Gorillas 'Project Ace' rider work schedule automation
Occurred: October 2021
Attempts by German grocery delivery service Gorillas to intensify work schedules and get delivery riders to fulfill more orders is contributing to worker discontent, strikes, and firings.
Gorillas 'Project Ace' uses an algorithm to calculate the times in which most workers are needed, demands shorter, more irregular shifts, and ignores the eleven hour rest time mandated under law.
Gorillas describes itself as a 'counter-model to the gig economy'. Unlike some of its competitors, it employs its riders and warehouse staff. But wages are low, salaries can be paid late, safety is poor, and the probationary period is a full six months - the maximum allowed under German law.
Furthermore, Gorillas workers have limited access to management, and 'Rider Support', which is supposed to take care of employee concerns, has no telephone number and, according to employees, leaves emails unanswered for days.
Founded in Germany in 2020, Gorillas is been valued at over EUR 1 billion and operates in cities across France, Italy, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
Over 350 employees are said to have been fired for striking. The company has been subject to multiple employee strikes and blockades in its home market.
Purpose: Automate work scheduling
Technology: Scheduling algorithm
Issue: Accuracy/reliability; Fairness
Transparency: Governance; Complaints/appeals