Workforce WindsorEssex Launches Report Examining the Regional Gig Economy
New report explores benefits, challenges, and opportunities for gig workers and their employers in Windsor-Essex
For Immediate Release
March 29, 2023
Windsor, ON – Today, Workforce WindsorEssex released a report, The Gig Economy and Windsor-Essex, to illustrate how gig workers contribute to and form an essential part of the region’s labour force. This Employment Ontario project is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.
Statistics Canada defines the jobs that make up the gig economy as “short-term tasks, projects, or jobs, with no assurance of steady employment.” As of July 2021, one in 10 employed Canadians were gig workers – with a third considering joining the gig economy – and over a third of Canadian employers have gig workers on-staff. By December 2022, there were over 280,000 Canadians who had provided taxi/rideshare services or food delivery alone over the last year. The pandemic has highlighted the importance of gig workers in tourism, recreation, and entertainment, as consumer behavior has changed, creating short and long-term challenges and opportunities for the industry. The report shows the need for flexible workforce solutions.
The report provides readers an opportunity to see for themselves what being a gig worker in Windsor-Essex entails as a result of direct consultations with local gig workers. For example, 50% of gig workers described themselves as working the equivalent to full-time hours when combining their gig work positions, while the remaining 50% described themselves as working part-time hours in a gig position in combination with a permanent full-time position. The report further illustrates the unique perspective of gig workers across different sectors, their motivations behind seeking gig work, as well as the obstacles which gig workers in Windsor-Essex face in their efforts to live in our region through gig employment.
It also highlights strides made in the region to provide greater opportunities for those working in the local gig economy, including:
- Cost-efficient platforms such as AyeWork and AmbiMi that match gig workers and employers without cost to users, resulting in a positive experience for both parties.
- Transit improvements proposed under the City of Windsor’s Transit Master Plan, which aims to better reflect the population’s needs and improve reliability and comfort for transit users.
- Entrepreneurship development opportunities available through the University of Windsor’s EPICentre and the Downtown Windsor Business Accelerator, which provide resources and training for gig workers to start their own businesses.
As a result of these consultations and further research into community partners, the report recommends next steps for gig workers, employers, and community partners to improve the quality of life for those in the gig economy. For workers, becoming familiar with new employment platforms can result in greater opportunities to match their skills with a relevant employer. One of the steps employers can take is to view gig experience in candidates as a positive indicator for success in an open position, as gig workers often have varied job experience as a necessity to the nature of their work or for financial reasons. Community partners also have opportunities to develop events or courses catered to gig workers, such as information sessions or workshops to address gaps in marketing skills brought up by local gig workers, as well as information on the rights of gig workers. Even within a rapidly-evolving labour landscape, gig workers will continue to be an important presence throughout Windsor-Essex and this report serves to show how this can continue successfully.
“The importance of gig workers in our local economy is often overlooked, yet they play such a large role in the service, finance, and creative industries that support our community. It is important that their businesses and positions are valued and supported through the business community as well, with the same opportunities as other small business owners.”
- Tashlyn Teskey, Manager of Research Projects, Workforce WindsorEssex
<<L’importance des travailleurs au sein de l’économie à la demande est souvent ignorée, pourtant ils offrent un rôle tellement important dans les domaines de service, finance et dans les industries créatives qui soutiennent notre communauté. C’est important que leurs entreprises et leurs positions soient appréciés et soutenues avec les mêmes opportunités que d’autres propriétaires de petites entreprises.>>
- Tashlyn Teskey, Responsible de projets de recherche, Workforce WindsorEssex
“The gig economy is a part of what makes Windsor-Essex is such a dynamic community. Part of the goal of this report is showing just how diverse gig work is and how many sectors that are essential to our way of life rely on gig workers. These include well-known jobs like ride services and food delivery, but also those employed in skilled trades, technical services, and entertainment. By showing how vibrant and hard-working they are, this report will put the perspective of gig workers front-and-centre so they can be supported and how our community can overcome the challenges they face. It is clear that improvements for the lives of gig workers will be improvements to our daily lives as a whole.”
- Nik Prsa, Project Coordinator and Research Analyst, Workforce WindsorEssex
<< L’économie à la demande contribue au dynamisme communautaire ici dans Windsor-Essex. Un bût de ce rapport est de surligner la diversité du travail à l’économie, afin de démontrer comment ces secteurs essentiels touchent nos vies au quotidien. Ces emplois sont bien connus et comprennent les services de transport et la livraison de nourriture, les métiers spécialisés, les services techniques et le divertissement. En montrant comment ces travailleurs dynamiques travaillent fort, ce rapport mettra la perspective de ces travailleurs au centre de la discussion afin qu’ils puissent être soutenus. C’est clair que les améliorations dans les vies des travailleurs à demande seront aussi des améliorations dans notre vie quotidienne dans son ensemble.>>
- Nik Prsa, Project Coordinator and Research Analyst, Workforce WindsorEssex
- View the Gig Economy Report at www.workforcewindsoressex.com/gig-economy-report/.
- Workforce WindsorEssex collects local job postings and apprenticeship postings from 55 job boards and employer websites to better understand employer demand for talent and to simplify job search via our innovative job finding tools: Job Board, Job Map, and Career Explorer.
Executive Assistant and Researcher
About Workforce WindsorEssex
Workforce WindsorEssex is a workforce and community development board whose mission is to lead regional employment and community planning for the development of a strong and sustainable workforce.
Workforce WindsorEssex is an experienced leader in the development of regional labour market tools, research, guides, and events that create positive change in the local labour market while saving others time and effort. These resources, created in close coordination with employment, education, and industry partners, are designed to help jobseekers, employers, students, and educators, as well as the community, make more informed labour market decisions using locally-responsive, data-rich, and unbiased resources. To learn more about Workforce WindsorEssex and view our tools and resources, visit www.workforcewindsoressex.com.
À propos de Workforce WindsorEssex
Workforce WindsorEssex est une organisation à but non-lucratif dont sa mission est de diriger la planification de l’emploi et le développement communautaire avec l’objectif d’assurer une main-d’œuvre solide et durable.
Workforce WindsorEssex est leader expérimenté dans le développement d’outils, de recherches, de guides et d’événements sur le marché du travail créant des changements positifs qui font gagner de l’argent et du temps. Ces ressources, crées en coordination avec les partenaires en emploi, en éducation et en industrie, ont pour but d’aider les demandeurs d’emploi, les employeurs, les élèves, les éducateurs, et la communauté, à prendre des décisions plus informées sur le marché du travail en utilisant des outils impartiaux, riches en données et adaptés aux besoins locaux. Pour apprendre d’avantage de Workforce WindsorEssex, et pour engager avec nos outils et ressources, visitez www.workforcewindsoressex.com.
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