More Into Side Hustles


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Singapore, June 8: In recent years, the economic landscape in Southeast Asia has undergone a significant transformation, prompting young individuals to seek additional income streams to secure their financial future.
According to a regional study targeting GenZs and Millennials across Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines, a staggering 95 percent of respondents agreed that having multiple sources of income was a necessity in today’s uncertain times.
While surviving on a single income was possible in the past, the global cost-of-living crisis and rising inflation have made it increasingly challenging to maintain a comfortable lifestyle.
The study, conducted in March 2023, revealed that Southeast Asians are driven by several factors when pursuing multiple income sources.
The primary motivations were to increase earnings and savings (64 percent), cope with the rising cost of living (62 percent), and achieve job security (47 percent).
The prevalence of economic uncertainty, further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, has made individuals wary of relying solely on a 9-to-5 job.
The pandemic served as a wake-up call, leaving many unemployed and struggling to make ends meet. As a result, Southeast Asians are seeking alternatives to diversify their income and protect their financial well-being.
Various avenues for supplementing income were identified in the study, with investing (21 percent), part-time jobs (18 percent), and gig jobs (18 percent) emerging as the top choices across Southeast Asia.
The rise of the gig economy and the preference for flexible work arrangements over traditional office jobs have contributed to these trends.
However, preferences for specific side hustles vary based on cultural values and a country’s financial landscape.
Singaporeans, benefiting from a booming financial market, showed a greater inclination toward investing (34 percent), while starting a business was more popular in Indonesia (32 percent), leveraging the country’s substantial SME sector.
The findings emphasize the need for employers and policymakers to adapt to the evolving needs of the workforce.
Employers must recognize that employees may require additional income sources to support themselves and their families, viewing this as an opportunity for skill diversification and enhanced experience.
The traditional 9-to-5 office job is no longer sufficient for the average salaryman in Southeast Asia, as the rising cost of living calls for alternative income streams.
The study, conducted by Milieu Insight in collaboration with local partners, surveyed 3,000 respondents aged 16-42, with an equal representation of 500 respondents from each of the six countries.
The results shed light on the changing attitudes and priorities of young Southeast Asians as they navigate the complex economic landscape and strive for financial security in an uncertain future.
As the world continues to evolve, the pursuit of multiple income sources is becoming increasingly prevalent across Southeast Asia, reflecting a growing desire for stability and economic resilience among the younger generation.

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