CareerSource Florida commissioned a comprehensive study on the potential impacts of the emerging gig economy on Florida’s workforce system. This report synthesizes the results of the research undertaken to further CareerSource Florida’s understanding of the gig economy and the potential workforce, education, and economic development implications for Florida.

This report provides a roadmap for CareerSource Florida and partners across the state to engage in the gig economy. The research, input, and findings of this study are organized as follows:

  1. Defining the Gig Economy – It is challenging to measure the scope and scale of the gig economy due to overlap among the employment status of workers, the variety of non-traditional arrangements, and the lack of official employment definitions and differences in self-reported employment status.
  2. Characteristics of Gig Workers – By synthesizing available national surveys, research, and information, the report identifies who gig workers are, why they choose independent work, and what workforce needs and issues they may face.
  3. Businesses and the Gig Economy – Through the exploration of the gig economy through business and industry, the known risks, challenges, and business needs are summarized.
  4. The Gig Economy in Florida – This illustrates the types of gig workers and work in the state and estimates the potential scale, scope, and future impacts of the gig economy in Florida.
  5. Workforce Partner Outreach – Opportunities and challenges for Florida’s workforce system are presented as workforce partners offer ideas and input.
  6. Policy and Programmatic Considerations – Potential opportunities based on the ideas and input of workforce, education, and economic development partners across Florida with additional insights from CareerSource Florida’s Board of Directors are presented for consideration.

Major Findings & Recommendations

Key Findings

  • The future labor market will look different than it does today.
  • Occupations and workforce skills are likely to continue to evolve to meet changing technologies, products, platforms, and customer needs.
  • Florida’s workforce partners are aware the future of work is changing, and non-traditional work arrangements, including gig economy positions, are more likely to continue to grow and expand their share of the overall labor market.
  • The workforce and education systems must change and evolve to meet future needs for workers and businesses, including a focus on entrepreneurship, transferable skills development, and encouragement of alternative work.
  • Opportunities exist for new partnerships, service delivery models, rehabilitation avenues, placement and skills-building programs, and entirely new services to be provided by Florida’s workforce, education, and economic development partners.

Recommendations

  • To provide greater flexibility, continued innovation, and a continued focus on entrepreneurship, CareerSource Florida and partners can consider the following strategies.
  • Convene state and regional leaders to develop policy recommendations and influence pending workforce reauthorization and legislative discussions at the federal level.
  • Encourage shifts in federal and state workforce guidelines and performance outcomes to better reflect demand from businesses for independent workers and to enable local boards to provide placement and training services for independent and remote workers.
  • Develop statewide guidance for local workforce development boards to clarify program guidelines and recognize independent work training and development services as an authorized and eligible activity under the entrepreneurial sections of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
  • Introduce additional statewide grant funding and a programmatic emphasis, similar to the recent focus on apprenticeships, to leverage existing entrepreneurship programs and encourage consistent statewide policy on gig workers.