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Contingent Workers: Bridging the Skills Gap | Workforce 2020 Oxford Economics Research / CareerBuilder

SB_EnterpriseZone_slide_934wTalent acquisition, involves strategic and executive level functions such as developing overall employee engagement, talent resourcing, succession planning, contingent labor management, on-boarding, retention, employment branding, and workforce optimization.

Catherine Hess of recruiter.com, explores the current skills gap, particularly those in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) that are finding it incredibly difficult to find qualified talent. Across the nation, many employers, including those in healthcare and manufacturing, are similarly experiencing difficulties in hiring.

According to CareerBuilder, approximately 34 percent of companies are experiencing losses in revenue as a direct result of an inability to hire top talent. To combat the problems caused by the skills gap, many employers have begun to hire contingent workers.

Contingent workers are often referred to as freelancers, independent contractors, or temporary contract workers. This segment of the workforce is rapidly growing, in part because today’s workers crave more autonomy than traditional full-time employment allows.

According to the Workforce 2020 research from Oxford Economics, as many as 51 percent of organizations around the globe intend to hire contingent workers in some form in 2016. While this new model of work brings many benefits, it has also challenged the ways in which organization understand talent acquisition, talent management, and employee engagement.

If your organization is considering hiring contingent workers to help soften the blow of the skills gap, consider taking the following steps:

Partner With an Managed Service Provider

Managed service providers, or MSPs, are professional organizations that proactively manage client organizations’ workforce needs. This includes everything from the initial talent acquisition to managing contingent workers and the risk associated with alternative work arrangements.

Across industries, MSPs are making organizations’ lives easier by handling the complex details associated with alternative working arrangements. Many MSPs offer worker classification services, credential checks, management of staffing suppliers specializing in contingent workers, on- and off-boarding services, and more. Increasingly, MSPs are redefining how organizations secure and manage talent during these tough times.

If your organization is considering hiring contingent workers, partnering with an MSP can help you minimize the risks and maximize the benefits of using contingent workers.

Invest in Vendor Management Systems

BaseballVendor management systems (VMSs) are similar to CRMs and applicant tracking systems. However, your typical VMS does more than simply maintain a database of customers or applicants. VMS technology can streamline many of the processes involved in the acquisition and management of contingent workers.

This advanced technology is also able to provide workforce analytics and talent management tools such as electronic time card management, expense tracking, and project management. VMS technology gives organizations the ability to proactively forecast their talent requirements and reduce the costs associated with the acquisition and management of talent.

Use Temp-to-Perm Arrangements

Many organizations have found value in hiring contingent workers on a project basis and then converting them to full-time employees later on down the line. In these temp-to-perm arrangements, both the employee and the employer benefit: Employers are able to attract and develop highly skilled workforces, and the contingent workers themselves have the chance to “test out” organizations before joining as full-time employees.

Furthermore, temp-to-perm arrangements can also reduce hiring costs and minimize the risks of employee misclassifications.

The skills gap has forced many organizations to rethink how they hire in the post-recession environment. By turning to contingent workers, organizations have been able to remain productive and continue offering high levels of service to their customers.

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