Jobs in the rapidly expanding gig economy

  |   Blog

“Gig” workers are those who work on a contingent basis, ie consulting, freelance, temporary, casual. Their numbers have risen dramatically, and continue to do so.

This is the fastest-growing category of new jobs.

It offers seductive benefits to both consumers and workers. For workers advantages include flexibility, independence, freedom to choose when and where to work, ability to develop new skill sets and determine own future career directions. There’s also the opportunity to build up a business or consultancy.

Significantly there are also challenges and downsides for workers. Temporary means what it says: lack of certainty, lack of security, lack of any guarantees, uncertain future. All of this can be very stressful. Banks for example don’t lend money where there is uncertainty about tomorrow.

The gig economy is also erasing years of hard-won worker protections. At the rate gig work is growing, future generations won’t have superannuation, a minimum wage, worker’s compensation, overtime, sick leave, or the right to collectively bargain or join form/join unions.

What it effectively does is allow organisations to circumvent labour laws by describing workers as independent contractors rather than employees.

Why is this happening? Because it’s so profitable for corporations and consumers find it convenient.

According to The Guardian: “Gig workers are about 30% cheaper because companies pay them only when they need them,” and employers don’t have to pay the add-ons like superannuation, sick leave, etc.


Career Planning in the Age of Gig Work

Maybe there is no point in planning for future unknowns!

Well actually career development is more important than ever! And so also are career practitioners.

Just like a mountain climber or a paraglider jumping off into unknowns, preparation is vital when facing the future world of work.

To be prepared for future jobs and the rest of your career you need to:

  • Have good self-knowledge and awareness (eg occupationally relevant interests, strengths, weaknesses, motivation, values, ‘soft skills’, etc). The CAREER ePORTAL can help you with this.
  • Nurture your educational and training opportunities while being open to continual learning.
  • Understand how to make good career decisions, ones soundly based on your own attributes and the world around you. The CAREER ePORTAL can help you with this.
  • Become informed about current and emerging trends.
  • Develop and maintain you career management skills. CAREER ePORTAL can help you with this.
  • Build and protect your reputation. Social media can destroy careers very fast indeed.

Succeeding in changing world of work means becoming a master of your career development, excelling in what you can offer, and constantly enhancing your reputation.

The CAREER ePORTAL helps career seekers to make realistic and suitable career plans, for now and into the future.


Bob Bredemeyer