AI is Fueling the Rise of Gig Economy

Rajan Sarma
Rajan Sarma

The term Gig economy is referred to as the total number of people who are working for themselves as freelancers for a varied range of clients. Rapid advancements in AI driven technology especially in the last decade or so onwards has given people with ample opportunity and flexibility to choose their working hours and location. This change in working practices has facilitated the growth of online market places which have linked up freelancers with clients who are looking for specific knowledge and expertise.

Online marketplaces allow freelancers to upload their portfolios of work, skills and recommendations from former clients in online freelancing sites. Free lancers build a profile, while the businesses look for the skills and expertise they require and contact the desired freelancers accordingly.

Benefits for both Businesses and Freelancers:
The application of AI driven technology in the Gig economy has proven to be a win win situation for both businesses, and also for the freelancers. This waysignificant savings can be made by the businesses in terms of time and money. There is no need for businesses to worry about conducting in person interviews and lowers significant cost of recruitment as the freelancers work from a remote location. This method of employment is particularly useful for the SME's that most of the time do not have the financial resources to hire the best talent.

Gig economy has totally revolutionized the way people are working, as there is greater autonomy in the projects taken upon, better work life balance as there is flexibility in working hours ability to address issues such as job satisfaction or dissatisfaction whichever may be the case. A
traditional nine to five job which is still the norm and is very much prevalent is slowly but steadily declining. Working practices are changing in favor of Gig economy. Four main types of workers can be observed in the Gig economy they are:-
•Those who actively chose to do freelancing and it is their main source of income.
•People in full time employment engaged as freelancers to get additional income.
•Self employed who reluctantly earn money over freelancing
•Those who feel they have no alternative other than doing freelancing at home. For instance some people are required to take care of old members in their home.

The AI and the Gig Economy:
Freelancing was once only associated with creative arts work such as Graphic Designing, Computer Pro-gramming or related IT works generally being carried out in contracts, Video editing among many other such creative work. When it comes to screening gig talent, A.I can aggregate data using various parameters to create shortlists of qualified candidates and suggest better hires based on previously set expectations. With the rise of AI driven online market places a change has taken place as more and more jobs are being done by freelancers such as Content writing, Editing and Proofreading services, Consultancy work, Marketing and Sales related jobs, Freelance Telemarketing to name a few. For instance online freelancing site Upwork provides a plethora of freelancing activities from content editing, graphic designing to video editing for millions of registered freelancers by linking them with clients around the globe. According to a re-port published by the Forbes magazine there are around 16 million people working in the Gig economy at present. According to a report published by BBC News named "PWC" the global online market place that fuels the Gig economy is estimated to be around 43 billion USD. For instance UK based company, People Per Hour, recorded an increase of 64 percent in the increase of freelancers from 2012 and 2015 alone.

Fueled by demands of flexibility at work, reduced cost of employment and access to specific expertise, the growth in the Gig economy is unlikely to stall as it is providing solutions to both side of the hiring equation.

Quick Facts:
•Technological advancements are directly or indirectly influencing the growth of gig economy, especially Artificial Intelligence wherein companies today have realized the potential of this technology and are employing its usage in the operations.
•With the application of this modernday technology, the hiring and recruitment process has become easier and more efficient along with a flexible work culture.
•Companies nowadays are rendering the use of AI technology in order to allocate work more efficiently and keep track of the work being done by them.