The Indian gig economy is experiencing significant growth following mass layoffs in other sectors. According to the Taskmo Gig Index (TGI), the demand for gig workers has increased fivefold in January 2023, with digital transformation and the COVID-19 pandemic driving companies to adapt their business models to incorporate more freelancers. The TGI also found that the number of users on the Taskmo platform increased by 21 per cent last month.
Gig workers are no longer limited to seasonal work or young people looking for part-time employment. Instead, they are increasingly professional individuals who have created new ways of working to overcome the lack of permanent job opportunities. These self-employed workers provide companies with a flexible, agile workforce that costs less than hiring permanent employees.
The rise of the gig economy has also led to increased demand for tech gigs, content moderators, business development experts, telecallers, brand promoters, and micro-influencers. Top recruiters have extended their reach to Tier-II and Tier-III cities, such as Indore, Bhopal, Ranchi, Lucknow and Vadodara, as companies expand their operations beyond major metropolitan areas. Companies are also offering tech-driven approaches to recruitment, providing multilingual support, job tracking and monitoring solutions and easy payment options.
The gig economy is particularly attractive to millennials, Gen Z and Gen Y. As India aims to become a $5 trillion economy by 2025, the gig economy serves as a building block that helps the country achieve its goal of reducing the gap between unemployment and income. Freelancers, delivery executives, consultants, bloggers and cleaners are all part of the gig economy. With most gig jobs now enabled by platforms, workers have the flexibility to work for multiple contractors simultaneously.
The rise of the gig economy has brought economic benefits to India, with increased productivity and employment opportunities. Despite concerns over start-up layoffs, funding crunches and shutdowns, gig tech platforms have experienced a surge in demand for gig workers across the quick commerce, healthtech, fintech and e-commerce sectors.
As the gig economy continues to grow, it remains to be seen how companies will balance the benefits of a flexible workforce with the need for permanent, stable employment opportunities. However, for now, it is clear that the gig economy is an essential component of India's employment landscape and will continue to play a crucial role in driving the country's economic growth.