The pandemic has changed the global hiring and workplace engagement trends. But, even before the COVID-19 first made its presence felt, the Gig Workforce was a much talk-about trend in the hiring industry. As we see a very high percentage of enterprises and SMBs scouting for the skilled workforce, the gig economy is certainly going to be a permanent feature in the hiring market. We are witnessing new platforms such as Gig Customer Service, Gig Customer Experience Management (GigCX), and Contractual Employee experience management platforms getting industry-wide recognition from C-suite decision-making groups. Limitless is one such platform.
Pre-COVID-19 reports would reveal that a majority of companies hired gig workforce as a contingent to cut labor costs. During the pandemic, this trend turned into a means to sustain and consolidate market position even as others started cutting down jobs or putting employees on furlough.
Limitless is a gig customer service (GigCX) platform, combining crowdsourcing and AI to help global businesses address their biggest customer service challenges – rising costs, increasing attrition, variability in demand and the need for diversity. Brands like Microsoft, Unilever, Sage, eBay and L’Oreal are using Limitless’ SmartCrowd™ technology to connect with their most engaged customers and reward them for providing on-demand customer service that can flex in line with demand. But, that’s not what separates Limitless from the rest in the field. Limitless became one of the first GigCX platforms to release a “Gig Charter” for the industry.
According to the GoodGig® Charter, companies should ensure their contingent or gig workforces are treated equally and paid in their local currency.
At the time of this announcement, Megan Neale, Limitless Co-founder and COO said –
“The holiday period is often a time of intense activity for freelance workers, followed by a slump in available work in the new year. Coupled with the extra pressure caused by COVID-19 this year, the picture is far from clear for the increasingly large number of workers who are employed on a gig basis globally. Today, we’re calling on brands to ensure that they stick to basic principles when it comes to engaging with a non-permanent workforce which will guarantee a professional, rewarding experience on both sides.”
The platform provider, which enables those in the gig economy to earn money for providing customer service for well-known brands such as Microsoft, Unilever and eBay, wants to share its guiding principles as the seasonal peak in temporary work begins in order to create a better, more fair working environment for gig workers this holiday season and beyond.
The Limitless platform is used by over 5000 gig experts worldwide to provide ‘GigCX,’ the term used for the pool of gig expert talent, mainly made up of the brand’s own customers, that can provide on-demand customer service. The platform routes customer service inquiries securely to these knowledgeable GigCX ‘Experts’ As customers of the brands, Experts are able to resolve a wide variety of product and service-related support tickets.
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What does the New Gig Workforce Charter Reveal?
The release of the Limitless GoodGig® Charter, also marks the start of the traditional ‘holiday rush’ when companies begin to bolster their permanent workforce with ‘giggers.’ It sets out the guidelines that Limitless uses to guide its engagement with its Experts, and its own unique gig model.
Unlike many gig models such as delivery or taxi services where those who gig may eventually begin to gig on a full time basis for one company, Limitless does not encourage its people to gig full time. Its experts average a few hours each week to supplement other income, with many gigging across several platforms so as not to place reliance on any one source.
The charter also outlines that anyone with talent can access customer service gig tasks on the platform easily and at the same time exit the gig platform without fear of penalties or the loss of significant upfront costs. This comes as a stark contrast to many recent negative reports surrounding other alternative services, whereby work-from-home agents who had to ‘pay to work’ and who were expected to shoulder startup fees were recently let go without compensation.
The charter also attempts to embrace practices that positively impact the lives of the gig community, the end-customer and the brands they support. It seeks to ensure that Experts are rewarded fairly for their time and that they also have the freedom to choose to take on tasks or not. It includes advice on how to champion diversity and inclusivity, paying Experts a fair local market rate in their local currency, and making sure that Experts are not treated differently according to the amount of gig tasks that they take on: a phenomenon experienced by many gig workers on other platforms who are penalized for not taking on enough gig tasks.
According GigCX Expert Jo, a travel agent who answers customer service queries for Microsoft and XBOX, GigCX has helped provide a flexible, additional source income during the challenging economic times experienced by many during the pandemic: “I tend to respond to gig tasks in the evenings, or if I have time on my lunch break, or even at weekends. That’s why I love it so much – it’s just so flexible. I frequently help with a range of account and subscription-based questions. I tend to log on most days, even if it’s just for an hour or so, either from home, or if I’m out, from the app on my phone. I love it that the gig tasks don’t tie you down to any particular hours – you’re not told you have to do a certain amount a week. The flexibility is amazing.”
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Great Compensation for Above Average Workplace Performance
“At seasonal peaks in particular, it’s important that business scale responsibly, and remember that just because GigCX is a solution that is comparable in price to virtual agents and automation, does not mean that the gig workforce shouldn’t be recognized as equal to full-time equivalent humans that are in permanent roles,” said Roger Beadle, Limitless co-founder and CEO. “This is why we will continue to share our GoodGig® charter. It’s also why we’re continually encouraging companies to adopt GoodGig® practices to ensure fair rewards for working, and lack of pressure to allow Gig Experts to complete work flexibly on their own terms with no penalties for inactivity and no financial commitments to enter into or exit gigging.”
GoodGig® also advocates that people who offer their services on a gig basis should be given equal opportunity without losing the flexibility which underpins the benefits of gigging for both employer and employee.
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