Connect with us


Support helps Wisconsin startups—and workers—build a better gig economy



The rise of the gig economy has brought new challenges. Although it may be easy now to connect workers and businesses, it can still be challenging to make sure those connections are the right ones.

Based on a shared belief that everyone should enjoy their work, Milwaukee-based startups Talimer and WorkShift are tackling that challenge head-on. Though working in two very different industries–hospitality and tech—their approaches are similar, as is their belief that starting in Wisconsin has been a major factor in their success so far.

WorkShift solves scheduling for service workers

Co-founders Manny Lara, Bekki Yang and Julio Fernandez began working on what would become WorkShift in the fall of 2019, with the intentions of building out their service industry staffing platform in time for the Democratic National Convention’s arrival in Milwaukee the following summer.

Though that opportunity never materialized, Lara says the pandemic gave them valuable time to test and build out a platform they believe can transform the restaurant industry’s outdated hiring practices.

WorkShift is an app that lets restaurants fill—and service workers find—open shifts quickly. Lara and Fernandez both have backgrounds in health care human resources and were familiar with similar online platforms connecting nurses with open shifts. When Yang approached them with the idea, they didn’t see why the same wouldn’t work for the service industry.

Lara describes the way restaurants are left to fill empty shifts as “antiquated.” Owners and managers rely on a patchwork approach, calling staff on their days off, asking them to work long shifts or depending on them to recommend temporary help on short notice.

“We’re a marketplace, we’re in the middle with a technology that allows owners to post their availability and then people who want to earn extra see those available shifts and match up,” he says.

WorkShift’s revenue comes from charging restaurants a small upcharge for every shift booked. As restaurants start reopening and events canceled by the pandemic get rescheduled, Lara says restaurants are scrambling to find workers. They are willing to pay to access qualified help on short notice.

On the other side of the equation, WorkShift lets workers who can’t, or don’t want to, work a regular schedule find shifts when they want them. They can indicate the types of jobs they’re interested in and see how much the shifts they’re offered are paying.

“We also want to be able to grow the workforce from within—for example, dishwashers or servers who want to move up to bartender or host,” he says. “We want to work with restaurants and say, ‘We’ve got people that are interested in becoming bartenders or whatever the next level is. Would you host an event where we can teach them?’ Now those workers are more marketable, they can earn a little more, and they become a resource for those bars and restaurants.”

Talimer knows the value of tech talent  

Though Talimer is aimed at a very different set of workers, co-founders Erica Conway and Ken Osterman are also focused on providing a quality experience for both talent and the companies looking to hire them. They’ve both witnessed firsthand the challenges that get in the way of that.

As owner of C2, Conway has been helping tech and creative talent connect with employers for almost two decades; Osterman, though his various positions at Harley-Davidson, had been hiring tech and creative talent for at least as long.

“Existing freelancer platforms—like Fiverr, UpWork and 99designs—are predatory. They’re giving the business all the agency, saying, ‘Hey businesses, come get talent. It’s cheap.’ They’re not educating their clients about the value of this person’s time or why this is the market rate for that time,” Conway says.

“We also interviewed businesses that were using these sorts of marketplaces. They would put a request out and get, in some cases, dozens or even 100-plus responses. Trust became a real question. ‘Who am I working with? Have they been reviewed? Have they been screened?’”

Talimer is hoping to change that by providing concierge-level service to businesses while strongly advocating for talent.

“We take a lot of time on the front end and ask the freelancer: What do you want to be doing? Where do you do your best work? And because we do that front-end work, we end up making matches that last longer and are better for both the client and for the freelancer,” she says.

Unlike most platforms, Talimer lets tech freelancers set their own rates, with the company charging a transparent markup on top of that. For those working 30 or more hours per week through them, Talimer also offers access to benefits like health insurance.

Building connections through FOR-M

Both WorkShift and Talimer have gotten off the ground with help from FOR-M, a free, six-week workshop series sponsored by the MKE Tech Hub Coalition and run by The Commons entrepreneurial skills accelerator and WePivot, a Milwaukee-area organization dedicated to promoting diversity within the tech industry.

Alternating between concept-focused workshops and interactive mentor sessions and culminating in a final pitch session, FOR-M helps new entrepreneurs solidify their startup idea, understand the next steps and connect them with Milwaukee’s tech ecosystem.

Despite their robust professional networks and previous business experience, Lara and Conway both say participating in the program was extremely valuable from a networking and planning perspective.

