Deliveroo drivers are to be given access to hundreds of online courses free of charge and the chance to obtain a new university degree as the company unveils its new diversity scheme.
Deliveroo has partnered with vocational training provider Open Classrooms to provide its workers with the courses, which it says suits the flexible hours its drivers work. Deliveroo drivers work on average 15 hours a week and many are students and carers.
The company has also announced a new scholarship scheme, which will be open to its riders only.
The courses, which include design, IT, marketing and project management, will be rolled out initially in the UK, France and Australia and will be available in English, French and Spanish.
Deliveroo founder and chief executive Will Shu said: “Lots of our riders are already currently studying, but there are others who might not have that opportunity so I wanted to offer that chance to every single one of our riders.
“Riders are at the heart of all we do and we want to provide more support for them – this is just one way we can make that happen.”
Relations between Deliveroo and its drivers have often been strained, with the latter protesting against pay structures and lack of employee benefits.
In November 2017, Deliveroo scored a victory when a UK employment body ruled that its workers were "self-employed" and therefore not able to access benefits such as holiday and sick pay and pension contributions.