Your Job Is About to Get “Taskified”

Many in the digital industry are auditing jobs and identifying each task to increase productivity and give more assignments to temporary workers. “Corporations, from the smallest start-ups to the largest firms, can now ‘taskify’ everything from scheduling meetings and debugging websites, to finding sales leads and managing fulltime employees' HR files,” explains Mary L. Gray for the Los Angeles Times. “This online piecework, or ‘crowdwork,’ represents a radical shift in how we define employment itself.” She tells the story of a young Indian entrepreneur and temp worker who organized a crew to manage digital tasks for Amazon Mechanical Turk. Such subcontracting can violate agreements, and the companies often have clauses allowing them to close accounts and deny payments “for any reason.” Researchers suggest that about one-third of all jobs in the United States could be so taskified before 2050. “Businesses (and their customers) demand an all-hours, at-the-ready workforce,” Gray concludes. “But to get that, workers need portable healthcare, a basic income, paid leave and retirement plans.” Otherwise, societies risk unrest and destabilization. – YaleGlobal

Your Job Is About to Get “Taskified”

Digital jobs are organized by task for outsourcing – this could happen to a third of US jobs in 20 years, making labor laws and enforcement irrelevant
Mary L. Gray
Thursday, February 18, 2016

Read the article from the Los Angeles Times.

Mary L. Gray is a researcher at Microsoft Research, a fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society, and an associate professor at
Indiana University. She is co-writing a book about on-demand economies and the future of work with computer scientist Siddharth Suri.

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