Gig Economy: It’s About Flexibility

The ‘USP’ of gig economy is flexibility; flexi-hiring for the employers and flexi-working for the employees.  Amid red flagging on social security front, gig economy booms and accounts for nearly 56% of the current new employment generation in India. The number could scale up further.  Gig economy gains importance as it is tagged as a major building block in bridging the income and unemployment gap in India’s 5 trillion economy march.


Tina Brown, the former New Yorker editor has coined the term “Gig Economy” in 2009, which discussed the way employees in knowledge economy pursue “a group of unrestricted moving projects, consultancies, and part-time jobs while transacting in a digital marketplace.”  Gig Economy is the budding economic model where employees are hired on a part-time flexible basis rather than for full-time.

How it works?

Employees in gig economy characteristically interact with the end-users through online platforms like:

  • The drivers engaged with cab-hailing platforms (E.g. Uber, Ola).
  • Delivery partners engaged with restaurant aggregators (E.g. Zomato, Swiggy).
  • Adjunct faculty servicing e-learning platforms (E.g. ICFAI, BYJUs)

Present Scenario in India

The possibility of gig work has been regularly growing ever since companies start to hire employees on a part-time / on a gig basis. In India, there is no defined regulatory framework to legalize the gig economy, therefore, e-commerce companies are engaging the workforce on short term contracts. According to NITI Ayog Report, 2020-21, India’s gig workforce stood at 77 lakh. It is expected to grow to 2.35 crore by 2029-30, and gig workers would constitute 4.1% of India’s total workforce, rising from 1.5% in 2020-21.

Challenges of Gig Economy in India

Gig Economy dwells on informal working space while creating jobs.  The major challenges for the workforce are:

  • Lack of job security, social security and irregular wages.
  • Uncertainty of work availability.
  • Pressure due to algorithmic ratings and management practises.
  • Demand supply mismatch.
  • Prior skilling on own efforts needed (No training and development by employers)

Employers’ Dilemma

Employers are confused in identifying the kind of jobs that can be gigified. In fact, many of the roles can be gigified, but for, the understanding to gigify in the low, mid, and high skill segments. For instance, jobs within vital business functions such as last-mile operations, due diligence, auditing in low-skill gig work, customer excellence, merchant on-boarding, etc., can be gigified. 

Exploitation of Gig Workers

In order to make their jobs viable, majority of the gig employees need to put in long hours of work. The advantage of ‘flexible work’ in gig economy is lost due to coercion of employees into incentive system, with nil transparency on incentive system.

Future of Gig Economy in India

Gig work certainly would increase in India due to the technological possibilities in numerous sectors. Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS), National Service Scheme (NSS), must unearth information to identify gig workers that encompass details on the nature of contract between employee and job creator, use of technology in work, etc.


Covid-19 has redesigned the nature of employment in the gigification of work in various sectors in India.  The gig economy enables to transact over $250 billion in volume of work and contribute 1.25 percent to India’s GDP in the long run. Thus, businesses may shift owing to the prospects of the direct and indirect cost savings the gig model seems to offer. 

Learners’ Opportunity     

Under gig economy, unless a person has the required skill, his/her bargaining power gets limited. ICFAI Online MBA helps you acquire the management skills, even when you continue to work. For more details check our program @

Discussion Question      

What is your wish list? Gig job or regular employment? Why?

What emerging strategies may work for the gig economy to support the rights of gig workers while protecting the interests of the Organizations?

 Key Words

#onlinembainindia #onlinembaprogram #icfaimba #icfaionlinemba #onlinemba #onlinembadegree #mbadegreeonline #onlinembacourse

Source Article

1.Gurpreet Singh-Gig economy: The possibility of building …-Forbes India newsletter, Jul 27, 2022                         

2. Niti Ayog- India’s Booming Gig and Platform Economy -NITI Ayog Research team-June 2022                    

3. National Conference on Gig Economy- Assocham-January 24, 2020

4. HBR Newsletter- Will the pandemic push…..       

5. Forum IAS Blog – Gig Economy in India… June 30th, 2022                                                                                                                                                                                                                       


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