Instead of better pay, Uber wants to offer drivers more jobs

Who needs benefits when you can cook or clean instead?

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Uber Works is the latest spinoff from the controversial ride-hailing company. Thankfully, it’s not a sign Uber’s getting into the coworking sector. Nope, instead, it’s like Uber… but for temp work, and it’s soon going to be extended to Uber drivers. We'd prefer they get better pay, job security, and benefits over having to find time for more gig work.

The company has been running a pilot Uber Works program in Chicago in recent months, but plans to extend it first to Miami, and then to additional cities next year, Bloomberg reports. The service has so far been used to find short-term staff for restaurants, warehouses, and hospitality businesses.

Don’t drive? No problem – Uber says Uber Works will roll out in additional cities next year, offering employment opportunities to people who don’t have the vehicles or driver’s licenses required to participate in Uber proper.

Uber’s evidently got high hopes for the initiative, with Andrey Liscovich, who heads the Uber Works project saying, “For us to invest in something, it needs to be on the order of ride-share in size, or even exceed it.”

A path to profitability? – Though Uber’s gotten into a slew of other businesses beyond ride-sharing, it’s still loss-making. If Uber Works succeeds, it could provide the profitability Uber so desperately needs to assuage investors’ concerns and reverse the poor performance of its stock since the company went public in May.

But there are plenty of other hurdles the embattled business will need to overcome first. It’ll have to demonstrate it can address the safety concerns highlighted in the safety report it released earlier this month. It’ll need to navigate California’s incoming law that requires contractors, like Uber’s drivers, to be treated as employees. And it’ll have to contend with London revoking its license to operate there.