As per a latest report by the Indian Staffing Federation (ISF), the share of formal flexi-jobs in the e-commerce sector has grown from 77 percent in 2015 to 91 percent in 2018.
The highest among all sectors, the formal flexi-workforce formed 91 percent of the total workforce in the e-commerce sector and stood at 1.15 million.
The shift from informal to formal sector has been observed in other sectors as well. For instance, in three years formal flexi-staff grew by 11 percent in manufacturing, in government by 10 percent, and in education by 7 percent. Currently, in the education sector 70 percent of its total workforce being formal at 11.75 million.
The report suggests that this increase in formal flexi-workforce has been trigerred by reforms like the GST and demonetisation. Further, there is a huge shift in mindset and how people are approaching work today. Newer business models, particularly in e-commerce are more welcoming to the concepts of flexi-work.
Besides increase in formal flexi-workforce, the sector is also doing well in terms of gender diversity. Particularly in the delivery industry, a new trend has hit. In one year, women workforce in the delivery industry has doubled to more than 40,000, and this uptrend is likely to continue. The hiring of women would go up to 20-26 percent of the total delivery jobs by 2021
Overall, the future looks bright for the e-commerce sector and for employees working in the sector as ISF predicts a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 54 per cent between 2018 and 2021 in flexi-workforce. Reports by PwC and NASSCOM also confirm this growth in the sector. The pegged market size of $35 Bn is expected to grow at 25 percent in the next five years to exceed $100 Bn by 2022, with a potential to create over one million jobs by 2023.
While on one hand the report shows a bright future for the e-commerce sector and brings in positive news for the job seekers, the e-commerce sector is the one sector which can also bear the affects of automation. Especially the delivery roles may soon be taken by drones. Although such automation and development might take time to come to India, but once these solutions get adopted by the economy the jobs shall get affected.
Let's wait and watch how the future in reality turns out to be for the sector. Meanwhile, from businesses to candidates everyone should continuously assess how the world is changing around them and prepare themselves for the future disruptions that might affect them.