In a report released on Tuesday, the research group Fairwork India slammed Ola, Uber, Dunzo, PharmEasy, and Amazon Flex, giving them all a score of 0 for how well they treat their gig workers.
The research project, which included partners from the University of Oxford, found that the companies listed above did not treat their gig workers fairly regarding pay, contracts, management, representation, or working conditions.
The company looked at 12 companies and gave Urban Company, a unicorn, a score of 7 out of 10. It gave scores of 6 to online grocery store Bigbasket, 5 to Flipkart and Swiggy, 4 to Zomato, 2 to grocery delivery company Zepto, and 1 to delivery company Porter, which Tiger Global backs.
Fairwork India said in its fourth annual report, “This year, only Bigbasket, Flipkart, and Urban Company got the first point because they publicly promised to pay workers at least the hourly local minimum wage after taking into account work-related costs.”
“Bigbasket and Urban Company have made this happen by agreeing to pay back the difference between workers’ hourly pay and the local minimum wage per hour after costs. Flipkart and Urban Company have promised that, after costs, their prices for workers will be based on the hourly local minimum wage. Flipkart has also taken steps to make sure that its third-party service providers meet the same standards,” the report said.
Even though the number of people working in the “gig economy” has grown significantly in recent years, they don’t get many employee benefits like health insurance. Many researchers say that the companies that hire these people to do work for them take advantage of them and try to limit their liability.
“The digital platform economy’s promise of flexibility brings as many questions about jobs as it does opportunities. The team’s leaders, Professors Balaji Parthasarathy and Janaki Srinivasan said in a statement, “We hope the Fairwork report gives us a way to think about the flexibility that gives workers not only the adaptability that platforms want but also the income and social security that they don’t have.”