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My calculated net hourly pay after expenses is

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Les Ants,

I often hear a lot of complaints on here about what the Ants are earning. I'm here to dispel those myths using evidenced-based empirical research as opposed to the hit pieces run by often left-leaning news outlets.

Linked is a New York Times piece that summarizes and attempts to discredit the 136 page Cornell piece that is also linked. The study was conducted using data from both UBER and Lyft. This is the most rigorous study I have seen on the topic and the methodologies are sound. It adjusts earnings in ways that I have been advocating for for some time.

For instance, it nets out the time that ants are running both apps, ie. if you are running both apps for an hour, it counts it as an hour, not two. This is a huge adjustment for the denominator. It also only includes incremental costs and excludes things like insurance, which the Ant would be paying for regardless. It also deducts depreciation due to the aging of the vehicle, which again would happen regardless of Anting. It includes depreciation from mileage (note that the diminution in value of a vehicle has two components - the age and the mileage). The most controversial exclusion is wait time when not actively driving or en route to a pickup. If you believe that time should be included, you can deduct $2.50 from the levels below.

After applying this thoughtful analysis, the researchers concluded that part-time Ants, which they peg as 85% of the population, make $23.25/hour AFTER expenses or $46,500 annually based on 40 hrs. a week for 50 weeks a year. Full-time Ants make $17.40/hour or $34,800 annually. Many recent college graduates are making between $39-$48k as illustrated by the table below.

For a profession (Anting) that requires no education and very little skill, it appears that the Ants are being overcompensated.


View attachment 605557




Toodles,

De La Creme
I'm gonna check out this "study" and see which market was used and what time period (Covid or pre-Covid)

I'm gonna check it out of curiosity by I don't need to check it to know that if the numbers you posted ($23 per hour after expenses) are what the study claims, it's a total lie, PERIOD.

Common sense dictates that's a total lie.

There's no way in hell that a job that pays that kind of money AND provides flexible hours would ever have a horrendous 98% yearly turnover rate. NO FREAKING WAY.

$23 per hour AFTER expenses is good money, and when coupled with flexible hours makes a winning combination that people would flock to and STAY.

But Uber can't keep drivers for more than a few months.

Either your numbers are bogus and/or the study is bogus.
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
I'm gonna check out this "study" and see which market was used and what time period (Covid or pre-Covid)

I'm gonna check it out of curiosity by I don't need to check it to know that if the numbers you posted ($23 per hour after expenses) are what the study claims, it's a total lie, PERIOD.

Common sense dictates that's a total lie.

There's no way in hell that a job that pays that kind of money AND provides flexible hours would ever have a horrendous 98% yearly turnover rate. NO FREAKING WAY.

$23 per hour AFTER expenses is good money, and when coupled with flexible hours makes a winning combination that people would flock to and STAY.

But Uber can't keep drivers for more than a few months.

Either your numbers are bogus and/or the study is bogus.
The study was done in Seattle. The study also notes that 85% of drivers are part-time. If 85% are doing it on the side, it’s not surprising turnover is so high. Also it take very little effort to start or quit. Traditional jobs have many more frictions in that regard, which reduces turnover.

For all the folks calling it BS, why don’t you post your own calculation, assuming you’ve done it.
 

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The study was done in Seattle. The study also notes that 85% of drivers are part-time. If 85% are doing it on the side, it’s not surprising turnover is so high. Also it take very little effort to start or quit. Traditional jobs have many more frictions in that regard, which reduces turnover.

For all the folks calling it BS, why don’t you post your own calculation, assuming you’ve done it.
Why was Seattle chosen? Why didn’t they base the study on Cleveland, Detroit, Memphis, Dallas or Miami instead?
 

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I always felt like Uber was paying me more than the minimum I would be happy with. No one ever does what I say but I tried to tell you ants that Uber rains gold down upon your undeserving little head if you woumd just stay on the clock the entire 12 hours. I was stacked with rides that last hour and always ended fairly and surprisingly close to home. But let’s be honest in that when you live in down town everything is already close and anything that’s not close desperately wishis it were close. Really there would be nights when I hadn’t made enough to even have two wooden buffalo nickels to rub together for warmth and then those last two hours so like from the end of my 9th hour until quitting time was just like, here, surge, gold, yours, money, good job, more money. That’s how I pulled down $580 in one night a few times but it’s impossible to say anything on here without sounding pretentious and y’all think I’m an ******* which is true but y’all think that’s reson enough not to listen.

