SUBSCRIBE: Newsletter

Human Resources



Are you losing star talent to the gig economy?

Human Resources magazine and the HR Bulletin daily email newsletter:
Asia's only regional HR print and digital media brand.
Register for your FREE subscription now »


The talent market has changed drastically in recent years and that especially means understanding how you can use “the gig economy” in your hiring strategies to indeed win the talent war.

The BBC defines the gig economy as “a labour market characterised by the prevalence of short-term contracts or freelance work, as opposed to permanent jobs.” And these can include a myriad of jobs but more importantly skills your organisation could be missing out on.

In fact, the gig economy is competing for the exact same talent your organisation is. There are many misconceptions about freelancer workers; that they do unskilled work, are young and inexperienced and people only choose to work out of necessity. However, according to Bounty Job’s latest white paper;

  • 91% of contract workers on LinkedIn are in their middle or late careers, while more than one-third of millennials are gig workers.
  • 92% of people over the age of 65 view gig work as a legitimate career option for themselves.

The second myth about freelance workers is that they are often unskilled labour. Yet the Bounty jobs report states that  73% of contractors have higher education degrees, as opposed to 45% of traditional workers in a comparative group. As most contract workers on Linkedin are in the middle or late in their careers indicates that most independent workers only go freelance after developing a certain level of skill.

Furthermore, gig workers exist across all industries and 21% of freelancers provide professional services. A segment of the gig economy that is growing; in 2011, only 4.5 million independent contractors provided professional services. By 2015, that number had reached 6.4 million.

According to the report, there are five top reasons that 54% of gig workers choose flexible work as a way to “pursue their own particular interests,” these include;

  • Flexibility in work and life

20% of workers across generations named this as a driver of their decision to work in the gig economy.

  • Income Potential

A fifth of full-time independent workers earn more than $100,000 a year.

  • Job Satisfaction

74% of full-time independent workers report they are “very satisfied” with their work.

  • Better Health

70% of full-time gig workers surveyed independent work was better for their health.

  • Security

48% of people felt independent work was more secure than traditional employment.

ALSO READ: Hong Kong is at the frontline of gig economy

HR Masterclass Series: High-level HR strategy training workshops
with topics ranging from Analytics, to HR Business Partnering, Coaching, Leadership, Agile Talent and more.
Review the 2020 masterclasses here »

Read More News

in China by

Would you hire a career changer?

38% of recruiters would, especially if career changers give a concise reason for the change, and showcase knowledge of the industr..