Is a contingent workforce the new normal workforce ?
Contingent workers work for an employer on a non-permanent basis and can be freelancers, independent contractors or temporary contract workers. The use of contingent workers has been rising due to changes in the economy, seasonal talent needs and skill shortages in specific industries or locations. Especially due to the high levels of instability that appeared in the job market during and after the recent financial crisis, the use of temporary workers spiked. But even now that the economy is picking up once again, there appears to be no stopping the growth of temporary employment. With over 1.6 million people on temporary contracts in the United Kingdom, contingent workers already account for a substantial part of the total workforce. Over the coming years, the number of temporary workers in any business is only expected to rise. We might follow America, where some media have already predicted that a contingent workforce could soon become ‘the new normal’.
So, how does this shift affect temporary recruitment?
Workers are more mobile, more digital and more connected. And they are far more flexible than ever before. This has initiated a big change in attitude from the world of temporary recruitment. The business still evolves about getting the right people in the right roles, but getting these people in the right locations, at the right times has become equally as important.
It’s also no longer viable to recruit for every role in isolation. Negotiating separate deals with individuals or agencies, relying on a range of separate management solutions, is a thing of the past. Instead, more and more organisations realise that what they require is a total workforce management solution that can help control labour costs, improve compliance and increase workforce productivity.
How can recruiters prepare for the future?
Now that more and more professionals are adopting a contingent career path, developing a temporary workforce may soon be the only way for employers and recruiters to effectively address the skill shortages in the workplace. There is currently a big drive in recruitment to find a way of dealing with the challenges this will create. One example of this is the Contingent Workforce Summit 2015 in Amsterdam later this month, where recruiters can discuss the strategies they are looking to implement and attend workshops in topics such as Compliance and Best Practices in Managing a Contingent Workforce.
What is clear to see is that, in order to deal with the dynamic developments of the modern workforce, employers and recruiters will need a total workforce solution, along with solid software, to help them streamline their administration, saving both money and time.
Having a well-run and effective strategy for temporary recruitment in place is what will allow employers to take advantage of the skills and flexibility contingent workers can offer, and help them stay ahead of the competition.
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