Rarely has the future of work looked so different, so quickly. In less than a year, the business world as we know it has completely changed.
But not all change is negative. Elements of the workforce have arguably evolved at a faster pace than would have been possible pre-pandemic. In particular, the shift in corporate mindsets around remote and contingent workforces have seen a significant change almost overnight. And while it’s impossible to predict how the world of work will look in the future, there are a number of trends we’re seeing that will reshape the workforce.
An evolving workforce mix
Agility, transformation and a need for remote working in the current economy have diversified companies extensively. Each of these elements are something contingent talent can bring to the table, so it’s perhaps no surprise that more businesses are tapping into these resources. However, embracing this external talent pool does require better workforce planning. Corporate needs and the composition of the workforce have changed, and workforce plans increasingly need to reflect the delivery of strategic tasks and SoW outputs, not just headcount.
Globalised contingent talent pools
The greater acceptance of remote working has broken down many barriers, and globalised contingent talent pools. There are currently around 78 million freelancers worldwide, with numbers set to continue growing. With more employers recognising that they don’t need their staff sitting together to deliver results, we certainly expect to see firms focus on sourcing without borders, where key skills are valued over location or travel abilities.
Diversity and inclusion
While it’s been on the business agenda for a while, diversity and inclusion has become a priority like never before following the shocking events of 2020. A truly inclusive workplace can result in a work environment that welcomes and nurtures all talent, and any D&I strategy should extend not just to permanent employees but also to the contingent workforce. We’re generally seeing HR professionals take a more active role, resulting in a more holistic and human approach to how contingent workforces are managed.
Direct sourcing and contingent RPO
Unsurprisingly, the pandemic has brought about a need for many organisations to reduce their costs while improving the quality and fit of talent, resulting in a move towards direct sourcing. What’s also of particular interest is the growing trend towards employers being more visible in sourcing elements of their contingent workforce, with many looking in the direction of contingent recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) solutions to further support their own direct sourcing efforts.
Rethinking your employer branding
Savvy employers that are already recognising the increased value of the highly skilled extended workforce have begun to reconsider how they adapt and leverage their employer branding to attract higher quality, flexible non-employee talent pools – and it’s a trend that is set to continue in the immediate future.
While these future workplace trends can present exciting opportunities, each element requires attention that will further stretch human resources and talent acquisition teams. Now more than ever, a joined-up approach to contingent workforce management is needed – and that’s something that an advanced managed services provider, such as Guidant Global, can deliver.
By Brian Salkowski, chief operating officer at Guidant Global