Oh my god I can’t believe I’m saying this again but if you ants don’t go look up the thread by yours truly entitled, “Three days in april” or “Three days in Avril” and start doing that I’m going to have a meltdown of some sort. DO IT NOW!
 

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Surely you can't be serious.
Why are calling him Shirley? (ok bad Airplane joke but couldn't resist)
but I'm still interested in why you believe they have been deceitful and unethical
2 examples of each.
Deceitful
  • Lower rates = more money: The spin communication for rate cuts that would result in "more money for drivers".:LOL:
  • You asked for more predictable income and we listened: The spin communication for eliminating the multiplier surge and replacing it with a flat surge "so drivers could more easily calculate their earnings".:ROFLMAO:
Unethical
Guess it's a personal judgement on what is unethical.
  • Drivers in California can set their own rates: Gone quickly after AB5 passage. Classic bait and switch.
  • Uber is merely a "payment processor": Outright lie the IRS let's them get away with.
Everyone pays taxes, so I think figuring taxes is not too meaningful and distracts from the larger poin
As a Financial adviser you know the old saying, "It's not what you make it's what you keep". Net is extremely meaningful.
I care about expenses. Thus I calculate my profitability by dollars per mile, not dollars per hour. So, excluding wait time is not a problem for me.
Smart, very smart. For years I advocated keeping a spreadsheet and focusing on Revenue per Mile instead of per hour. I used to get pummeled on here for that and finally gave up mentioning it. Every smart businessman knows that is the key to understanding profits and developing a good operating strategy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
Why are calling him Shirley? (ok bad Airplane joke but couldn't resist)

2 examples of each.
Deceitful
  • Lower rates = more money: The spin communication for rate cuts that would result in "more money for drivers".:LOL:
  • You asked for more predictable income and we listened: The spin communication for eliminating the multiplier surge and replacing it with a flat surge "so drivers could more easily calculate their earnings".:ROFLMAO:
Unethical
Guess it's a personal judgement on what is unethical.
  • Drivers in California can set their own rates: Gone quickly after AB5 passage. Classic bait and switch.
  • Uber is merely a "payment processor": Outright lie the IRS let's them get away with.

As a Financial adviser you know the old saying, "It's not what you make it's what you keep". Net is extremely meaningful.

Smart, very smart. For years I advocated keeping a spreadsheet and focusing on Revenue per Mile instead of per hour. I used to get pummeled on here for that and finally gave up mentioning it. Every smart businessman knows that is the key to understanding profits and developing a good operating strategy.
I appreciate the response. If those examples are the worst of UBER's infractions, I don't know that I would peg them as particularly deceitful or unethical. Some of them are debateable. For instance, the last pay adjustment that the Ants here proclaimed as a pay cut was actually an increase for any ride that averages less than 23mph, which is the vast majority. The Ants don't care about facts though, it's more fun to come on here and complain.

Everyone's tax situation is vastly different, so applying a blank assumption makes no sense. I also provided college grad salaries that are not net of taxes, so I am still comparing apples to apples.

I think tracking income per mile and per hour makes sense. If one is working many hours just sitting around, the per mile doesn't capture that. You could have a great per mile but need to be online for 16 hours a day to make it. Most comparable jobs also pay hourly, so it's helpful for comparing across opportunities.
 

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If one is working many hours just sitting around, the per mile doesn't capture that. You could have a great per mile but need to be online for 16 hours a day to make it.
And thus the huge gap in the needs of part time supplemental income folks and full timers. I supplement income and only work prime time busy hours so the revenue per mile is strategically important to figure out the best cherry picking strategies in a busy market. Full timers must work slower hours as well and face more pressure to take lower offers however self defeating that may be to profitability. This is no different from any business deciding wether or not to sacrifice margin for volume.
If those examples are the worst of UBER's infractions,
Didn't say they were the worst, just provided examples.
I think tracking income per mile and per hour makes sense.
I agree tracking BOTH makes sense. The problem is that most only track hourly and miss out on great data that can give actionable strategy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #50 ·
Didn't say they were the worst, just provided examples.
Feel free to provide examples of their most egregious behaviors. My issue is most folks perpetuate this big bad corporation myth when it comes to UBER instead of providing substantive information to work with - like in this thread. Lots of claims that the study is wrong, but no good explanations for why. Also lots of claims that drivers are underpaid, but no good explanations for why.
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
Feel free to provide examples of their most egregious behaviors. My issue is most folks perpetuate this big bad corporation myth when it comes to UBER instead of providing substantive information to work with - like in this thread. Lots of claims that the study is wrong, but no good explanations for why. Also lots of claims that drivers are underpaid, but no good explanations for why.
Maybe a helpful analog would be a comparison to what other drivers make in other industries. What do full-time drivers make in similar industries? My point was that if you are making the same as many college grads, maybe you aren't underpaid, maybe you just want more.
 

