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Self-employment update: Innovation, happiness and the ‘gig’ economy

Monday, November 09, 2015

Last week, ICA’s Executive Director, Ken Phillips, wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Turnbull which was published in Business Spectator. It was about the PM’s desire for an innovation society. Ken said small business innovation is in trouble because of the Tax Office and other matters. He said that there are two tasks:

  • Give the Small Business Ombudsman genuine dispute review powers, and
  • Clean up the way the Tax Office treats small/micro business people.  
Also last week, Robert Gottliebsen reminded the government that it needed to move on requiring big superannuation funds to disclose what they are doing with other people’s money.  The sometime non-existent disclosure by some big super funds is one of the principal reasons that self-employed people prefer having their own Self-Managed Super Funds.

And we have more evidence  that self-employed people are happier than employees. This has been evident for more than a decade.

This latest ‘happiest’ report comes from the UK. It should be read in conjunction with this report which shows that just three years ago Iraqis were more optimistic about doing business than people in the UK. That’s now changed dramatically.

But what’s really moving fast is the ‘gig’ economy. You know. It’s all the Uber, TaskRabbit, Upwork businesses that don’t employ anyone but rather ‘connect’ workers with people needing their services. The UK Telegraph says that politics isn’t ready!  Too right! The Victorian government has just launched another of those Inquiries we’ve seen before on ‘insecure work’. It starts from the assumption that anyone without a full-time, permanent job is ‘insecure’. In fact we’d argue that most often full-time ‘secure’ work is a myth and is itself the source of insecurity. We’ll put in a submission!


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