Economy And Its Impact On Labours Essay

Question:

How has the Changing Nature of work and/or Labour Markets Impacted on the lives of Workers?

Answer:

Introduction

The changing nature of work has produced evident impacts on the labours. The worldwide labours have somehow come to a common platform in notable cases. The changing nature of work has emerged in the market because of various reasons such as the desire to work independently with less or no supervision whatsoever, desire to have flexible job timings, desire to earn more and a work life balance are some of those (Muzio, Brock and Suddaby 2013). One of the most common forms of such change work nature is the working through apps either as a freelancer or as a part timer. Such kind of work nature has made things easier and enjoyable both. Gig economy is one of those change work nature, which has influenced a notable numbers of professionals towards it. Gig workplace means either working at home through related apps or working as a part timer (Friedman 2014). To understand the ongoing urgency, the learner has selected TreeBox Solutions in Singapore, which provides solutions to various mobile related issues. The main purpose of this assignment is to understand the impact of changing work nature and the labour market in Singapore.

Literature review

Defining work nature

Work nature can be defined as a process through which people work on a particular given task. Either this can be through being physically at the workplace or being present on some company supported apps. The work nature has been transformed greatly from just being the physical kinds of work to the online work. The contemporary workplace does not see only those who work as a full timer with a particular company. It rather produces such a workplace that has part timers and freelancers working together with the full timers but on a different note. Part timers are those who work on a contractual basis. They work in the company as a part timer, who are assigned with similar task as that of the full timers but for a different time span. Part timers work for fewer hours and they also get less payment than the full timers. On the other hand, working at home through some apps has different working nature than the part timers and the full timers. Online employees or specifically the freelancers work through some apps and select the task according to their wish. The wisdom of selecting the jobs of their choice has facilitated the resource of enjoyment for them as well. They do according to their needs (Brinkley 2016). However, the biggest problem for such nature of work is the consistency to work on a regular basis. In such kind of work nature, professionals feel themselves as independent. This is probably one reason that prevents them from being consistent with their works. They do not feel pressure of working as per the needs of the organisations. On contrary to this, employees working either as a part timer or as full timer in such organisation are bound to work in fixed schedules. Moreover, they are in regular surveillance of their supervisors. They are bound to work according to the instructions of the management. On the other hand, freelancers do not have any supervision on them. They do not have any fixed working schedules as well. Such freedom hampers their determination. They can work equally well to those working in the organisation; however, they are found less committed with the timings and the consistency. Nevertheless, this is not a very healthy sign for a long sustained work as a freelancer (Kalleberg and Dunn 2016).

Sustainability

Sustainability has become one of the most talked topics across the globe. This has not only influenced the labours but it has also influenced the different small and multinational organisations. Organisations have their own issue for which they are struggling to attain the sustainability. However, on the other hand, labours have different set of challenges ahead of them, which has challenged their sustenance with the current job. Those who work as a full timer in organisations have to face several such organisational rules and policies, which are not according to their thought process. In such circumstances, people with solid determination continue with the job. However, those who do not have any strong determination tend to struggle with their job. They look for their kind of jobs, which means they are not settled with the existing jobs. In this regards, Millennial can be viewed as such labours who are in a continuing search of a job of their kind (Winnard et al. 2014).

Freelancers on the other hand have also challenges ahead of them to attain sustainability with their kind of work. They are very selective as they choose task according to their desire and needs. The selectiveness in them compels them for being off the track for a notable time span. They lacks in consistency, which is problematic in the way of sustainability (Kotrba et al. 2012). Another identified issue with such nature of work is the quality of work, which can be on a lower side than the work quality at the organisational level. This can be because of various reasons such as lack of concentration while doing the task. This can also be because no one had supervised the work (Shields et al. 2015). Additionally, teamwork is also missing in such working environment, which is very necessary for knowledge sharing. Nevertheless, supervision and knowledge sharing are two very important factors that produce a significant supportive hand to a particular task. Lack of supportive environment and a lack of consistency in freelancers are two most potential challenges for sustainability (Gallie et al. 2012).

Strengths of gig-economy

Gig-economy provides solution to work pressure, which is strongly absent in the traditional work nature. It offers the selection of task, which is hardly the case with the traditional work nature. It offers an independent working environment where employees would have no supervision at all. It is highly flexible where freelancers can work according to their availability. They can also avail leaves when it is required. Interestingly, this would not require any application sending to the company’s HRM. It is providing solution to the highly incrementing demands for freelancers in nowadays (Mulcahy 2016).

Weaknesses of gig-economy

It discourages a consistent work, which can be threatening for sustenance. Freelancers are not treated as an integral part of organisation although they are doing the same task as done by those in the organisation. They are being paid but are not given an equal importance. Freelancing jobs lack consistency, which is less certain with traditional form of jobs. It indeed provides a good platform to earn; however, it is difficult to perform consistently well in such working platform (Burtch, Carnahan and Greenwood 2016).

Affect on the lives of workers

The contemporary nature of work has affected a significant population with its sheer effect. The gig-working style has influenced the workers in numerous ways. They have now attained flexible job timings, which is rarest possible with the traditional job style. Flexibility has grown on popularity in the contemporary world. Employees now have high passion for flexible shift timings, which could provide them work life balance. Very few companies in this regard have so far shown some resilience. IBM is one of those companies, which offers work life balance to its employees. However, very few companies have shown resilience in that regard. Options are ample to gig-workers. There are very less barrier to entry. On the other hand, it offers numerous opportunities to the freelancers. They now have unlimited options of jobs, which they can hire by inhibiting different job related skills. This has become possible because such jobs do not require any interview given to the interviewee. It just requires the possession of different skills and delivering the possessed skills at the right spot. Safety is another important asset, which the gig-workplace provides to its gig-workers. Gig-workers can now sit and relax safely at their home and deliver the required task using the dedicated apps. They are not required to go to the office and do extensive physical works (Donovan, Bradley and Shimabukuru 2016).

