Businesses and employees are calling on the UK Government to provide more protection for those who work in the gig economy.
A survey of nearly 5,000 workers and over 100 businesses by jobs board totaljobs found 90% of employees and 87% of employers said that more regulations were needed to protect the rights of gig workers.
Some 64% of employers surveyed said they believed the gig economy’s importance would continue to grow in the next year due to an appetite for more flexible working arrangements. Totaljobs says it has seen an annual 24% increase in the number of contract and freelance roles advertised and a 36% rise in candidate applications.
Around 43% of businesses surveyed said they already employ gig workers and almost half of those (45%) who don’t said that they would do so in the future.
Around 35% of gig workers said they did so because of the greater flexibility it offers compared to the traditional nine-to-five; 32% said it was because they couldn’t find full or part-time work; and one in five (22%) said it was to get experience in a different industry.
Around 79% of employers said they employed gig economy workers to offer flexibility to their business; 40% said it was to fill a gap in the team; and over a third (35%) said it was to help them scale their operations up or down.
The survey also showed that 80% of employers said that employees who work flexibly were more productive in the workplace.
Meanwhile, the actors’ union Equity has launched an investigation to find practical solutions to combat sexual harassment and the fear of disclosure in the theatre, film, TV, audio and new media industries.