- Companies are hiring more seasonal gig workers but aren't doing much to include them in company dialogue, according to a survey by workplace communication company Speakap. The company's poll of 500 HR executives at large organizations in the U.S., U.K., Germany, Spain and the Netherlands found that gig workers' temporary status has likely caused employers to exclude them from engagement efforts.
- Speakap also found that leaders, managers and operations employees perceive older seasonal gig workers as less engaged than younger gig workers, but that the former group does "nothing" to engage the latter. And although employees prefer a personal touch from employers, survey results show that organizations with many seasonal gig workers treat those workers less personally than organizations with fewer gig workers do.
- "Seasonal hiring is increasing and the gig economy will keep growing, there's no doubt about that," Erwin Van Der Vlist, Speakap's co-founder and CEO, said in a statement. "By using seasonal workers as an example, we're now seeing that the way in which companies traditionally engage, motivate and speak with their employees is not evolving with or reaching this growing, often deskless, workforce."
Gig workers continue to be a growing segment of the workforce. A report released in June by MBO Partners found high confidence among gig workers globally, and that gig workers in the U.S. generated about $1.28 trillion in revenue for the nation's economy in 2018. MBO Partners also found that the number of "occasional independents" — those who supplement their full-time work with gig work — numbered 15 million in 2019.
Such workers can also contribute to the agility of an organization, due to the temporary nature of their roles. But embracing agility means HR must be able to adjust to changes in the way work gets done, experts previously told HR Dive, which includes embracing digital transformation. Going forward, HR leaders may also find it difficult to balance agility and instilling meaning into the employee value proposition.
As the Speakap findings suggest, engagement of remote workers can serve as an opportunity for employers to differentiate themselves in a changing talent market. Employers may want to take a closer look at engagement efforts early in the onboarding process in order to improve and refine the way workers transition between contingent roles within their organization.