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Feel free to provide examples of their most egregious behaviors.
  • Withholding non-controversial information from the driver - I should be able to check beyond a passengers rating, but also know how long the account has been active, and how many rides, how many 'incident reports' this user has on their record. It would also be nice to see the % of rides that each passenger account tips. Uber/Lyft's default position is to withhold information from the driver, even if that information is trivial. This is EGREGIOUS if they want to call us 'independant contractors.'
  • Hiding Buttons and Features as a mindgame - Going Offline requires a submenu and an extra tap, to discourage drivers from flipping apps.
  • Only 2 Destination Mode active per day - It's called "RIDE SHARING" which means I should always be able to pick where I'm heading and only take passengers in that direction.
  • Obfuscating information - As an independant contractor, I should get all the information on the ping screen. Pick Up distance/time; Total Ride Distance/Time; Approximate payment amount.
  • Penalizing cancels - My car, my choice. I should not be penalized for cancelling, unless the algorithm picks up that a driver is doing so by race or religion or gender. Lyft nags their driver pool all the time, just to screw with them with a 'sword of damacles' deactivation implied. This is employee abuse.
  • Hiding why I was downrated, or information on passenger complaints - While passenger and driver privacy is paramount, drivers should know the basic details of why they were 1*'d or account-suspended, so they can improve, or at least register a case for a false complaint.
  • More Transparent deactivation investigations - Into impaired driving complaints, sexual innappropriateness. It should not be a 'Kafka-esque nightmare' why you have been deplatformed. But Uber and Lyft make it so.
  • Customer Support Representatives - These Uber employees are so un-empowered that they are almost 100% useless at most problems. Combined with the fact that they are not even located on the continent which they service, they have trouble even making a report for escalation. It's like UBER just wants the illusion of driver support without actually bothering to do it well.
 

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Its so funny all this bullshit to prove what. i will sum it up rideshare(AKA REAL TAXI)
DRIVER must have a car-insurance- clean car- inspected car- proper year car- gas in his gas tank- cash in his pocket for tire repairs-tolls- risk of being hurt or knock off the job due to an accident.
you defend these companys when you dont drive . you dont see thier rake%% they take, so you dont really know. your guessing.
now ant A - has all of this for what $17 an hour. no sss- no workmans comp if he breaks his arm.
ant B works 40 hours at burger world- brings nothing to work earns $15 an hour. complete
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
Its so funny all this bullshit to prove what. i will sum it up rideshare(AKA REAL TAXI)
DRIVER must have a car-insurance- clean car- inspected car- proper year car- gas in his gas tank- cash in his pocket for tire repairs-tolls- risk of being hurt or knock off the job due to an accident.
you defend these companys when you dont drive . you dont see thier rake%% they take, so you dont really know. your guessing.
now ant A - has all of this for what $17 an hour. no sss- no workmans comp if he breaks his arm.
ant B works 40 hours at burger world- brings nothing to work earns $15 an hour. complete
Their rake %, as you call it, is public information that is updated quarterly. Sure you can claim it is fudged, but that is a baseless claim and I doubt they would be committing fraud to provide a fake number.
 

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Their rake %, as you call it, is public information that is updated quarterly. Sure you can claim it is fudged, but that is a baseless claim and I doubt they would be committing fraud to provide a fake number.
You fail to grasp the INFORMATIONAL ASYMMETRY that UBER/LYFT take advantage of to keep their drivers 'anting' on low-information. It's a form of control, bordering on abuse, because it is passive-agressive, and fundamentally dishonest:

Basically, it is vile.

