Uber Launches New App Amid Financial Instability
Uber is launching a new app that will connect gig workers to temporary job openings.
The new app comes at a time when the company is facing increasing regulation and difficulty in turning a profit. The new app debuted in Chicago on Thursday. The aim is to pair temporary workers with available job openings, rather than employ them directly.
The current app being rolled out was tested throughout the past year. The pivot towards acting as a middleman for gig workers could strengthen the financial sustainability o the ride-hailing company. Earlier this year, a new California law required Uber to classify its drivers as employees rather than independent contractors. The reclassification would incur major costs on Uber.
Uber was unable to turn a profit last quarter. Additionally it had its smallest revenue increase to date, with revenue growing 14% to $3.17 billion. In the wake of this financial turmoil, Uber laid off 400 technical employees in September.
The ride-hailing company is attempting to tap into a growing pool of workers. Gig workers are expected to take up larger shares of the labor market in coming years. According to the International Labor Organization, 43% of the U.S. workforce will be gig workers by 2020. A growing gig economy provides possible financial sustainability for Uber.