“It’s an incredibly exciting time to be in the human capital space, and it’s an exciting time to be innovating,” says Samuel Bright, chief product and experience officer at Upwork, the world’s largest B2B talent platform.
Bright and his distributed team of 900 people across 45 countries look after everything customers touch when on the platform.
Part of his work has entailed unifying the product experience at Upwork. He has also been turning customer feedback into product improvements — 40% of Upwork’s product and feature releases last year were influenced by the company’s voice of the customer program.
“It means we’re ingesting customer insights and then using them to guide what we build,” Bright says.
That work has improved Upwork’s gross services volume, which rose 41% in 2021. GSV includes client spend and additional fees for other services. Growth continued, and Upwork’s GSV reached $1 billion in the first quarter of 2022 alone.
Bright was a customer of Upwork before joining the company in late 2020. His past experience included eBay; his roles there included VP and general manager of verticals. In addition to Upwork, Bright serves on the board of the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America (TIAA) and on the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum Advisory Council.
“The work landscape is evolving so rapidly on both the client and talent side,” Bright says. “Our plans are for Upwork to be in a leading position, to anticipate and drive many of those changes going forward.”