It’s no secret that contract labor has been thrust into the spotlight since the outbreak of COVID-19. Not only has the gig economy boomed, but talent flexibility has proven to be a “must-have” for many organizations around the world. The ability to ramp-up or pare-down the size of your workforce dependent on hiring ebbs and flows presents a valuable premise, one that has proven to be appealing to business leaders looking to drive leaner and more efficient operations.
Despite the attention that contract labor has been receiving in recent months, many people still don’t comprehend the purpose of a contingent workforce. I’m here to simplify this concept and illustrate the tremendous value that contract workers can bring to your organization.
What does the term “contingent workforce” mean?
Believe it or not, contingent workers are not actually employed by the company that they work for. Rather, these individuals work under a pre-determined contract or on a temporary, as-needed basis. Contract workers are critically important for organizations faced with pressing short-term needs. For example, if a company has an urgent project that needs to be completed, a contingent employee can be hired to assist with the assignment. Upon completion of the task, the worker is free to explore outside opportunities with other companies.
What are the advantages of maintaining a contingent workforce?
It can often be tedious and time-consuming – not to mention expensive – to manage and monitor your population of contingent workers. By outsourcing this segment of your workforce to a trusted staffing partner, your organization will be stripped of this organizational and administrative trouble. In terms of cost savings, you’ll no longer have to support your workers’ health insurance and other costly benefits. Plus, you’ll be awarded increased flexibility to evaluate your organizational hiring needs on a regular basis. Being able to quickly hire temporary employees to account for seasonal peaks or assist with pressing business undertakings will help to optimize operations while slashing your budget.
Can contingent workers be hired full-time?
Of course! If you’ve been impressed by a contract employee’s work and your organization has the capacity to bring them on in a full-time role, many staffing firms offer contract-to-direct conversions at no charge. The worker will possess an intimate understanding of your organization, thereby slashing the costs and burdens associated with employee onboarding and readiness training.
Do contingent workforces represent the future of work?
Since the outbreak of COVID-19, we’ve seen firsthand how unpredictability can be a business’s worst nightmare. For most organizations, long-term labor needs and future hiring swings can be tough to predict. By leveraging a population of contingent workers, however, companies can nimbly ramp up or scale down the size of their workforces without having to worry about troublesome layoffs, furloughs, or other tough employment decisions. Because of increased flexibility, added compliance benefits, and reduced costs that accompany the outsourcing of contract work, it is safe to assume that contingent employees represent the future of work.