Gig economy amidst Covid-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the society, polity, economy and human psychology worldwide. The traditional way of living and daily routine of human has changed drastically. The concept of work from home is accepted widely. The novel coronavirus has reduced the heterogeneity among the gig workers and the regular employees working with employee benefits and other securities. This reduced heterogeneity can be better explained by introducing the concept of the gig economy.

The gig economy is basically composed of gig work and gig workers. Gig work is a type of temporary contract work where the self-employed workers get connected with the clients via a digital platform. The gig workers are classified into crowd workers and work on-demand workers. The crowd workers complete and deliver their tasks online and are location independent whereas the work on-demand workers complete and deliver their tasks offline and are location-dependent but with location flexibility. The gig economy has its own pros and corns and these two sides of this economy have an interesting impact during the lockdown period.

Work from home is a major characteristic of the crowd workers and now it is a new normal for the regular employees. Various private companies, PSUs and government sector organisations and NGOs have adopted the concept of work from home. During this period of Covid-19, work from home is the only option for the companies to survive and save them from shutting down with huge loss except for the companies where the physical presence of workers is mandatory like the manufacturing sector (manufacturing sector has suffered the most due to lockdown). The new culture of work from home offers flexible working condition, it is time-saving, enhances savings of the employees and profit of the firm by reducing operational cost like electricity bill of the workplace, travel cost to the offices and many such things that becomes a huge cost commutatively.

On the other hand, it leads to lack of concentration while working, increased work hours, excess work pressure, unhealthy routine and lack of ethics and codes of conduct that is important for any organisation’s long term growth. Whereas, the work on-demand workers especially the delivery boys are playing one of the most important and essential roles during this pandemic.

Let us think about the Covid-19 pandemic without the concept of the gig economy. If we do not have the digital platforms which allow us to earn as well as spend then what will be the situation. Think the lockdown without the delivery of boys. Hence, it is not wrong to say that Covid-19 has given a new identity to the gig economy and a newer path to the workers and companies to operate their work. Work from home may become a new culture after the end of this pandemic.

Juhi Singh
Department of Economic Studies and Policy
Central University of South Bihar

2 thoughts on “Gig economy amidst Covid-19

  • July 24, 2020 at 5:27 PM

    Aptly said…..we really need to strengthen our digital platform much more to deal with this type of unforeseen circumstances crisis…

  • July 25, 2020 at 3:25 AM

    Keep it up 👍👌


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