If you want happy workers, empower them. If you want indentured servitude, your employees (ahem, contractors) will hate you. Worse, they will slowly provide worse and worse service to the platforms customers, because of a perceived injustice, and that will destroy the reputation of the service. I believe the classic phrase is: Sabotage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #56 ·
  • Withholding non-controversial information from the driver - I should be able to check beyond a passengers rating, but also know how long the account has been active, and how many rides, how many 'incident reports' this user has on their record. It would also be nice to see the % of rides that each passenger account tips. Uber/Lyft's default position is to withhold information from the driver, even if that information is trivial. This is EGREGIOUS if they want to call us 'independant contractors.'
  • Hiding Buttons and Features as a mindgame - Going Offline requires a submenu and an extra tap, to discourage drivers from flipping apps.
  • Only 2 Destination Mode active per day - It's called "RIDE SHARING" which means I should always be able to pick where I'm heading and only take passengers in that direction.
  • Obfuscating information - As an independant contractor, I sould get all the information on the ping screen. Pick Up distance/time; Total Ride Distance/Time; Approximate payment amount.
  • Penalizing cancels - My car, my choice. I shouldn't be penalized for cancelling, unless the algorithm picks up that a driver is doing so by race or religion or gender. Lyft nags their driver pool all the time, just to screw with them with the 'sword of damacles' deactivation applied. This is employee abuse.
  • Hiding why I was downrated, or information on complaint - While passenger and driver privacy is paramount. Drivers should know the basic details of why they were 1*'d so they can improve, or at least register a case for a false complaint.
  • More Transparent deactivation investigations - Into impaired driving complaints, sexual innappropriateness. It should not be a 'Kafka-esque nightmare' why you have been deplatformed. But Uber and Lyft make it so.
  • Customer Support Representatives - These Uber employees are so un-empowered that they are almost 100% useless at most problems. Combined with the fact that they are not even located on the continent which they service, they have trouble even making a report for escalation. It's like UBER just wants the illusion of driver support without actually bothering to do it well.
Again, these are all things that you may like or want, but not sure any rise to the level of deceit or immoral. Everyone complains about their job. How many people have an absolutely perfect job, where they receive anything their mind could imagine?
 

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Again, these are all things that you may like or want, but not sure any rise to the level of deceit or immoral. Everyone complains about their job. How many people have an absolutely perfect job, where they receive anything their mind could imagine?
If that is your glib answer, then we are done here. I gave you serious issues, and you dismiss them all in 3 sentences? Sheesh.
The above are simply the 'withholds' by the platforms.
There are things the platforms could do to make their driver pool very happy with the job, and probably offer better customer service to the core customer base. I outlined them here some years ago: 5 Features For The LYFT/UBER App That Would Enhance Both...

Few have been considered or seriously implemented. Lyft/Uber have put most of their energy into disempowering the drivers, and paying them less, while pocketing more for their shareholders, after their respective IPOs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
If that is your glib answer, then we are done here. My lord.
It's not glib, it's reality. I understand those are all things you would like to see changed. My point is that in any job, you have to deal with circumstances that are not to your liking. This is not peculiar to UBER or Lyft.
 

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It's not glib, it's reality. I understand those are all things you would like to see changed. My point is that in any job, you have to deal with circumstances that are not to your liking. This is not peculiar to UBER or Lyft.
I understand what you are saying, but to whole-cloth dismiss my eariler points is both facile and insulting. You are not engaging in conversation, you are whimsically waving your hand like an boorish-aristocrat. This is a discussion board, and you are making broad proclaimations.
 

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Smart, very smart. For years I advocated keeping a spreadsheet and focusing on Revenue per Mile instead of per hour. I used to get pummeled on here for that and finally gave up mentioning it. Every smart businessman knows that is the key to understanding profits and developing a good operating strategy.
There's no perfect metric, but for "gig" worker drivers, dollars per hour is the best all-around metric for determining whether or not it's worth doing this job.

Time is money as the cliche says, but time also has value in other ways as well, such as time spent with my family, and if I'm gonna sacrifice family time for this job, I expect the dollars to be worth the sacrifice. Uber NEVER wants drivers to focus on time. They want drivers to focus on a DOLLAR NUMBER per shift and per week.

Relying on dollars per mile (basically you're referring to profit margins) to tell us whether or not this job is worth doing is too limiting and misleading to be a good overall indicator.

Dollars per mile as a metric has its place as PART of the overall picture, but by itself it doesn't tell the whole story. Dollars per hour, which factors in dollars per mile comes much closer to telling the whole story.

In other words, a poor dollars per hour metric will usually be reflected in poor dollars per hour, but high dollars per mile doesn't necessarily equate to high dollars per hour.

A driver crawling his way thru DC gridlock may be operating at high dollars per mile and a high profit margin but end up with very poor earnings due to the LACK of miles driven. His hourly rate will be LOW in spite of high dollars per mile and high profit margin.
 
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