Mastercard (NYSE: MA) is addressing the gig economy and next-gen workers with the launch of the Inclusive Futures Project.
Mastercard Inclusive Futures Project for Gig Workers
The project brings together digital companies to specifically generate products and services for this workforce, which now includes a wide cross-section of the population. Everyone from unbanked and underbanked communities to people looking to supplement their income and full-time gig economy workers will all benefit from this initiative.
The gig economy is comprised of different types of workers, and the small businesses that hire them have specific needs. This has created an environment for a readily available workforce which can benefit both parties but can also create challenges as more people enter the space to earn a living.
In addressing the challenges, Craig Vosburg, Mastercard’s North America president, said in a press release, “Mastercard is in a great position to respond to the changes we’re seeing in our economy — to use our technology infrastructure, digital payments expertise and data and insights to introduce meaningful solutions that help our changing workforce prosper and our cities continue to flourish, all benefiting from a connected economy.”
Three Key Areas of the Inclusive Futures Project
In collaboration with participating digital companies, the project will be looking at the challenges this workforce faces with digital solutions, government services and smart cities.
The digital solutions will provide ways in which gig economy workers can get real-time payments for the services they deliver along with budget management tools. This particular part of the project is being carried out with the help of Care.com, — and Mastercard will provide its Assemble for Millennials and Mastercard Send APIs.
The government services portion of the project will bring together Mastercard and Square to provide educational workshops with municipalities in New Orleans and Cleveland focusing on financial literacy and access.
The smart cities initiative will create solutions for inclusive and sustainable urban economies by making transportation and other services more accessible to everyone.
The Gig Economy and Small Businesses
One in three Americans are now freelancers, including more than one-third of millennials. And small businesses are doing most of the hiring, an estimated 40 percent according to a study compiled by LinkedIn.
Understanding the needs of this workforce not only provides a more efficient working environment, but it can also create new business opportunities. The Inclusive Futures Project highlights the challenges and opportunities for companies hiring these workers.
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