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Fidelity International: self-employed and gig economy workers

An insight into self-employed work and life in the gig economy, including concerns and future financial security.

• For the majority of people working in self-employment and the gig economy, their choice of work is about control: control over work/life balance, working hours, type of work, and location. This is true across different ages and types of work. For instance, 92% of self-employed respondents say that having control over their work/life balance is an important consideration in explaining their decision to be self-employed. The same number- 92% – say the same about having control over their work.

• One in five respondents working in the gig economy consider themselves as ‘struggling’ financially (22%) and are more likely to say this than those in employment (15%) or self-employment (17%)

• Young self-employed respondents are more concerned about all aspects of their employment compared to older age groups. For example, while 50% of self-employed people aged 55+ report being concerned about irregularity of income or unpredictable finances, more than seven in ten 18-34 year olds report the same (73%).

• For one in three self-employed people and a similar number of people in gig work, contributing to a pension is not a priority: 32% of self-employed people say that contributing towards a pension is not at all or not very important (33% of gig workers).

Date Published: 15/05/2018

Categories: Economy | UK

Client: Fidelity International


ComRes interviewed a total of 3285 working adults across the UK.

• 1311 ‘employed’ (by someone else or an organisation), and representative of the employed UK workforce.

• 1000 ‘self-employed’ (on a consistent basis), and representative of the self-employed UK workforce.

• 974 ‘gig workers’ (see next page for definition) with a spread across age, gender and regions.

The research was conducted online between the 24th November and 18th December 2017.

  1. Fidelity-International-Self-Employed-and-Gig-Work-Research_March_2018 7 MB.