Gig & Other Alternative Work Solutions In The News

By Brett Frazer posted 10-22-2019 09:45 AM


Over the past couple of weeks, while I have been conducting the Gig interviews, there have been some very interesting articles in the news and research papers about the future of work. While I included the announcement of Uber Works in my blog on Postmates, as it was directly relevant, I have been storing up these articles that I am sharing this week.

Some of this is very relevant to @Brandon Linton's question about remote worker programs. I would strongly suggest you invest 30 mins in these articles even if you are not considering gig workers yet, but just want to learn some insights on how to better manage your existing workforce.

First: Rejecting the 40 hour work week Proving that the trend of looking for alternative and flexible work-life balance is not just a US phenomenon, this is an interesting article from my home, New Zealand, details reasons why workers of all ages are taking a different approach to the traditional 9-5 mentality.

Second: The difference between working from home and remote working A short but important article from on the distinct difference for remote workers than the occasional work from home, and why it is necessary to provide the right tools, expectations, and connections for your remote workers to be effective.

Third: Everything you know about the gig economy is about to change A Forbes article on how a new player in the Gig space, AnyTask, is attempting to globally democratize gig work through addressing the issue of the nearly 1.7 billion unbanked people thus far left out by the problem of being able to easily receive payment for their work.   

And lastly: A Combination of both #Artificial Intelligence and #GigEconomy insights from a report from Pega and Marketforce aptly titled "The Future of Work". (See attached PDF.)

On the AI side, and in relation to a topic of conversation at CRS Denver, one quote I found interesting was:

"Some jobs require emotional intelligence, nuanced judgment and cultural understanding that smart machines just can't replace. So, while 70 percent of our respondents expect artificial intelligence to principally replace human workers in administrative roles within a 20-year time frame, a much smaller proportion, 41 percent, expect the same fate for human workers in customer-facing roles."  (Pg 8)

I believe many of us would agree that the complex and personalized questions that many of our customers pose to our organizations fit into the description of requiring emotional intelligence, nuanced judgment, and cultural understanding.

From a Gig perspective, the perceived acceleration of the adoption of gig talent from this research even surprised me.

"The gig economy could reinvent the call center, however, replacing long shifts with flexible working patterns from the comfort of one's own home. Almost nine out of ten of our respondents (88 percent) think that within 10 years large-scale permanent call centers will have been largely replaced with flexible freelancers working remotely. Indeed, more than half, 55 percent, expect this change to happen within the next five years." (Pg 17)

With this change, however, comes challenges and opportunities for these current contact center companies to adapt their focus from labor arbitrage to technology that helps to support these new gig workers (See details on Pg 18 & 19)

Another cited outcome of this migration to this new talent model is moving away from fixed to dynamic pay rates for work depending on supply and demand, a-la- Uber surge pricing (Also on pgs 18 & 19).

That's it for another week from me.

Next week's update will be a little closer to home, as I share insight to a new channel of utilizing Gig workers at Sun Basket.​​​​​​