The rise of the gig economy is a global phenomenon. It has been further amped by the increased use of technology, customers who expect goods and services to arrive faster and employees who seek more flexible than ever before.
While on the one hand, companies need highly skilled professionals for short-term projects to drive innovation and rapid change, workers are looking for work opportunities that offer greater flexibility and variety. This rising trend in the infusion of gig workers has multiple benefits both for organizations as well as employees. Largely, gig work is more cost-effective for businesses, at the same time enables flexibility and freedom of choice for employees.
Sharing his experiences about managing the gig workers and how difficult it was to implement learning and development plans for them, Vivek Mehrotra, Head Learning & Development, Zomato shared that “Gig is not going to be the future, it already is.”
The industry veteran highlighted that currently, India contributes 40% of the freelance jobs globally. While 15 million skilled professionals are working today as gig workers, the number will go to 25 million.
Mehrotra pointed out that many of the gig workers in Zomato earn more than 80 thousand per month, which is higher than many traditional employees, but we still consider them as ‘Blue-collar,' which is not adequate.
Blue-collar workers are always on ground zero, and the companies can convert their performance into tangible business results. He concluded by saying, “The bottom line is L&D to be a service that business consumes with ease and creates impact.”
On the other hand, gig workers are often portrayed as overworked, under-compensated. However, there is a whole new breed of workers who are revolutionizing the gig economy. Meet content creators and social influencers who are transforming the world of marketing and advertisement.
Within influencer marketing, a brand pays a person with a large following or expertise in one area to talk up the virtues of their brand. Harnessing and cultivating creative talents of people with significant followings on social media (which is normally over 50K) is an idea that makes intuitive sense for the brands as they're not looking at people with millions of followers, so there's a broader range of diversity within the pool.
The speaker was sharing his views about the current state of gig workers and gig economy during the People Matters Learning & Development Conference 2019.