The gig-economy has posed ample of challenges to the gig-workers as well. Inconsistent income is one of the commonest challenges that they have in the gig-economy. Low barriers to entry are one of the potential factors behind the fact. People can anytime enter to the network and replace the existing worker. This can happen because a low rated freelancer might not get consistent projects to his or her credit. Some other might get the opportunity. Competition is very high in gig-economy, which has made things challenging for the workers. To sustain the flow of projects, they need to be highly efficient with the projects. They are required to deliver the projects with utmost quality. Threat of not getting ample projects might hinder gig-workers from a consistent earning. Job security is less in gig-economy although ample of projects is there on the various freelancing sites. Once a gig-worker looses a contract, this would be difficult for him or her to get another better option in quick time. There would be a significant gap, which would also affect the net take home amount (Kenney and Zysman 2015).

Data analysis

To get more information on the chosen task, the learner has selected a Singaporean Company TreeBox Solutions. The company is specialised in providing mobile security solutions. It offers solutions in two forms such as OnTalk and OnTalk Vault. It covers solutions such as securing the real time list of contacts, voice calls, SMS, instant messaging, media files etc. Eight random employees had been selected from the company for the scheduled interview. Each of the respondents has more or less similar thoughts regarding the gig-workplace. They replied according to their knowledge; however, their answers are very much in line with the literature review. Three respondents have supported the gig-workplace; however, they have also highlighted that inconsistent income is a threat in such working culture. Two other respondents have said that job security is less there in the gig-economy. However, they have also not denied the importance of gig-workplace. Job security was perhaps the one factor that has discouraged them from participating in the gig-economy. Rest three respondents have said that gig-economy is a good resource to flexible work, which is rarely available with the traditional format of working. However, they are also frightened of inconsistent income and job security.

Findings

Eight respondents were chosen on a random basis from TreeBox Solutions Company in Singapore. All the respondents came with little or more different responses; however, on a whole, they all supported the gig-economy. On the other hand, they have also shown concerns for the negatives, which are accustomed with the gig-workplace (Pinsof 2015). Interview has helped the learner to reach to a conclusion on the chosen subject topic. All the responses were in the line of the elements that were covered in the literature review section. It was found that gig-economy is the demand of Millennial, which supplies them ample of opportunities that they need. The flexibility in the gig-working nature has been found as the one point that is more fascinating to the respondents. This is something, which has missed in big time in the traditional working format. Flexibility is the rarest thing, which is seldom to the traditional workplace. Millennial in particular has high passion for work life balance. They have many other things, which are important to them. Millennial have their tendency to search for better option until a certain time span, which is why freelancing jobs appear fascinating to them (De Stefano 2015). The freedom to work on their own is another point, which the respondents had supported during the interview. This is hardly possible with the traditional work place. In the traditional organisations, employees are needed to perform the task according to the instructions from the supervisors. In other words, they are needed to work under strict surveillance of management. On contrary to this, gig-workers have independent life where they can make decisions of their own. In such workplace, they supervise their works (Chen and Sheldon 2016). Varied range of options was found as another reason, which excites their feelings for the gig-economy. In traditional organisations, it is indeed difficult to shuffle between different kinds of skills. It usually involves a thorough process before it happens. On contrary to this, gig-workers have varied range of jobs available to them where they can easily shuffle with different jobs by inhibiting a different set of skills. They rather just require possessing and learning different skills, which would provide them earning varied ways of earning (Dokko, Mumford and Schanzenbach 2015).

Despite the benefits that the gig-economy provides to the Millennial, it also has some disadvantages that frighten the Millennial. All the respondents have supported that inconsistent earning is a big threat to the gig-workers (Rogers 2016). They have believed that low barrier to entry is the cause behind a higher risk of losing the project (Sundararajan 2016). This is accustomed with less sustenance of jobs. Bad ratings for a freelancer can keep him or her away from projects. This is also threatening because clients prefer quality works, which is less possible in gig-economy. It means that sustainability is at stake in gig-economy (Zysman et al. 2014). Inconsistent working is another threat that according to all the respondents are problems with the gig-workplace. It is very difficult for freelancer to be consistent with their jobs. They gets habituated with such stuff and find this difficult to be consistent with their job. Gaps are highly evident, which rarely happens as long as employees stay in organisations (Nevin 2017).

Conclusion

Gig-economy is a highly incremented option for the Millennial, which has attracted many Millennial towards the concept. It has brought rapid changes in the working style. Now organisations do not only depend on traditional workplace. They instead have some other options as well such as part time workers and freelancers. Freelancers in particular have opened up ample of options to the employers. They can now get their job done from external resources as well. However, quality of works might hamper, as they are not recognised faces who work as a freelancer for organisations. The interview conducted with randomly selected eight respondents of TreeBox Solutions Company in Singapore has helped to conclude the research report. The results were in the line of literature review as it supplied the same information. Different respondents differed in their responses to each other slightly. However, they more or less supplied the same set of information, which also helped the learner to conclude the report. Gig-economy is a good option for the Millennial provided they are consistent with their jobs and provide quality to their works. Inconsistent work performance is a threat to consistent earning. On contrary to this, inconsistent performance in traditional workplace does not hamper the earning to that extent. This is because employees in such workplace intentionally or unintentionally perform their duty. On contrary to this, it is never possible with the gig-workplace. Gig-economy has some strength as well some weaknesses. It all depends on the freelancers that how they tackle with the challenging situation in the gig-economy.

References

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