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On Demand Businesses 101

Ikea Acquires Gig Economy Startup TaskRabbit

In a fabulous move from Ikea, they acquired TaskRabbit, on-demand platform for hiring people to do everything from build furniture to stand in line for you at the stores during a sale. From a customer perspective, it makes perfect sense why Ikea would want TaskRabbit. Ikea — the Swedish furniture maker that made revenue of over $35 Billion last year is continuously is trying to improve products and services to make customers’ lives a little bit easier. TaskRabbit is known to be the on-demand handyperson startup with 60,000 workers listed for jobs. TaskRabbit was started by husband and wife team Kevin and Leah Busque and raised $50 million dollars since its inception.

“In a fast-changing retail environment, we continuously strive to develop new and improved products and services to make our customers’ lives a little bit easier. Entering the on-demand, sharing economy enables us to support that,” Ikea chief Jesper Brodin said in a statement to recode. “We will be able to learn from TaskRabbit digital expertise, while also providing Ikea customers additional ways to access flexible and affordable service solutions to meet the needs of today’s customer.”

Adding Value to customers lives.

In case of Ikea, the value-add is simple and obvious. The purchase of TaskRabbit was fueled by Ikea’s need to further bolster its digital customer service capabilities to better compete with rivals likes Amazon, which has stepped up its home goods and installation offerings. The purchase is Ikea’s first step into the on-demand platform space.

TaskRabbit had already struck a pilot partnership with Ikea around furniture assembly in the United Kingdom. It also had marketed its gig workers’ ability to put together Ikea items in the U.S. and elsewhere.

The gig economy should be part of every company’s growth strategy.

How can we lean on the gig economy to make customers’ lives easier and better?

Pay for skills

The access to top talent is now fast and affordable. Being resourceful is on the top of the list for all business owners, small and big. Making do with what you have and keeping expenses to a minimum is key to growing your business. By jumping into the gig economy, you no longer have to spend hours trying to solve problems that are beyond your skills.

Save Time

Thanks to the gig economy, and its new technology, you now have instant access to a large pool of talent. Finding the right person doesn’t take arduous hours away from your business. Besides, there is a reduction in amount of paperwork and time spent interviewing. You can find highly skilled workers who can hit the ground running as soon as their shift starts.

Seasonal spikes? No longer a problem

This means business will be able to manage the non-peak seasons with a smaller core group of staff. As a result, the business can reduce employment costs. Keeping staff on books year-round can be a struggle if you are in an industry that sees a seasonal spike. But with gig economy that doesn’t have to be the case anymore

The trend toward a gig economy has definitely begun and there are a number of forces behind the rise in short-term jobs. The digital age we now live in, for one, means the workforce is increasingly mobile and work can be done from anywhere, effectively decoupling jobs and locations. This is a brilliant move from Ikea we can all learn from.

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