Promoting the Gig Economy

Productivity Commissioner Jonathan Coppel addressed members recently about the challenges and opportunities for the local recruitment industry under the new ‘gig’ economy.

The commissioner outlined the Commission’s recently released white paper Digital Disruption, What Governments need to do, which provides an insight into the ‘gig economy and the major shift and impact it may have on employment and workplaces in Australia.

According to the Commissioner, recruitment businesses have the opportunity to continue to act as intermediaries in a ‘gig’ economy by reorienting their businesses to different tasks. While the commissioner identified that skill matching will remain important, it will be employment advisory services and professional advice for example, on matters such as remuneration and benchmarking that will pave the way forward for recruitment service providers in a ‘gig’ economy.

The Commissioner also suggested that regulation, policy and law will be challenged and will need to adapt as the ‘gig’ economy grows.

“The gig economy is a new type of relationship between employer and employee. It can be as short as an hour for a specific task or it could be for much longer,” Jonathan Coppel said. That opens up a whole bundle of issues relating to the obligations of the employer and the employee and whether they are different from the traditional model of engagement.”