By Ayush Sharma
That’s the number of registered driver partners in the Gojek ecosystem.
But, more importantly, the income we provide touches anywhere between 7–10 million people. What we do, impacts more people than we can truly see. And our driver partners are the bedrock on which Gojek’s social impact is built on. These saviours form the core of all that we do, make us ‘us’, and are the superpower who make us a SuperApp.
With great power comes great responsibility — Our responsibility to understand our partners well and serve them better. Our responsibility to help our partners achieve goals and alleviate pain points.
We have an entire team which is dedicated for this very purpose: The ‘Driver Income’ Team.
In this blog, we’ll talk about how empathy is drilled in our ethos by our founders, to serve our driver partners.
“How do we ensure our driver-partners are happy? Our drivers form the core of Gojek. They need safety and security for their families; they also have life aspirations. How can we win their hearts and grow with them?”
- Edy Tan, VP, Driver Income, Gojek
The word aspirations in Edy’s quote seems like a loose word, one we add for the sake of it, right? No. As I researched this story and spoke to people, I realised more about my own org. It was my own journey of understanding how much we truly care, and what makes Gojek so special.
We don’t just say we care, we act. Our actions and efforts are translated on ground. It’s what makes Gojek the phenomenon it is today.
The Driver Income team has four key responsibilities to our driver partners:
1. Managing the main source of income
The team ensures we have a healthy demand through the host of services we offer, and this demand is allocated fairly to all partners. Based on the demand and allocation, the team optimises price and incentives.
2. Creating new sources of revenue
To utilise a driver’s idle hours fully, the team comes up with ways to provide additional sources of income. This is done by providing additional tasks to driver partners. For example: Merchant verification & onboarding (where our driver partners double as data checking personnel and verify merchant partners), offline sales through GoPulsa & GoPay top-up, and monetising drivers’ physical & vehicle presence.
3. Lowering cost of living
Mobile data and fuel are the two most critical components for our driver partners to do their job efficiently. The team collaborates with telcos and fuel providers to get cheaper rates.
4. Enabling aspirations
The team provides protection for driver partners and their families through insurance, deals for recreational activities, and helps them secure loans for weddings, house, pilgrimage, etc.
Navigating the pandemic
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the Driver Income team was put through a trial by fire. As the demand went down, we spurred into action to protect our drivers from being severely impacted. It was imperative to move fast and develop frameworks to provide help. Here’s how we went about it:
1. Identify the most vulnerable
We first created an emergency fund for all drivers partners. This was started with older driver partners and driver partners with big families. Then, this fund was systematically rolled out to reach all our driver partners.
2. Partner with major local supermarkets and merchants, to provide food packages and meal vouchers
We created a dedicated budget, and enabled partnerships with local supermarkets to provide vouchers to our partners, which could be redeemed for food staples.
3. Partner with banks to provide micro loans with favourable financing conditions
We partnered with one of the largest banks in Indonesia to provide micro loans to our partners at a minimal interest rate and favourable repayment terms. All our partners can avail this loan after a check based on their credit history.
4. Partner with government and telco partners to provide telco expenses support
We partnered with the government and major operators to distribute funds through GoPulsa. This helped us to provide free data packages to driver partners.
5. Provide education scholarships to driver partners’ kids
The team rolled out a program to provide scholarships to the kids of our driver partners, as part of our commitment to improve the lives of our driver partner and their families.
6. Provide additional task to driver-partners to capitalise on idle time
With the decrease in usual demand, we got creative and went back to the whiteboard to figure out ways to provide our partners with new avenues to make money. This led to the inception of GoCek, an innovation to help driver partners earn additional income by serving as data checking personnel.
We also collaborated with different teams internally to identify tasks such as merchant KYC, merchant training, and cartography (to better understand parking fees).
We are extremely grateful and proud of the work that the Driver Income team has put out. The team has embodied our core values:
Becoming a scientist to come up with new innovative ways
Moving fast and fearlessly
Collaborating with compassion
Communicating with purpose
Practicing empathy through actions
Tough times have certainly made us tougher and united than ever before. Onwards and upwards. 💚
Click here to read more stories on how we build our #SuperApp. 💚
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