What The Uberization Of Retail Might Actually Look Like

by MR Magazine Staff

This past holiday season, a friend of mine made some extra cash as a driver for Amazon. He described a process where he got some minimal training, downloaded an app, in a very Uber-like experience, searched for available shifts, signed up to accept shifts, and was directed where to go. He would pull up to the Amazon distribution center, load up his car with parcels, and then follow turn-by-turn directions provided by Amazon’s app, to deliver packages to front porches. He would accept shifts as 4-hour blocks, and deliver as many as 80-100 packages, sometimes in a space as small as one square mile. He estimated, after the costs to his car, that he made about $20/hour. As he described this work, I felt as though I was seeing how the “Uberization” of retail might actually work. I had not thought it would be possible, but whether a good thing or a bad thing (another thing I’m not sure about), I think this kind of gig-economy work may be coming to retail sometime soon. Read more at Forbes.