Bracing for the gig economy – Want Things Done matches cost with quality in their concierge-like service
In America, the gig economy has been booming for some time; in Singapore, it’s only the beginningFor immediate release, 13th November 2017, Singapore – In America, the independent workforce contributes an estimated $1 trillion annually in freelance earnings to their economy. With this recent boom, you can bet it’s spreading to the rest of the world. Companies are feeling the squeeze from financial strain and opting to hire independent contractors for work that need not be performed full-time; whereas independents are exploring the gig economy for flexibility and freedom.
In Singapore, there’s a steady increase of graduates joining the independent workforce. In NTU, those in art, design, and media who went freelance increased from 22.4 percent to 33.1 percent on 2015 and 2016. In NUS, graduates in industrial design who chose the independent career went up from 12% to 25% in 2015 and 2016. During the debate on the Manpower Ministry’s budget, seven MPs appealed for more help for the independent workforce. West Coast GRC Foo Mee Har suggested setting up CPF contributions to better support these independents’ financial needs.
Diversity is winning over routine
Independent contractors see the gig economy as the freedom economy. Thanks to advances in communication technology, they have the flexibility to work from anywhere they want as long as they have an internet connection – a factor considered to be a huge perk. With an increased commitment to work-life balance and a growing preference of having income from a variety of sources, it’s little wonder this group of professionals is growing fast.
Finding the sweet spot between cost and quality
Despite having easy access to the independent workforce, it’s still difficult for companies to find someone who has the right balance of cost and quality. That’s when Christina Teo came up with Want Things Done, a startup that matches independent experts with individuals and businesses who need help. “Machine learning is not mature enough yet so Want Things Done adds the human element to the equation,” says Teo. Want Things Done personally screens and matches both sides and creates a concierge-like experience adapting to affordable budgets. The startup is also building a community to provide their independent experts stronger connections, collaborative support and continuous learning. Its launch initiative, GIGshop™, supported through LearnSEED fund, is a series of 12 talks on actionable insights and hands-on knowledge for their gigs to survive and succeed in the gig economy.
Want Things Done is founded by Christina Teo, a corporate veteran and chief community builder of Startup Asia Women and Asia Corporate Women. After working with startups and SMEs in her women’s community, she discovered there’s a big group of them who needed quality talent but couldn’t afford to hire full-time staff.
Want Things Done is hosting a party to celebrate their official launch and organising a photo challenge in search of the best frustrated face. Founder Christina Teo is also available for one-on-one interviews.