It was a great room to be in. Just meeting everybody else and hearing their ideas. The people in the room, the mentors that they brought in…It was just a good room to be in, and super diverse,” Conway says. “We ended interviewing people in the program who were freelancing, met people who now have startups that we can do business with. It was overall a great experience that was, for me, driven by the people.”

With funding from WEDC’s Seed Accelerator Program, the MKE Tech Hub Coalition recently awarded WorkShift, Talimer and four other FOR-M startups $10,000 grants.

WorkShift plans to use the funds to help develop a mobile version of its web platform. Longer term, they’re looking at other midsize cities to expand to. “The great thing about technology is once you’ve created it in one market, you really can drop it into a lot of different markets,” Lara says.

As for Talimer, Conway and Osterman are working on adding in some automation to their current hands-on onboarding process.

Thriving thanks to Midwest support

Unsurprisingly, Lara, Conway and Osterman are unabashedly enthusiastic about Wisconsin’s tech and startup community—emphasis on community—and the growth happening within it.

“We got started thanks to a lot of personal relationships and connections. I think Milwaukee is prime for that, along with Madison, Sheboygan, Racine and other places,” Lara says. “I think the advantage we have here is that when you float an idea, you find a lot of supportive people. And they say, well, let me put you in touch with this person or that person, and all of a sudden you’ve got a lot of advocates and supporters that that want to help.”

“Things are really beginning to happen in the startup scene here. And while it’s it is not yet Silicon Valley or one of the other cities that you immediately think of when you think startups, I believe strongly that the city is on the path to get there and to be that place,” Osterman says.

“I think it’s an exciting opportunity to be a part of that journey, not only for us as a business, but to be connected with other businesses in this space. It’s a small community where everyone’s here to help each other. I’ve got friends and former colleagues in Silicon Valley and generally they’re competing against each other. Here, folks are here to help each other and lift each other up. And so there’s a real difference in the Midwest versus what’s happening out in some other cities.”

FOR-M’s spring incubator program is already in progress, but its fall cohort will be starting in September. If you are interested in participating, you can visit to learn more and sign up for updates.

Source link


Universal Basic Income can provide support for people in gig economy




Income supports encourage people to not work? Duh, June 4

In an era of self-regulation, it is presumed that all employers will follow all protocols to ensure the safety of their staff during COVID-19, but perhaps this is not the case, and some employees might prefer to stay at home, instead of facing an unprotected workplace.

Who could blame them?

As far as the Universal Basic Income, in the Ontario trial, is concerned, weren’t most of the participants already working at two jobs in the gig economy and these did not generate enough income to provide stable support to them?

Margaret Perrault, North Bay, Ont.

Source link

Continue Reading


New regulations to improve safety in the gig economy




New regulations requiring online platforms to provide food delivery riders with personal protective equipment and induction training have been announced by NSW Minister for Better Regulation Kevin Anderson.

A new penalty system for riders will also be introduced as part of the reforms “to crackdown on repeated unsafe practices”.

The NSW Government intends to finalise the regulations by November 2021. Public consultations on the proposed laws are expected in September 2021.

The reforms follow a safety blitz conducted by SafeWork NSW, which found 9 out of 10 food delivery riders were not wearing safe, high-visibility clothing. Forty percent of the riders observed were also riding in an unsafe manner.

The measures reflect the recommendations of the final report of the Joint Taskforce into Food Delivery Rider Safety (the Taskforce), which was released on 5 June 2021. The Taskforce was setup in November 2020 to investigate the deaths of 4 food delivery riders in 2020, and to identify safety improvements for the industry.

Other recommendations in the Taskforce’s final report include:

  • further compliance monitoring of the food delivery sector by SafeWork NSW
  • ongoing enforcement activities by NSW Police to ensure food delivery riders comply with road rules
  • finalisation of the Guide to Managing WHS in the Food Delivery Industry, as well as the development of supporting factsheets in multiple languages
  • the provision of reported incident data to food delivery platforms to assist continual improvement of compliance within the industry, and
  • development of guidance on delivery bag standards by Transport for NSW.

Explore further on CCH Pinpoint® — Topic Guide: Gig economy.


Minister for Better Regulation and Minister for Transport and Roads, New laws to drive safety outcomes in the gig economy, [media release], 5 June 2021, accessed 7 June 2021.

SafeWork NSW and Transport for NSW, Joint Taskforce: Food Delivery and Rider Safety (Final Report), 1 April 2021, 7 June 2021.

