The survey reveals:
- Nine in ten (91%) drivers say they are “very/somewhat satisfied” driving with Uber while 89% would “recommend driving with Uber to others interested in driving”. 92% also state that Uber is a “good company to work with” and just 18% would prefer to be working with another taxi or minicab company.
- 94% of drivers said they “joined Uber because I wanted to be my own boss and choose my own hours”, with just 6% saying they “joined Uber because I couldn’t find other work”.
- When asked whether they would rather remain self-employed or be classified as a worker or employee of Uber, 80% of drivers say they would prefer to stay as an independent contractor.
- 93% agree that they feel “in control of when I drive” with just 4% disagreeing. 84% say they feel “in control of which trips I take” with just 12% disagreeing.
- Almost nine in ten (88%) believe that “Uber has improved things for drivers” over the last 12 months, with just 6% disagreeing.
- The most popular new feature introduced by the company in recent months was paid waiting time (which 86% described as positive), followed by driver destinations (78% positive) and in-app tipping (75% positive). However, almost one in five (18%) were not aware of the new tipping feature, while 44% said they had not heard of the discounted illness and injury cover available through Uber’s partnership with IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed).
Other findings of the poll include:
- Half (50%) of drivers say that since using the app their income has increased with just 11% saying it has decreased. Six in ten (61%) say their ability to “balance work with life” has improved since driving with Uber, with only 7% saying it has worsened.
- More than four in five (82%) drivers say Uber is their main source of income with 10% saying it tops up other sources of income and 8% saying it is one of a few different main sources of income.
- Almost two-thirds (65%) of drivers have been using the app for more than a year – with 28% using it for two or more years. More than half of drivers (52%) plan to continue driving with Uber for more than 2 years, while a third (34%) said they did not know.
- Before signing up to drive with Uber, less than a third (31%) of drivers said their main source of income was from driving a taxi or minicab, while 39% were employed full-time in a different sector, 15% were self-employed, 9% worked part-time in a different sector and 4% were unemployed.
- Just one in seven (14%) drive a set number of hours, with two-fifths (40%) deciding how many hours to drive depending on what else they have going on and 32% setting a goal for the total amount they want to earn in a given day, week or month. 14% say they decide to drive on the spur of the moment.
Johnny Heald, Managing Director of ORB International, said:
“While Uber has been in the headlines for the past few days, we’ve heard little about the 40,000 drivers who could be impacted by the licence refusal. Our poll shows that four in five drivers rely on Uber as their main source of income. They also value the flexibility of choosing when and where they drive. When asked whether they’d prefer to remain self-employed or become a worker or employee of Uber, the overwhelming majority want to continue being their own boss.
Most drivers also recognise the improvements Uber has made over the last year with new features like paid waiting time and in-app tipping. However, the company still has work to do with more than four in ten drivers unaware of the discounted illness and injury cover announced earlier this year.”
Results tables available here – ORB International Uber Driver Poll 2017