The “Gig Economy” is exploding. More than nine out of ten women with side hustles find the work fulfilling and nearly a third say they plan to continue doing independent flexible work forever. More than half of respondents reported adding over $500 to their monthly household incomes through their side hustles. Most reported their hourly earnings were below $20, with 43% reporting earning $20 or more per hour. Women were most likely to report they gigged between 5 and 9 hours a week.
The new “Women in the Gig Economy 2018,” commissioned by BabyQuip, Ruby Ribbon and UrbanSitter, found roughly 40% of the U.S. workforce makes 40% of its income through gig work.
When rating how important various aspects of their gig economy work was to them, 65% of respondents indicated flexibility is “extremely important,” with another 30% saying it is “very important.” In all, flexibility is important to 95% of respondents. What’s more, women with children under age 5 were more likely to select “more time with children” (54%), another form of flexibility, as the reason they gig.
While flexibility is the leading reason women report they gig, income is a close second. Overall, 38% of women indicated they side hustle to “earn a good income.” When asked to rate how much importance they place on various aspects of their side hustles, “earning money” was most likely to be rated “extremely important” (66%). More than half of respondents reported adding over $500 to monthly household incomes through their side hustles.
WHY WOMEN GIG
Most women reported they are either “somewhat” satisfied or “extremely” satisfied (20%) with the money they earn. Only 12% of women report being dissatisfied with their earnings. The survey found that women who have been doing this work for 3 or more years enjoy higher earnings, with 59% earning $500 or more and over a third (36%) earning over $999 per month.
Women most commonly report they use their side hustle earnings to cover general household expenses like mortgage and rent, car payments and food costs. When considering only age, women in their 20s are the most likely age group to use earnings to pay off student loans and other debt, while women in their 50s and 60s are the most likely age groups to use side gig income to save for retirement. The survey also found that most prefer to have an independent contractor relationship with the company that provides their side hustle opportunities (61%), rather than being traditional employees (12%).
Ruby Ribbon, UrbanSitter and BabyQuip created the first multi-company survey of women who have chosen side hustles as a means for supplementary or, in some cases, primary income.