The gig economy and the spread of digital labor-sharing platforms — such as Uber, TaskRabbit, and Upwork — are often perceived as fast-growing threats to employment stability and labor rights that promote low-grade, low-paid jobs. Research by the BCG Henderson Institute offers a more nuanced view, including significant opportunities for workers and companies alike to benefit.
A wave of new freelancers who value gig work
The research, including worker and executive surveys, focused on a rising wave of workers we call the new freelancers — that is, those who find work through digital gig platforms. Many of them said the platforms fulfil goals and needs beyond compensation — including more meaningful work and greater autonomy and flexibility.
A new source of skills for companies in an emerging ecosystem
For companies, the research found, gig platforms increase access to new, high-tech skills and sorely needed workers who are difficult to source through traditional labor markets. More broadly, gig work is just one element of an emerging ecosystem of other forms of work and support services that is profoundly changing the way companies hire, train, reward, and manage employees.