The Contingent Workforce: Pushing Business Forward in 2015

As the national economy experienced continued growth in 2014, employers and job seekers alike are optimistic about what 2015 will bring. Though hiring is expected to be high across the board, the temporary staffing industry is experiencing an unprecedented level of growth. For example, internal data from The Execu|Search Group’s Employment Index indicated a 72% increase in the quantity of temporary assignments we received from clients in 2014 compared to 2013, which indicates that both clients and candidates are seeing the value in temporary staffing.

According to our 2015 Regional Hiring Outlook, in which we surveyed clients about their hiring plans for 2015, 41% of hiring managers currently utilize temporary/contract staff as one of their hiring solutions. We attribute the increased usage of temporary workers to the fact that employers are now seeing concrete examples of how a contingent workforce can contribute to an organization’s financial and operational success.

Glenn Bernstein, Chief Operating Officer of The Execu|Search Group’s Temporary Staffing division, advises employers to understand how this new way of thinking can be advantageous to remaining competitive in the current economic climate. As an employer, utilizing a contingent workforce in 2015 has the potential to push your business forward through:

Time and flexibility

Hiring managers gain more time and flexibility to react to and prepare for quickly changing or seasonal business needs. For example, companies could utilize a high-level consultant to complete a project that will only take 2-3 months instead of investing in a full-time salary for someone you are going to utilize for 2 months of the year. Not only can you rely on temporary workers for time-sensitive needs, but both parties have the chance to determine if the current role is truly a good fit for them before making a longer-term hiring commitment.

Cost effectiveness

Utilizing a contingent workforce alongside permanent staff is proving to be a more fiscally-sound option for organizations as you are only paying for a candidate’s skillset when you need it. Having the option to bring in high-level talent only when you need it may help to keep your hiring costs low and limit potential financial loss that comes with layoffs or turnover from full-time employees. In the end, it allows you to better manage your organizational goals and budget expectations in this ever-evolving economy and job market.

Test your candidates before you invest

As the general nature of the temporary staffing industry is predicated on finding qualified candidates that can help to continue regular business operations, having the time to assess how well your candidate performs before potentially making a full-time commitment is an invaluable option to have as a hiring manager. While you may get strong technical skills from a temporary employee, you will also have the chance to measure their intangible soft skills such as personality fit, cultural fit, adaptability, leadership potential, etc. to determine if they are truly the best fit for your team/organization moving forward.

With all of these advantages, the U.S. Staffing Industry Forecast: 2014 Update projects that the U.S. temporary staffing industry will grow by 6% in 2015. In light of the evolving marketplace, employers are encouraged to consider utilizing a contingent workforce to work alongside full-time employees and embrace how this opportunity can positively impact their bottom line.