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Survey reveals nearly 30% of gig economy workers across Europe can't afford to save any money

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Nearly a third (30%) of independent drivers, riders and couriers in the gig-economy across Europe have no savings, according to Collective Benefits, an insurance and benefits platform specifically for independent entrepreneurs and workers.

The London-based start-up, which aims to solve the protection gap for self-employed and independent workers, surveyed more than 10,000 respondents in the first half of 2021.

The company also found that almost half of the responses had experienced a claimable such as an accident, but of these only 12% had actually made a claim, while 69% of this group had a negative experience when claiming.

The research also revealed that beyond the 30% of independent drivers, riders and couriers have no savings, a further 58% of respondents had less than £1,500 in savings, a lower amount than the national average of £6,767.

As a result, independent workers are turning towards insurance protections to provide a financial safety net: the vast majority (83%) would be interested in sick pay, and 80% said they would be interested in accident and injury pay.

The findings have been announced after Collective Benefits analysed Office for National

Statistics data to reveal the true size of the UK’s independent workforce, including the self-employed, temporary employees and those on zero-hours contracts, at 6.6m people.

Both pieces of research come after the rapid growth of quick commerce and the digitisation of the hospitality industry in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Publicly-listed online food marketplaces, for example, have registered percentile growth in the three figures over the period of 2020 in the UK and Europe.

Collective Benefits is partnering with a series of leading companies in the space to make sure their drivers, couriers and riders are protected and have peace of mind whilst enjoying the flexibility that comes with independent work.

Anthony Beilin, co-founder and CEO of Collective Benefits, said: “The past year has shown how important delivery drivers, riders and couriers really are to us: during the pandemic they have rightly been recognised as key workers, helping boost our standards of living and keeping the economy moving.

“At Collective, we’re on a mission to close the protection gap currently faced by these , helping them stay physically, mentally and financially healthy, whatever life throws at them.

“However, our research reveals that a lot more needs to be done in this area, especially when it comes to these workers’ financial wellbeing.

"We’re currently partnering with a lot of on-demand businesses in mobility and logistics to help do exactly that. We believe in a model where platforms should be encouraged, not penalised, to provide a strong safety net of protections to their workers. In my view, that’s the only way we as a society can really make independent work, work for everyone.”


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