Are you ready for the Gig Economy?

With the rise of the gig economy in the new year, there is an increasing need for employers to know how to manage contract and freelance staff.
By: | January 2, 2020

Ready or not, the gig economy is here.

Gone are the days where full-time jobs are the way to go. In fact, the number and average tenure of full-time workers are falling as we speak.

While it’s true that some industries like technology are more suited to the gig economy than others, the digitalisation and specialisation of skills will further increase need for contract/freelance jobs.

“As skills become more specialised, companies either need to invest in reskilling to prepare workers for the jobs of tomorrow or leverage freelance professionals who are nearly twice as likely as traditional employees to proactively take reskilling upon themselves,” said Stephane Kasriel, CEO of Upwork and co-chair of the World Economic Forum’s Council on the Future of Gender, Education and Work.

So here are some tips by recruitment agency Michael Page on managing and preparing for the gig economy:

1. Consider a minimum term of three months

With all the administration, orientation and training involved in onboarding new staff even if they contractors, it does not make sense to give them a contract of less than three months. In fact, the average tenure for short term contracts is six months to a year.

2.  Strengthen your backend team

The adminstrative tasks such as contracts, onboarding and setting up of systems are going to be the most painful part of hiring contract staff. So make sure your backend and admin teams are well trained and prepared to handle the workload.

3. Be aware of regulatory framework

Unlike full-time employees, contract staff and freelances will have a different set of regulations under the labour law in the country. For example, you might want to be sure of the benefits they are entitled to such as insurance, leave etc. This is to prevent any complications or even lawsuits at the end of their contracts.

4. Education is a process

While the gig economy has been slowly but surely becoming a trend over the last few years, it is still a new ball game for many businesses. So it’s important for companies to understand and be educated on the upsides and downsides of the gig economy and how it will impact them. This will help them leverage on the right talents to grow their businesses.