Irregular employment is proving unstoppable. Regions needs a model that works for everyone. That requires a new kind of market for hourly labor.

Our 5 takeaways for workforce professionals:


1) Meet Your Irregulars

About 20% of work-seekers in any region can’t commit to regular hours because of complexities in their life. Others want regularity but can’t get it.

New scheduling systems like WC8 can call staff in, and send them home, day-by-day, hour-by-hour, in line with each employer’s needs. Even in 2017, 41% of American’s hourly employees didn’t know next week’s hours or pay. They are scrabbling for hours elsewhere when not needed by a primary employer.

A surge in people seeking ad-hoc work has created opportunity for aggressive “gig work” platforms. They slash pay, see for example reporting on Shipt, Lyft, Uber, Doordash, Instacart, AmazonFlex, or TaskRabbit. They also mislead work-seekers, distort the market against workers, withhold data, systematically undermine regulation, and invest heavily to overturn worker rights.

This is a problem for any local economy. By disempowering non-standard workers, tech. firms have created pools of cheapened labor. That undermines jobs, an accelerating trend. → more

2) Systematic Support

In the 1930’s, staffing agencies were as exploitative as today’s “gig” platforms. Public agencies could have opted for whack-a-mole legislation to curb abuses. Instead, they created an alternative; public labor exchanges, now rebadged as American Job Centers.

When job-seeking moved online, so did the principle that public agencies need to provide infrastructure for a fair labor market. Every state workforce agency commissions its own all-sectors job-match system. Platforms like CalJobs, Employ Florida, or Indiana Career Connect compete with for-profit services such as

The Public Workforce System enjoys bipartisan support. It is beginning to extend services to taxpayers with complex lives who aren’t lucky enough to have regular availability for work.

These diverse individuals need a platform for all types of hourly labor across their region that is built around protections, control,  skilling, supportive interventions, progression, and pathways to full-time. Regionally, overheads of booking top-up labor need to fall so wages rise as workforce quality and alignment increase.

Our “GoodFlexi” platform delivering this emerged in UK government programs. → more


3) Implementation in your area

There are two categories of fluid work:

  • At-home freelancing: Designers and lawyers can pull projects off sites like, then complete them in their own time and chosen location.
  • Out-of-home: People whose skills equip them to work in shops, food outlets, care homes, building sites, or warehouses have specific places and times for their work.

Our focus is the second group. But big buyers of this labor use one-sided monopsony scheduling systems. They will resist a platform that empowers workers.

However, the biggest aggregated buyer of flexible labor in any region is government. Services like childcare, community health, Parks & Rec., street workers, school support staff, emergency response teams, and transportation deploy thousands of people at times of need. Channelling that demand through a local platform dedicated to economic growth, data gathering, and an inclusive labor market, can kickstart activity that entices the corporates.

We suggest a scoping exercise as a first step for any region. Our manual outlines who should be consulted, what they should be asked, and how viability of launch can be modeled. → more


4) Exploiting your platform

America’s workforce boards are driven by 6 performance metrics governing their federal funding. Those assume job-creation and retention as priorities. People who need work to fit around their complex lives aren’t served. Workforce directors increasingly accept this needs to change. Irregular workers merit support because:

  • Marginalization: Out-of-home irregular employment skews heavily towards communities of color, women and the lowest income households. Data and tools to underpin targeted interventions can provide support around personalized periods of work.
  • Labor shortages: Irregulars are the hidden workforce. They don’t show in the data, and aren’t enrolled for workforce services. But they are typically among your most resourceful residents because of the challenges they face. You want them visible for employers.
  • Economic growth: Bringing people in non-standard employment into the mainstream local labor market increases their income. It curtails the off-the-books economy locally.
  • Job conversion: As life circumstances change, many irregulars seek full time work. A platform with personalized pathways to jobs helps them out of irregularity.
  • Responsive public services: Community health, support for the unhoused, childcare, and other services benefit from inducted workers with lived experience who may themselves also receive support. Facilities like Peer Navigators can be particularly effective. → more


5) About us

The Beyond Jobs program is part of a non-profit that emerged from British government programs to support anyone marginalized in labor markets. We launched our platform with 20 city governments before being made a keystone of national government’s plans to overhaul welfare. As that wider project slowed, we offered the technology internationally.

Americanized with funding from foundations including Annie Casey, Kauffman, Walmart, Wells Fargo, Irvine, and Workers Lab. GoodFlexi is now also launched by public agencies in California. We are based within the Long Beach workforce board. After piloting in childcare, the city is expanding it across sectors.  That program won US Conference of Mayors’ prize for best community-led job development initiative in America. Priority in early 2024 is launch in Portland, Ore, with a focus on work/services for the unhoused.

We develop the technology required for sophisticated, locally controlled, all-sectors, hourly labor platforms. Our team work with diverse public agencies to disseminate operational knowledge. → more


Extending workforce services beyond jobs to also assist individuals with complex lives should be a priority. Systematic, sustainable, scalable, support has to start with the right kind of platform.

We work with public agencies, funders, educators, labor groups, and other stakeholders adapting to a post-Covid labor market.


.The Irregulars