a result, those organizations have to spend less time and effort in their work.
However, some freelancers have said the opposite about AI. Shihab Hussain, a freelancer, said that he lost his content writing job for AI. Shihab said, I used to work in content writing in an organization in Hong Kong. The company is now writing content entirely with AI. Now they are only editing work we are doing. He said, another company used to pay 15 to 20 dollars for content of 400 words. Now it wants it through AI, offering one-fourth of the bill.
Shihab said, the copy that used to take two to three hours for a copywriter to write, is being written in 10 minutes or less with AI. The written texts can be seen again in detail. As a result, foreign companies are paying less.
Touhidur Rahman, a freelancer from Dhaka, worked in photography and programming. He said, now simple programs can be created with AI. No more programming for small apps, reduced programming.
He also said that earlier there was a lot of work to remove the background of the film. Now they can be done perfectly in two seconds with AI. As there was payment for these works earlier, now there is no more.
That is, artificial intelligence has now brought boons as well as pitfalls to freelancing. Technology experts say that the risk of AI technology is high in freelancing in countries like Bangladesh. Many less educated philanthropists will lose their jobs. Even if there is work again, the income will decrease.
AI is a technology that makes almost all types of freelancing possible. Generative AI like ChatGPT and Bird can now perform many tasks faster and more accurately than humans. Even if the rest of the work is not 100%, it can be completed 100% with the help of another person. One person can do the work of few people.
Now with AI, everything from translation to data entry, customer service, proofreading, copywriting, software development, web development, computer program creation, coding and data analysis, market research, social media research, telemarketing, various technical support analysts, e-mail marketers, moderators can be done very easily.
Bangladeshi freelancers are more dependent on these jobs. Organizations of different countries of the world, including the United States, United Kingdom, and Europe, get these jobs done from outside (outsourcing) because the cost is more if they hire local workers.
According to the data, there are now six and a half lakh freelancers in the country. All of them have an annual income of about 1 billion dollars or Tk 10,600 crore (Tk 106 per dollar). From the year 2005-06 mainly freelancing work started coming in the country. Young people are ahead in this work. Now freelancing is done in more than 150 marketplaces from Bangladesh. Bangladesh ranks second in the world in terms of freelancing.
When asked, IT expert Tanveer Hasan Joha told that freelancing work for AI will not decrease. But the way work is changing drastically, many freelancers can’t keep up with it.
Joha said the unprofessional tasks in freelancing will be taken over by AI. But the number is more in Bangladesh. As a result, the place of professionalism has to keep pace with the changing technology.
Zobair Ahmed, founder and CEO of RedNode Services Limited, said that AI can do small tasks like photoshop, proofreading, copywriting, data entry better than humans. That’s why freelancers are losing these jobs. Therefore, if we cannot adjust with this technology, unemployment will increase.
He said, now minor app development or other programming related work is also being done with AI. Not only that, AI malicious actors are able to easily develop different types of malware. A virus is forming. As a result freelancers also need to update themselves all the time.
Entrepreneurs said, now there are two ways of income in freelancing. An active earning. This is earning by working directly with customers. Another passive or indirect income. It is earning by working from various marketplaces. Passive freelancers are more at risk for AI.

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