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Growing trends in the Gig Economy


Call it independent contracting, freelancing the gig economy or freelance economy, regardless of your preference it’s here to stay.

Contingent workers find more flexibility and variety than traditional workers but are up against much more competitive workforce. From writing to ride sharing, freelancing has reached everywhere. For gig workers, it means an array of possibilities but what does that really mean?

As a freelancer, you have to develop your skills, work with various clients and have the discipline to be your own boss.

The advent of online marketing and the ease of access to laptops, smartphones, and high-speed internet has spurred the growth of the freelance economy. Because online jobs can be done from virtually anywhere, including your own home, it offers ease and convenience.

The continued growth of the gig economy has allowed for freelance workers to be utilized in many fields from tech startups to hospitals. As more employers are becoming more confident in the hiring of contingent workers many are opting for freelancing.

Although working in the gig economy has its pros and cons. One of the main reasons its flourishing is because clients can hire niche workers, workers with specific skills for tasks as needed. On-demand nature of this work allows clients to post their requirements. They can get resources with matching skill-sets easily.

The gig economy encourages that freelancers are hired for specific jobs which benefit both specialized workers and clients. Because clients only have to hire for the job at hand which saves money and time and freelancers gain an advantage with certain skill sets. There are several online job platforms that capitalize on this, they’re convenient meeting points for freelancers and customers which man make the process of hiring even easier. All of these factors have lead to our current workplace revolution.


Here are a few gig economy trends we can expect to see more of in the coming years:


  1. Talent matching platforms:


Talent matching platforms are the newest means to gain freelance work. As freelancers have to hunt for assignments on a regular basis, these platforms work to bring clients and freelancers together. Via online apps, classifieds, and advertisements it’s easier than ever for freelancers to find work.

Moreover, companies such as Contently and HourlyNerd provide platforms for connection between freelancers and companies.  Gig economy workers can post their skills and respond to requirements from clients. It poses as a win-win situation for both parties in the long run. As a freelancer, you can introduce yourself to the client world. While, as a client you can hunt for the best talent in the industry.


  1. Gig Economy Co-working spaces


Sometimes working from home can get a little lonely. Also working from a coffee shop is convenient but you may be more productive with the ambiance of a workplace. Because of these factors, co-working spaces are on the rise. Simply, they are locations that allow freelancers to share workspaces. They offer the ambiance of an office with several perks such as coffee, printers, and wifi. For example, WeWork has 114 office locations in 34 cities across the globe with newer ideas of expansion in the pipeline.


  1. Involvement of larger companies


Many larger companies that have relied on full-time workers are now moving towards freelancers. Instead of hiring full-time employees, these companies are focusing on working with top talent. Recruitment of freelancers allows them to get the best talent in the industry on a temporary basis.

Depending on the nature of the project, larger companies hire independent contractors with specialized skill sets. It provides them the benefit of hiring the best workers without any major commitments. Additionally, they avoid the hassles of long-term financial benefits to employees. Because they are free from obligations such as insurance, education, childcare or health aids, companies can invest their capital towards other causes.

Freelancing revolves around the workers instead of organizations. By offering freedom and flexibility to their workforce, several large size companies are now focusing on the advantages associated with the gig economy.


  1. Growth of start-ups

    Mans hand drawing Startup concept on white notebook

Besides larger companies, startups may have been the first to benefit from working with freelancers. Because they suffer from limited budgets and resources they rely on freelancers to filling the gaps. Temporary workforce allows them to try various factors and methods before deciding on a fixed game plan. They can evaluate strategies and methodologies with contingent workers before making permanent plans in the future.


  1. Nano-degrees and Nano-jobs

The advent of online courses, training platforms and skill development platforms have made it easier than ever for individual to learn and develop their skills. Instead of specialization in one area, the new generation can diversify. The gig economy rewards both specialization and freelancers who are adept at a variety of task. Freelancers can learn new skills required for a single project on the fly and there are more avenues than ever to find the information you need to complete a task. This temporary nature of freelancing has given rise to nano degrees or Nano-jobs for the latest generation of today.


  1. Development of Freelance Management Systems (FMS)

Relying on freelancers increases the need for freelance management systems. As companies hire more freelancer they have to become more adept at handling their freelance workforce. FMS allow them to track projects, deadlines, and payments. With the expansion of the freelance workforce, the need for FMS has increased greatly. Integrated systems that allow companies to manage their temporary workforces will only become more prominent.


These are just a few of the ways the gig economy is shifting the way in which we get work done. Freelancers are trailblazers forging a way to a future that may consist of all workers being contingent. Regardless, the gig economy is growing and that could mean a bright future for those with the skills and wherewithal to spearhead this workforce revolution.



Image sources: blog.peopleperhour.com, businessnewsdaily.com, builtinla.com, fastcompany.com, astonmedia.com, cio.com


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