Women in 2020 – is the gig economy for you?

October 22, 2020
min read

There’s no denying that this year has significantly affected families around the world, from overall health and safety to daily childcare services and jobs.

Especially impacted are working moms who have been shouldering much of the demand of homeschooling kids with school closures and distant learning.

While the hospitality industry is on the cusp of making a return, the negative impact of the pandemic is only just beginning to be revealed.  CNN states that 36% of New York City restaurants expect to still be in business by January 2021, while 64% said they are likely or somewhat likely to close by the end of the year (full list of NYC restaurant closures here).

In addition, when COVID-19 hit the United States in mid-March, the country saw a steep decline in the employment rate tied to a large amount of job loss in traditionally women-held positions, including hospitality. For women, not only were some losing their full-time salaried jobs, but many were (and are) finding it increasingly harder to operate a traditional work schedule with the increase in at-home responsibilities.

Increasing demands at home

Women are three times more likely to take on the majority of housework and childcare in 2020. As the survey from Lean In also states, “Women who work full time and have a partner and children are typically spending 20 more hours a week on housework and caregiving than men in the same situation. Women of color and single mothers are doing even more.”

Even before this year, women were wearing multiple hats around the home and in their professional careers. This only amplified during the pandemic with childcare services seeing a steep decrease or halt completely.

In one report done by the United Nations, it was found that women during the pandemic spend 4.1 hours per day on unpaid care and domestic work, compared to 1.7 hours per day for men.

Women have also been disproportionately losing their jobs when compared to men due to existing inequalities in the workforce.

4.8 million hospitality and leisure jobs have been lost since February, with a study from McKinsey finding that women makeup 39 percent of global employment but account for 54 percent of overall job losses.” McKinsey also estimates that female job loss rates due to COVID-19 are about 1.8 times higher than male job loss rates globally, at 5.7 percent versus 3.1 percent respectively.

So, how can exactly the Gig Economy help?

How can the Gig Economy help?


Let’s start at the core: What is a Gig Economy? And how did it become a helpful buzzword?

You’ve likely heard this term thrown around the Internet when platforms like Uber, Postmates, Wag!  first introduced the ability to work seasonally or hourly from anywhere in the US with a tap on your mobile screen. With demands for contractor and temporary employee work rising in 2020, the industry has also seen a rise in women who are working gig jobs.

54% of women surveyed by Biz Journal claim they are now spending more than 10 hours a week on their side hustles and of those women, 60% say that they plan on continuing their side hustle for 5 or more years, where 32% say that they plan to “gig” forever. What’s more, three San Francisco startups jointly commissioned a survey, which states that 44% of women now have a side gig and of those women, 65% said it is ‘extremely important’ to maintain flexibility.

Gigging is helping women gain job satisfaction by being able to use their experience for the most relevant opportunities available to them. With opportunities to continue upskilling capabilities and expertise in their roles, gigging has provided a place that feels welcoming for women as industry experts and consultants in their field.

Furthermore, the gig economy has greatly bridged the pay gap between women and men. In Payoneer’s 2020 Global Freelancer Income Report, “a freelancing woman earns on average 84 percent of what a man earns while, according to the World Economic Forum, it is as low as 64 percent for those in a traditional full-time salaried position.” Women’s share of the workforce is largely increasing year after year because of job opportunities, satisfaction, and ultimately, flexibility.

Within the Gig Economy, women can hold the power to make decisions about when they work and where.

This also opens up the window for additional time and, thus, child care at home.

As more people have been looking for side jobs and gigs due to volatility in the job market, the digital economy has provided more room for freelancers, and online services such as Instacart who have hired as much as 300,000 people in one month to cater to the increase in demand. Similar to what is happening with apps like Etsy and Upwork, our demand for talent has increased 275% over the past quarter as museums, art galleries, schools, and restaurants start to reopen in the metro areas.

Back in June, 2020, IBIS World estimated the number of temporary employees is estimated to increase by 1.8% in 2020, which means 16.3 million people will be looking for temporary work to fulfill their needs this year alone. At Jitjatjo, we also expect this number to significantly increase over the next few months with companies planning to keep their fixed labor costs as low as possible, and gain access to their ex-employees on an on-demand basis..

Flex by Jitjatjo naturally builds a greater force to support gig workers, so that women (or anyone) can make their own schedule–with full autonomy. You can easily create custom schedules that enable the flexible work you need, especially in the time of a global pandemic.

It’s all about maintaining flexibility, matching you with gigs based on your experience and preference, and sending funds to your bank account within hours of gig completion.

Solution for you

While it’s not for every household, joining the “gig” economy can be a solution for those who may have lost or have had to say goodbye to full-time salaried positions to bring more flexibility and autonomy into your personal life.

As a direct result of years of research put behind the platform at Jitjatjo, the app shows no bias in gender roles or pay and you can seamlessly pick the schedule that works around your day.  If you’ve already decided to move on from a full-time salaried position, gig work may be a solution for you.

We hope Flex by Jitjatjo may provide a turnkey short-term replacement, if not a long-term solution for you. Get started here.


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