|My union branch, NUJ London freelance, awards a monthly "Trireme Award - for the worst terms since I was last chained to the oars". It would be funny if low pay weren't so prevalent|
As a freelance worker for many years, I increasingly recognise this "flexibility" for what it is: naked exploitation and the tendency to drive down the cost of labour at the expense of the worker. And with an army of unemployed people looking for work, the employer can now enjoy a field day!
A lot of flexible workers kid themselves that they have control over their own work. For the most part, however, for example in my trade, publishing, we don't have much more control than a docker before the abolition of the Lump, scrambling over each other's backs for a day's work.
I've emboldened the particularly irritating management speak in the Standard article in order to heighten the pleasure for jargon masochists among you.
New breed of flexible 'cloud' workers transforming recruitmentThey don't want much, do they?!
Rather than recruiting permanent staff, employers are increasingly tapping into an existing pool of contingent talent.
This "cloud" of flexible workers... around the core workforce, is already changing how we are recruited and how we work...
The need for "talent on demand" also means more of us will have to invest in our own upskilling if we want to be permanently employed on a temporary basis.
...says Jes Ladva, director of recruitment company Synarbor... "With so many organisations operating lean structures they need to bring in people who can hit the ground running. So they are asking recruitment companies to build a pipeline of talented individuals who can meet their exact needs....
"What we are increasingly seeing is that the temporary staff who are more job-ready are the ones who are often acquiring these skills themselves.
"The successful ones are the ones who want to upskill and understand the future needs of different clients."
Russell Beck, vice president of recruitment outsourcing business Carlisle Managed Solutions, ...says that being the right "fit" is also important.
"Companies in London are increasingly looking to adopt new ways of working and we are working with them to redefine what workforce flexibility, or the percentage of permanent to contingent labour, should look like to ensure talent is available on a 'Just in Time' basis," he says.
"...there is an increasing emphasis on identifying a candidate's cultural and behavioural characteristics and whether these are aligned to the company to maximise recruitment success."