The New York Times article A Push to Give Steadier Shifts to Part-Timers covers the growing opposition to the practice of rrequiring workers to be “on call” at short notice or scheduling them for shifts and then sending them home if business looks light.
The issue is nonstandard work schedules makes life much more difficult, especially for those with children. Key quote:
The actions reflect a growing national movement — fueled by women’s and labor groups — to curb practices that affect millions of families, like assigning just one or two days of work a week or requiring employees to work unpredictable hours that wreak havoc with everyday routines like college and child care.
This shift to a "just in time" workforce is happening because of the rapid growth of labormetrics, which is the use of software and analytical tools to analyze, track and improve work methods and performance.
Labormetrics systems allow businesses to better match the need for employees with business demand. This cuts costs and improve efficiency, but it also results in employees having more varied work schedules and often fewer hours.
Labormetrics also allows firms to shift business risk to employees. This is yet another example of the broader trend of risk management shifting from institutions to individuals, a very important trend we cover in the Intuit 2020 report.
It also increases economic uncertainty for those who are on call. We consider growing economic uncertainty to be a major driver of change in today's economy. We'll have more on this topic over the coming months.