Millions of people around the world would like to know what the future holds, track the global changes, and get the most out of that knowledge. We are convinced that to truly understand what the future holds for the industry, you have to look to the past.
In the last 10 years, we have experienced a kind of peaceful revolution in the labor market. The exponential growth of Internet speeds as well as the emergence of apps such as Uber, Upwork, and Fiverr have completely changed the usual way of working.
The idea of “Being Your Own Boss” captured the minds. People have really enjoyed working as much as they want, whenever and wherever it is convenient for them.
The COVID pandemic only intensified this effect and encouraged even the most die-hard fans of traditional office work to work remotely. Not everyone has noticed, but the revolution has already taken place, and a new economy called the “Gig Economy” has been born out of it.
Investopedia says the gig economy prefers temporary, flexible work. This is a common practice, and companies tend to hire independent contractors and freelancers instead of full-time employees. The gig economy is a game-changer in the industry, and it chooses free experts over traditional full-time workers, who are often focused on routine, and don’t solve the employer’s problems effectively.
A gig is a unit of service, content, or product that is produced by a freelancer at a certain rate for a certain amount of time.
The key points of the Gig Economy are:
- One-time payments: pay per trip, per session, per task… per gig.
- Freelancers usually connect with clients or customers through online platforms
- Gigs are made “on demand”
- Narrow and commoditized services are offered
The King is Dead
But over time, people began to realize that there are thousands of freelancers with similar skills. Here comes the problem of getting a steady, stable income, just as there is a problem with regular orders. Prices go down in the struggle for customers, and it becomes a downward spiral. Since prices are constantly dropping, people have to take more gigs to get their usual fee.
And now you’re no longer “Your Own Boss”, because you get a gig request on demand and have to handle it as soon as possible at the lowest rate in order to remain competitive.
As a result, the only guys who benefit from this situation are the large organizations. They get the best deal: low prices, tight deadlines, and a huge number of freelancers to choose from.
Besides, consider the global trend toward automation and all those self-driving cars and other “human substitutes”.
AI can code and develop apps, machines can deliver food and other goods. Robots are handling orders instead of people. This is the end of the Gig Economy. What awaits us next?