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Economic Survey 2021 | Gig economy jobs got a boost due to COVID-19 lockdown

The Economic Survey 2020-21 said the COVID-19 pandemic-induced lockdown saw employers cutting down on staff strength and engaging freelancers or outsourcing tasks to reduce overhead costs.

January 29, 2021 / 03:15 PM IST
The survey said benefit of the gig economy is that it allows flexibility in employer-employee relationship to both service seeker and service provider.

The survey said benefit of the gig economy is that it allows flexibility in employer-employee relationship to both service seeker and service provider.


The Economic Survey 2020-21, tabled in Parliament on January 29, said the gig economy saw a big boost, lead by online retail, due to the COVID-19 pandemic-induced lockdown.

The survey, drafted by Chief Economic Advisor Krishnamurthy Subramanian and his team, said the lockdown period also

saw employers cutting down on staff strength and engaging freelancers or outsourcing tasks to reduce overhead costs.

"With increasing demand in industries for on hire project-specific consultants, logo/content designers, web designers for the white-collar workers, the delivery boys and taxi drivers engaged in platforms like Uber/Ola, Swiggy, Big Basket, Pizza Hut are now showing

potential as well," the survey added.

It said benefit of the gig economy is that it allows flexibility in employer-employee relationship to both service seeker and service provider.

The nature of job contract for a gig worker is different from the contract between an employer and employee/worker.

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Their labour contract is usually shorter and more specific to the task or job assigned. Their employment type might be either temporary or contractual and certainly not regular. The nature of payment against the work is more of piece rate, negotiable, may be as wage or partly as profit/reward than a fixed salary.

The Economic Survey said till recently, gig or platform workers were devoid of their basic rights and social security because they were neither considered as worker nor employee under definition of the employee in the labour laws of the country.

"For the first time, these class of workers have been brought under the ambit of the newly introduced Code on Social Security 2020 by defining them exclusively in the category of unorganized workers for providing social security benefits," the survey added.

Overall, the survey said digital platforms have emerged as enablers for employment creation with the power to easily discover job seekers and job providers in the absence of middlemen.

"Digital technology enables two-sided markets which saw the

emergence of e-commerce and online retailing platforms such as Amazon, Flipkart, Ola, Uber, Urban Clap, Zomato, Swiggy. India has emerged as one of the largest country for flexistaffing in the world," said the survey.

Gig economy refers to employment of workers on a temporary basis for fixed income. The job positions would be dependent on the seasonality of the business.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jan 29, 2021 03:15 pm

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