Recently, TINYpulse undertook a poll of on-demand workers — the people who drive for Uber or do tasks for TaskRabbit — to better understand what their work experience is like.
We asked these workers a variety of questions, including whether they want to unionize, what parts of the job they like, and what parts of the job they dislike. We also asked them about their general workplace happiness and about whether they intended to continue as an on-demand work.
On that last question — intent to continue in their job — we found that on-demand workers are startlingly less likely to see themselves working at their job in one year. At traditional companies, where employees are hired as staff, high churn is seen as a serious problem. It costs businesses lots of money to replace employees, and high churn is usually an indication of larger problems in the workplace.
But in the on-demand economy, workers are independent contractors. In essence, they can work or not work at their whim. That also means they can leave a job whenever they want. That doesn’t mean that on-demand employers should ignore retention problems.
Adam Price, CEO of food delivery service Homer Logistics, tackled this topic in a recent Medium post. He laid out a case for why on-demand employers should start paying attention to metrics on employee retention.
“Think about the cost of hiring someone as a debt. The company has to pay that hiring cost back before actually making any money that can go to the bottom line. However, the only way to pay the debt back is when the employee/contractor is working and completing tasks; and, if the employee/contractor quits before paying the debt off, the debt defaults,” Price wrote.
Our poll uncovered low retention factors among very specific segments of on-demand workers, however, we feel our findings show a grim retention outlook all on-demand employees. To see what we found, download our on-demand workers report below.