Uber Technologies Inc. is entering the more traditional contingent workforce staffing market with the rollout of its Uber Works industrial staffing app. For now, Uber Works is operating only in Chicago, and the company is working with staffing firms TalentBurst and TrueBlue Inc. Workers are classified as employees of those staffing firms.
“Uber Works app users can get detailed information about shifts they’re interested in, including information about gross pay, work location and skills, or required attire,” according to the post. “Uber Works also serves as a one-stop shop for all time-tracking needs, allowing users to clock in and out and log breaks.”
In order to get jobs, workers complete an I-9 form, undergo a background check and may be required to pass a skills assessment. Workers currently have a choice of two employers: TalentBurst or TrueBlue. Because they have a choice of being employed by one of two staffing firms, both of the staffing firms can list three reasons for workers to choose them.
The app connects workers with jobs in general labor, warehouses, customer service, cleaning, “front of house” (serving, bartending at restaurants and events) and “back of house” (cooks, dishwashers at restaurants). It will offer same-day pay.
Employers post a job, then Uber Works dispatches a pre-qualified worker. The app also has a two-way rating system for employers and workers.
The staffing firms will employ, pay and handle worker benefits.
Brad Talwar, founder and CEO of TalentBurst, said his company serves as an employer of record. Once a worker signs up with Uber Works, TalentBurst handles the background checks, I-9s and manages all things the worker needs as a W-2 employee. TalentBurst also has internal staff that onboards the workers before they are added to the Uber Works platform.
“We manage anything and everything that is needed for them to complete their job successfully on the Uber platform,” Talwar said. “We want to empower their success.”
TalentBurst has worked with Uber Works for less than a year on the pilot version of the program.
For its part, TrueBlue created a business venture called PeopleWorks to serve as an employer and payroll service provider for workers coming to it via Uber Works.
Uber is also working to get access to online classes for workers on the Uber Works platform in order to provide a path where they can improve their skills. It’s working with local organizations such as the YWCA Metropolitan Chicago to help support access to work for people across communities.