The Gig economy

Gigs happen when you pick up temporary work for money, or work as an independent contractor to carry out specific tasks.

The Gig Economy Explained

Chances are, you’ve probably heard the term “gig economy” when reading or learning about DoorDash. The gig economy can sound like something big, scary, or different. But in fact, it’s just a way to talk about earning money that’s been around forever.

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What’s a gig?

Gigs happen when you pick up temporary work for money, or work as an independent contractor to carry out specific tasks.

The majority of us are familiar with the idea of a gig, although we may not call it that. When The Rolling Stones decide to play at Madison Square Garden, they book a gig. But for those of us who aren’t famous, we can pick up a gig when we pick up a new house to clean, mow our neighbor’s lawn, or walk someone’s dog for some extra money. Gigs range in type, and can be as daunting as repainting someone’s large home — or as simple as delivering a meal with DoorDash.

Are gigs and jobs the same thing?

Unlike full-time jobs, gigs are performed by independent contractors, rather than salaried and hourly employees. Gig workers get to choose how much they work, how often they work, and who they choose to work for. Unlike full-time employees, gig workers decide when, how, and how often they perform a task. So instead of having to report to an office (or virtual meeting) every day, gig workers have the freedom to work as they see fit — or as often or as little as they need

How are gigs different?

The gig economy is based on temporary, flexible work. More times than not, “gig economy” is used to describe services provided by freelance writers, rideshare drivers, and third-party apps like DoorDash. Instead of seeking out work at all the restaurants in town, apps like DoorDash connect folks who are ready to work with opportunities — sometimes on the same day they sign up.

Is it hard to get a gig?

With gigs, there are usually no formal interviews, and no long-term obligations. You sign up with an app, contract with your neighbor, or help someone who needs a service. You work, get paid, and are free to go. Once gig workers complete their task, they can move on to their next gig — which might be with the same company, or an entirely new one.

What kind of people do gig work?

All kinds of people.

Gig workers come from all walks of life. Retirees who want to get out of the house. Parents who want to fund their child’s tuition. Kids in college who want to make extra money when not studying. Entrepreneurs who need a flexible schedule while they work towards big goals. And even teachers who want to supplement their income.

Why do people like gig work?

People like gig work because it’s fast and flexible. And because it pays, of course.

Gig work — or, the “gig economy” — provides work for millions who might otherwise not have the opportunity to earn for any number of reasons.

Why Choose DoorDash in the Gig Economy?

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Why should I deliver with DoorDash?

If you’re in between jobs, want a little extra cushion, or are working hard to make ends meet, delivering with DoorDash might just be for you. You can choose your own hours, work when you want, and be your own boss. In this article, we’ll talk about why DoorDash could be right for you.

What’s it like to deliver with DoorDash?

Delivering with DoorDash is pretty simple. You don’t need to go through rounds of interviews or have formal training. In fact, all you need is a smartphone and a form of transportation (bike, car, motorcycle, or scooter).

What do I need to deliver with DoorDash?

Aside from safe transportation and your smartphone, the Dasher app (from DoorDash) has everything you need to earn and complete deliveries from restaurants, convenience stores, drugstores, and even pet shops. Once you start delivering, you’ll also receive an insulated bag and Red Card, which will be useful for you as you dash. Plus, because DoorDash has the #1 Food & Drink app, you’ll be first in line for on-demand work in your area.

The Dasher app lets you:

• Sign up in minutes
• Get paid fast
• Set your own schedule
• Find work near you
• Get help when you need it

If you want to try delivering with DoorDash, it’s easy to get started. Download the Dasher app from the App Store or the Google Play Store.

How much do Dashers make?

On average, Dashers - that's anyone who delivers with DoorDash - earn $22 per hour they work, including 100% of tips. This number can vary depending on where they work. And if you sign up, you could also be eligible for a signup offer. Lastly, you’ll also see promotions like Challenges in the Dasher app, that pay you more for your time.

Speaking of tips, Dashers always get 100% of tips they earn on a delivery.

What makes DoorDash better than other gigs?

Gig work can be rewarding, especially if you get the right gig. DoorDash is constantly offering Dashers a slew of perks — from 2% cash back on every gas purchase with the DasherDirect Business Prepaid Visa Card, to a variety of perks and discounts you can access just because you dash, like deals on Take 5 oil changes, Hertz rental cars, and more.

When it comes to safety, DoorDash provides 24/7 support for Dashers so they can always have help if something goes wrong. DoorDash has a team of engineers who work around the clock to make sure the Dasher app functions flawlessly, and they’re constantly adding new and useful features.

What can I do to earn more?

If you’ve decided dashing is right for you, there’s a whole lot you can do to maximize your earnings.

Dash when it’s busy
Right now, restaurants make up the biggest portion of DoorDash orders. Think of times people get hungry (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and tap ‘Dash Now’ or schedule a Dash in advance to earn when demand is high.

Take your time
When you’re new to dashing, you may need a minute to find parking, or use the app. Go easy on yourself and give yourself the space to get the delivery right.

Dash at specific times
Think of times when people are at home: sporting events, big rain showers, and celebrating on the weekends. These are the times you can earn even more.

Finding Flexible Work

Choosing the right work to meet your needs will depend on who you are and what your goals are. Here are some things to think about when choosing your next job or gig.

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Contract work vs. full-time employment

There are many reasons people are drawn to contract work. Some people, like musicians, enjoy the freedom of creating their own schedule and answering to their own calling. Others who may be more adventurous or independent, may enjoy a job where they can work on their own terms or build their own business.

Working as an independent contractor

Contract work is done by independent contractors. Unlike full-time employment, contract work allows you the freedom to choose when, for how long, and for whom you want work. Independent contractors are musicians, house painters, custodians, plumbers, electricians, and more. And while contract work may lack the perceived stability of full-time employment, many contractors enjoy the flexibility that gig work can provide. 

Your working environment

Do you like driving and fresh air, or do you prefer being indoors? Do you like interacting with people and being sociable, or are you more task oriented and focused? How well do you do with being on time? Is having a work schedule important to you?

When considering your next move, be it gig work or permanent employment, weigh these questions carefully.

The value of your time

Ask any corporate economist and you will learn that there are many times where employees who work in stores or offices are not productive. If all the stock has been put away and there are no customers shopping, it can become a slow night. With gig work, when you’re working, you’re actively earning, so your time is spent more efficiently. And when you’re not working, that time is yours to enjoy. Just switch off the app until you’re ready to work again.

Maintaining a work-life balance

If you value the freedom to make your own schedule and be your own boss, an office job may not be for you. Additionally, many people who have kids or parents to care for may not be able to work shifts that interact with bedtime or mealtime. Depending on your duties to your partner or family, finding work that can provide you with monetary rewards, as well as the ability to take care of yourself and loved ones, is more important now than ever.

The takeaway?

Choosing a career path isn’t always easy. However, if you’re looking to supplement your income, in the middle of a life transition, or find that traditional employment isn’t for you, gig work like delivering with DoorDash can help you explore your options or can set you on the path to achieving your dreams.

You can try delivering with DoorDash by signing up here.