With the subprime crisis and technological developments that reduce the number of permanent jobs in conventional companies, Americans have found a new way of working: they are looking for more and more jobs of short or very short duration that allows them to harmonize the private and professional life through the management of their time and salary.
This phenomenon is called gig economy. A movement that sought the term ´gig´ that was attributed to jazz musicians who in the 1920s jumped from bar to bar in the streets of Chicago looking for a work.
This trend has gained importance and the Intuit study predicts that by 2020, 40% of American workers will be self-employed.
There are a number of forces behind this trend:
THE DIGITAL ERA creates a mobile workforce that can work from anywhere and accept jobs from any place in the world. On the other hand, employers can call upon much greater range of offer than they would normally find in their city.
DIGITIZING THE ECONOMY – means that the number of jobs is reduced as they are automated and people are forced to change jobs more often. The gig economy is the corollary of this phenomenon.
Although the liberal professions have done this type of work since always the gig economy is expanding to an increasing number of activities and sectors.
And in Portugal?
There is a culture and legal framework rooted in permanent contracts. Even the younger generations dream of getting one. However, the world does not stop and either we get on the train, or we stay behind.
Refusing the modernization is to make our businesses less extensive than their foreign competitors and to perpetuate an already chronic delay.