In a surprising development, the gig economy is now the primary source of income for most workers in the sector (61%), not just a means of supplementing other income. Traditionally the gig economy has been a convenient way to earn additional money on top of other work, such as delivering parcels outside of normal working hours, but never before a conscious career choice.
Despite employment being perceived as more stable than picking up potentially precarious work in the gig economy, the number of workers who have left or plan to leave jobs to join the gig economy has increased by 40% in the last year. This tells us that either people do not feel that their jobs are as stable that they used to be, that the gig economy is more stable than we perceive it, or that other factors are at play which are more important than stability.
According to the research by Branch, an instant payment platform, workers are drawn to gigging for the potential to earn more money (78%), followed by flexibility (68%), and faster pay (52%). The trend of juggling multiple platforms has continued, with 71% (of the 1000 gig workers surveyed) saying they rely on two or more apps, compared to 60% in 2021.
The gig economy seems to be the prevail of younger workers, with most (61%) being aged 42 or younger, it could simply be that it’s a convenient way to earn money rather than attempting to carve out a ‘traditional’ career path from scratch.
In any case, the evidence suggests that working in the gig economy is increasingly a positive choice for people, and one that is preferred to permanent employment.