Technology is undeniably aiding the young in giving wings to this new work culture
The world of work has changed drastically since Covid-19 cemented its foot into our lives. The workforce, too, is on the receiving end of the repercussions as it is witnessing a massive transformation.
However, the question remains- Is this change for good? We will let you decide on that at the end of this article.
Whether or not this change will be beneficial for workers depends on how employees and the business world in general, will perceive it.
As remote working has become a part and parcel of our daily lives, full-time jobs are seeing a sharp steep rise on the graph with gig assignments taking the center-stage. Though the 20th century was called the era that introduced the “jobs for life” concept with secure and stable 9 to 5 roles, the present times are acting as an antithesis to it, thanks to the pandemic.
The world today is submerged in gig activities. Don’t believe us? Right from cloth-ironing to food preparation, delivery to laundry, everything is done by gig workers. Ironically, some of their customers are also gig workers. Time has become a premium element, with no moment to spare and every minute an opportunity to learn and earn. Gig culture fits perfectly within this frame. Millennials and Gen-Xers are recognising this chance and leaping towards it. With the traditional work mindset setting walls against the current work scenario, the gig economy will present itself in a more concrete and structured way in the times to come.
Technology is undeniably aiding the young in giving wings to this new culture and several people today are working for technological elements like apps instead of actual humans. Take Zomato or Uber, for example. The workers here have apps as their bosses. Baffling!
However, technology wasn’t the trigger factor for inducing this change. The situation was. Advancements in technology did not bring the gig economy culture. The pandemic did. Or we can say, the changing mindsets did. Technology provided a shoulder to construct the new work environment in a way that suits everyone. It acted as the perfect jigsaw puzzle piece that helped gig workers fit in and complete the picture.
The gig economy is certainly a riskier approach to work. But this only holds true for the current businesses that were established to hire 9 to 5 workers. The concept of freelancers was limited to projects that couldn’t be done by permanent employees due to XYZ reasons. This implicates the need for a changed business model to suit the gig culture.
It invites new entrepreneurs, new opportunities, and new innovations to encourage independence in the workforce. While remote working was quickly adopted by many firms, several jobs cannot continue their reign in this field, take farming or car manufacturing for example. Office space rentals in India fell drastically in the past 2 years as 2020 saw hundreds of firms shutting down and many others switching online. Metropolitan cities Hyderabad, Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, and Chennai had rented out 32 million sq. ft of office space in 2019’s first half. This dropped to 13.7 million sq. ft in 2020 during the same period.
But this doesn’t push gig culture into oblivion as the market demand for such workers is rising, given the WFH ease, tons of tasks available, and tech-aided opportunities.
Online sales rapidly surged, leaving physical stores out of sight. Even after lockdowns and restrictions eased, the online market might not see a downfall in the demand. Customer service, online tech support, delivery service, taxis, and several others are coming forward as the most in-demand jobs.
Despite Covid-19 eventually fading away sometime in the future, the gig economy is going to get stronger by the trends it is witnessing currently.
The gig economy will not only transform our perspective of looking at work but also compel us to learn the different methodologies of working. Employees' best bet today is to remain in tune with the changing business frames and adapt to them. The gig culture is not just a passing trend but a new permanent work model.
The author is VP Sales, KEKA
DISCLAIMER: Views expressed are the author’s own, and Outlook Money does not necessarily subscribe to them. Outlook Money shall not be responsible for any damage caused to any person/organisation directly or indirectly.