Just when we were getting used to the idea of the gig economy, where more people are freelancing and living project-to-project, things are changing again. And fast.
We're seeing a surge in companies that enable professionals to hire themselves out for ever smaller jobs. Some are so short-term, they can hardly be called gigs.
TaskRabbit has created a marketplace for just that -- tasks. Putting together Ikea furniture is one of the site's most popular listings. How much does it pay? An average of $42 per project. (If you've ever spent an entire evening trying to put together an Ikea dresser, you might consider that an incredible deal.)
Then there's Fiverr, a platform where people can post jobs and services starting at $5. Here's a sample: "I will draw your ideas in a cartoon style for $5," and, "I will design a professional business card for $5."
Translation site Rev.com offers low-cost translation services by farming out projects to freelancers, with fees ranging from $1 per minute for audio transcription to 12 cents per word for business document translation.
Welcome to the micro-gig.
The Atomization of Work
This goes beyond straightforward freelancing. Micro-gigs mean people are breaking up their day into little units, creating hyper efficiency for employers, who are paying only for a specific task.