It’s all about the hustle…

It’s all about the hustle…

Recruitment, for many years, dealt with people looking to move forward with their careers, or those wishing to change what they did between 9am and 5pm.

However, a new report shows that, in today’s job market, there’s as much need for recruiters’ help during the 5pm-9pm, or indeed, any range of hours outside the norm.

For a percentage of the working population, and for more than just financial reasons, our main job is not enough for us nowadays.

The gig economy is not just for freelancers who want an alternative to the 9-5, it’s becoming increasingly populated by those who already work these hours but who still need to earn more. For those with a ‘side hustle’, i.e. a second job, or a small business that fits around office hours.

A number of people with a side hustle are graduates, who work one, two – even three – jobs around their studies to earn enough to keep their head above water. For some graduates, however, a side hustle has proved an alternative way into an industry or job of choice – a sort of back door to entry, if you will.

Zero-hour contracts are another reason why some people have more than one ‘main’ job; however, as employers typically require their workers to be fully flexible, it must be difficult to juggle more than one role, despite there being little guarantee from either boss that there will be enough hours on offer from either job to pay the bills.

The cost of living was cited as the main reason secondary employment is sought. Low wages that fail to meet inflation are not ideal, but to some workers, they’re grateful that they’re at least in employment, which is better than the alternative. Finding a side hustle to top up their income for a few extra hours each week is how they reduce the stress of financial strain.

Although more money tends to be the biggest driver, the report found that some people choose a side hustle simply for a creative outlet – for the satisfaction of doing something they love, which they don’t get to indulge in as part of their main role.

The gig economy has blossomed by 70% since 2010 and even employers who favour the 9-5 have opened up to different ways of working. The technology exists to work from anywhere at any time, whether it’s someone’s main job, secondary job or third role. Who needs sleep?!

Our world is 24/7, so it’s not surprising that time has become much more fluid when it comes to working hours. Want a Big Mac at 3am? You can, but someone needs to be at your nearest 24hr McDonalds to cook it and serve you. Perhaps you want to take advantage of the quiet ambience at 1am in Asda – no long queues for the till or empty shelves. You still need security guards, supervisors, shelf stackers. Some of these roles may be the employees one and only job; for some, it may be a mixture of two or three ‘main’ roles, and for others, it will be their side hustle.

Recruitment agencies can still play their part in securing roles for the hustlers. The people going for such roles could just as easily be the top talent you’re searching for, with regards to their main gig; if this article shows anything, it’s that part-time workers aren’t all parents looking for roles to fit around school hours, or college students earning a little pocket money for their budding social lives. It could be someone training to be a lawyer who’s not quite making big bucks yet; the creative cream looking for a back door into - and experience of - the world of tech; the experienced manager exploring different roles and industries ahead of a complete career change…who knows?

Including part-time and secondary roles will undoubtedly increase the diversity, age range and skills base of your agency’s talent pool. Not all side hustles are location-based, which could also open up different markets globally.

Think about the needs of your candidates: do they want a 40-hour a week role with one company, or would they prefer two 20-hour roles with different employers to gather an even greater amount of skills and experience? The recruitment landscape is constantly evolving, and top talent nowadays may not want to pour themselves into just one position or opportunity.

A good portion of recruiters today understand that time is fluid and use flexibility as a tool to attract the best candidates. They’re also in a prime position to advise their clients whether they need to rethink traditional working hours if they wish to employ the cream of the talent pool. They may even suggest ‘mini roles’, for valued candidates who wish to break down their working week to incorporate more than one job or a number of hustles.

The side hustle is a way of life for many of us. For this reason alone, it’s an aspect agencies should explore and not ignore…

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