In recent years, co-operative enterprises such as Uber, Deliveroo and Airbnb have redefined the way we conceptualise and do work. These start-ups center work flexibility and speed of service as key features of their business model. The proliferation of this business model has been termed the ‘Uberisation’ of the workplace.
Whilst many have hailed the apparent work flexibility of enterprises such as Airbnb and Uber as a positive alternative to more rigid work structures, a deeper look may paint a more negative picture. Critics of this business model have highlighted that the work flexibility espoused by these enterprises do not benefit workers, but lead to the quashing of workplace rights, no minimum wages and a lack of job security. Without regulations in place to protect both workers and customers, these apps may herald a new era of deregulated, precarious and casualised work.
PPE applicants may want to consider the economic and political implications of ‘Uberisation’ — how will this effect income disparities in big cities? Will ‘Uberisation’ result in an increase in employment, but a lowering of wages?