Tech Tuesday: New app allows businesses to hire temporary, on-demand workers

Tech Tuesday

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Across the nation and even here in Michigan you may have noticed help-wanted signs in the windows of many businesses.

There is a pandemic-induced labor shortage, but a new app aims to solve this problem.

CEO of Lula’s Garden Liraz Birnbaum says getting holiday help during the pandemic worker shortage is a challenge.

So now, instead of placing a help wanted advertisement she orders insta-workers on an app.

“Once you put the credit card on the app, it just charges automatically,” said Birnbaum.

“Every worker has a schedule that meets their needs and that schedule can change from week to week,” said Instawork co-founder and CEO Sumir Meghani.

Meghani found Instawork in 2016.

“We’re economic opportunity at the touch of a button. A worker can create a profile, get to work within a day, the whole workforce changed how they work during the pandemic. They’re not just looking for better jobs or higher pay, they’re looking for more flexible work,” Meghani said.

That appealed to Chester Lemon, who lost his job during the pandemic. Lemon has a selection of shifts and pay.

“I can comfortably say I am my own boss,” he said.

One day he’s working at a clothing designer warehouse, and the next, he’s able to work a concert.

Lemon says the best part is he’s getting paid immediately. With over 1.5 million workers in 25 U.S. cities, the company can also provide real-time economic insight.

Ever since April of this year, wages on the app have increased an average of 20%.

“We found that about half of our professionals aren’t willing to work for less than $15 an hour,” Meghani said.

Like most Instaworkers, Lemon is an independent contractor with no benefits or overtime.
He says considering going back to a regular nine to five job isn’t going to be an easy choice.

“It’s going to be hard right now because I’ve gotten so used to this. You can just make money tonight, tomorrow. Any time you feel like it.”

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