Source link

Continue Reading


Gig Economy Market to Grow with Sustainable CAGR During 2021 – 2026




Gig Economy  Market to Grow with Sustainable CAGR During 2021 – 2026

The business intelligence report of Gig Economy market accurately predicts the industry’s performance for the upcoming years to aid stakeholders in making beneficial decisions. Important data points like the growth catalysts, restraints, and lucrative prospects molding the market dynamics are deeply analyzed in the report.

Moreover, the study identifies the major challenges for businesses and offers insights into the opportunities that will help the industry progress in unexplored territories. Moreover, the report factors in the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic for stronger realization of the growth trajectory of this domain.

Key highlights from the COVID-19 impact analysis:

  • An overview of the pandemic’s effect on the global economy
  • Supply and demand changes in the industry
  • Current and future market trends in relation to the pandemic

Request Sample Copy of this Report @

An overview the regional landscape:

  • As per the report, the geographical landscape of the Gig Economy market is divided into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, Middle East & Africa, South East Asia.
  • An overview of the growth patterns of each regional industry over the stipulated timeframe is cited.
  • Sales, revenue, and growth rate of each regional contributor is included in the report.

Other highlights from the Gig Economy market report:

  • The product segment of the Gig Economy market is classified into Asset-Sharing Services,Transportation-Based Services,Professional Services,Household & Miscellaneous Services (HGHM) andOthers.
  • The revenue and sales volume predictions of each product type is incorporated in the document.
  • Other important aspects like growth rate, market share, and production patterns of each product type over the analysis period are provided.
  • The application segment of the Gig Economy market is divided into Traffic,Electronic,Accommodation,Food and Beverage,Tourism,Education andOthers.
  • Market share and growth rate of each application segment over the assessment timeframe are enumerated as well.
  • The competitive landscape of the Gig Economy market is defined by key players such as Prosper,Lime,Etsy,BlaBlaCar,VaShare,Envato Studio,Fon,BHU Technology,Didi Global,Snap,,Zipcar,Uber,Toptal,Stashbee,Eatwith,Lyft,Couchsurfing,PeoplePerHour,Spotahome,Care.como,E-stronger,Silvernest,Upwork,Fiverr,Steam,Hubble,Home Away,Omni,Airbnb,JustPark andAirtasker.
  • The report also consists of information regarding the industry share held by every company, along with their pricing models and gross margins.
  • The report evaluates the competition trends and their business implications.
  • Industry value chain analysis with respect to top manufacturers, vendors, and buyers are incorporated in the document.
  • The Gig Economy market report also provides Porter’s five forces analysis and SWOT assessment to determine the feasibility of new project.

Reasons to access this Report:

  • Get to know opportunities and plan strategies by having a strong understanding of the investment opportunities in the Gig Economy Market
  • Identification of key parameter driving investment opportunities in the Gig Economy Market
  • Facilitate decision-making based on strong historic and forecast data
  • Position yourself to gain the maximum advantage of the industry’s growth potential
  • Develop strategies based on the latest reports.
  • Identify key partners and business development avenues
  • Respond to your competitors’ business structure, strategy and prospects
  • Identify key strengths and weaknesses of important market participants

The key questions answered in this report:

  • What will be the market size and growth rate in the forecast year?
  • What are the key factors driving the Global Gig Economy Market?
  • What are the risks and challenges in front of the market?
  • Who are the key vendors in the Global Gig Economy Market?
  • What are the trending factors influencing the market shares?
  • What are the key outcomes of Porter’s five forces model?
  • Which are the global opportunities for expanding the Global Gig Economy Market?

Table of Contents for market shares by application, research objectives, market sections by type and forecast years considered:

Gig Economy Market Share by Key Players: Here, capital, revenue, and price analysis by the business are included along with other sections such as development plans, areas served, products offered by key players, alliance and acquisition and headquarters distribution.

Global Growth Trends: Industry trends, the growth rate of major producers, and production analysis are the segments included in this chapter.

Market Size by Application: This segment includes Gig Economy market consumption analysis by application.

Gig Economy market Size by Type: It includes analysis of value, product utility, market percentage, and production market share by type.

Profiles of Manufacturers: Here, commanding players of the global Gig Economy market are studied based on sales area, key products, gross margin, revenue, price, and production.

Gig Economy Market Value Chain and Sales Channel Analysis: It includes customer, distributor, market value chain, and sales channel analysis.

Market Forecast: This section is focused on production and production value forecast, key producers forecast by type, application, and regions

Request Customization on This Report @

Source link

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2019