1099 Insights
July 31, 2023

3 Industries Tapping Into the Power of the Gig Economy

The gig economy has revolutionized the way people work and the kinds of jobs they pursue. Already, more than one-third of the American workforce participates in the gig economy, and projections suggest that this number will exceed 50% by 2027. For many people, the appeal of gig work includes flexible scheduling around creative pursuits and family responsibilities, with 4 in 5 gig workers sharing that they are happier than they would be in a traditional job.

As more people embrace the freedom and flexibility that comes with gig work, businesses must be prepared to adapt and evolve to keep pace with rapid gig economy growth. Companies that lean in will be able to tap into a vast pool of talented individuals, gain access to specialized skills, and leverage on-demand resources that enhance overall agility and competitiveness. Here are three industries that have already started capitalizing on the potential of the gig economy.

The emergence of gig work in the healthcare sector

The COVID-19 pandemic placed an immense strain on medical professionals and took a toll on their well-being. Many nurses and caretakers, faced with an unprecedented surge in patients and overwhelming demand for critical care, have turned to short term assignments. Nurses are now finding job opportunities beyond hospitals, including home health care, COVID-19 testing and vaccination centers, and telehealth support. These shorter term gigs have allowed medical professionals to be selective with assignments, set better boundaries, and space out exhausting jobs to prevent burnout. 

Hospitals and other care providers who are open to hiring short-term healthcare workers are seeing a lot of benefits. These advantages include access to top talent, flexible staffing during seasonal peaks, cost savings on salaries and employee benefits, and the ability to provide personalized patient care by hiring specialists when needed. Gig hiring has helped nurse staffing teams to keep pace with employee turnover and stay relevant during a healthcare labor shortage

However, healthcare facilities should also be prepared for related challenges, such as potential increases in onboarding and upfront training costs. Download the Gig Economy Guide for tips on setting up your healthcare business for success. 

The rise of 1099 delivery drivers 

When people think of the rise of the gig economy, delivery drivers are likely one of the first opportunities that come to mind. The advent of Amazon Prime has taught consumers that products can and should be delivered quickly. Same-day delivery service has become the norm rather than the exception. The result has been massive gig economy growth within the last mile delivery services industry. 

For car owners with a valid license, there are tons of opportunities to earn extra income including on-demand food and alcohol delivery, pharmaceutical drop-off, and local courier services. Companies willing to employ gig workers have the flexibility to scale their delivery capacity based on demand fluctuations. They can efficiently navigate peak periods, avoid fixed labor costs, and reduce overhead expenses such as overnight parking. However, companies should also be wary of quality control, and establish clear guidelines, training programs, and monitoring systems to ensure service standards are met. 

One of the most effective ways to retain reliable delivery drivers is to ensure prompt payments. Learn how Branch can help you make instant contractor payments and maintain a competitive edge.

The changing landscape of professional home services

One of the biggest disruptions has been within professional home services. Skilled workers such as plumbers, electricians, and painters who once relied on big companies to schedule their hours can now connect directly with consumers through platforms such as TaskRabbit, Handy, and Thumbtack. The result is that many have become independent contractors and in doing so, become owners of their own small business. These contractors have unlocked the freedom to set their own schedules, pick the projects they want to work on, and establish their own rates. 

The growth of the gig economy within the professional services industry has also elevated the overall quality of services offered. Professionals have a strong incentive to deliver exceptional service to build their reputation and attract more clients. If done right, gig workers can earn significant income for their skilled services. However, there are also pitfalls that independent workers should be wary of. Gig workers may face difficulties in securing a steady stream of clients or effectively managing their business operations. They need to navigate the complexities of self-employment, including marketing their services, handling finances, paying any 1099 subcontractors, and ensuring customer satisfaction. 

Despite these challenges, the gig economy has opened up new opportunities for both professionals and customers in the professional home services realm. It has empowered skilled workers to take control of their careers, provided customers with more options and convenience, and fostered a competitive landscape that drives quality and innovation. As the gig economy continues to evolve, the transformation of professional home services is likely to accelerate, shaping the future of this industry.

Interested in learning how other industries are navigating the future of the gig economy? Download Branch’s free Gig Economy Guide.

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