The gig economy is growing and it is transforming approaches in the workplace. It’s also creating some new challenges. Are organisations thinking about how they can maintain engagement when the nature of the future workforce inevitably means a far higher turnover than ever before? After all, it’s likely that it could become increasingly difficult for employees and managers to build relationships, team ethics and stronger cultures with so many giggers entering then leaving the workforce.
The gig economy’s been slowly evolving over the past two to three decades as increasing numbers of these kinds of workers entered the workplace. Up until now they went by other names: contractors, interim managers, freelancers, independent professionals, temporary contract workers, independent contractors, consultants. A combination of factors – the rise of technology, customers expecting goods and services to arrive quickly and flexibly, the global recession, workers seeking work opportunities that offer greater flexibility and variety – has led to its acceleration.
Traditionally gig workers have been a section of workforce that’s been ignored when it comes to employee recognition. That’s fair enough – they’re not employees after all. Despite some HR professionals recognising the fact that it could be a beneficial thing to do, it has also just been too difficult and complex to justify the effort. Obstacles like tax implications and putting giggers into HR systems that weren’t set up for non-permanent labour meant it was a challenge that ended up being put in the ‘too difficult’ basket. Until now, that is.
Read my thoughts on recognising giggers here and make sure you share your views in the comments below.