consultantsreview logo

Consultants Review Magazine

Contractual Workforce And The Human Resource Development

By Kunal Gupta, Founder & CEO, Mount Talent

content-image

Kunal Gupta, Founder & CEO, Mount Talent

Kunal has received `Emerging CEO of the Year' Iconic Achievement Award at the World Marketing Summit 2020 and his expertise encircle in business, technology, products and solutions, and staffing.

Originally conceived of as contract work, 'alternative' work today includes work performed by outsourced teams, con-tractors, freelancers, gig workers (paid for tasks), and the crowd (outsourced networks). Rapid growth is seen in the number of people working under such arrangements. By this year, for instance, the number of self-employed workers in the United States is projected to triple to 42 million people.  For organizations that want to grow and access critical skills, managing alternative forms of employment has become critical. Many countries are seeing declining birth rates, reducing the size of the labor pool.  

For percent Either stick with numbers of words of surveyed employers worldwide say they are having trouble filling open positions, the largest such percentage since 2006. Among companies with more than 250 employees, the percentage struggling to find qualified candidates rises to Four percent Either stick with numbers of words - So what is the role of HR in this situation ­ It needs to act like a Business Partner / Consultant to the SBU and Job functions.

“Technology plays a great role by enabling sourcing, tracking, engaging, hiring, managing payroll, work and productivity of the workforce”

With ever changing market dynamics and technological changes across Industries including Automobiles, IT Services, Cloud, Software, Banking, Manufacturing, others; companies want to hire people for their current needs since they are unable to predict the future Job demands. Juxtapose that to the need of potential candidates wanting to maximise returns by full utilisation of their skills to provide services in a flexible fashion so as not to be bound to one company for years. Technology plays a great role by enabling sourcing, tracking, engaging, hiring, managing payroll, work and productivity of the workforce. It also helps in the correct assessment of skills for movement across job demands and locations.  
Contractual or Alternate workforce comes in many shapes and sizes:
· Freelance/Independent Workers: Workers who extend the core employee workforce and are typically paid by the hour, day, or other unit of time.
· Gig Workers: Workers paid by the task to complete a specified piece of work.
· Crowd Workers: Workers who compete to participate in a project and are often only paid if they are among the top participants in a competition.
Even among companies with policies and standards, our experience suggests that a strategic, enterprise wide approach is rare. What is needed is an enterprise wide rewiring of how organizations operate as it relates to alternative labor-one that allows it to connect the appropriate talent with the appropriate roles no matter how that talent is sourced. Part of the answer lies in connecting the various parts of the enterprise involved, often in a fragmented manner, in hiring alternative workers. This includes procurement, IT, and, increasingly, HR.

Remembering the principles for human capital reinvention, businesses must consider issues of inclusion, diversity, fairness, and trust when constructing organizational systems around alternative work. Alternative workers can have different backgrounds and cultures than many traditional workers, and these individuals are often accessed in different ways. Can managers lead a team with a diverse mix of people from both traditional and alternative talent pools, when each may come to work with a different set of motivations? Can the organization engage the alternative workforce in a way that promotes the organization's brand as a social enterprise?

What Is The Role Of HR Department? How Will They Facilitate?
It's important that the entire workforce, both alternative and traditional, be treated with respect with regards to culture, inclusion, and work assignments-and that perceptions on all sides reflect these values. While the greater risk is arguably that alternative workers will feel they are treated as outsiders-thus potentially damaging an organization's overall employment brand-it's also possible for the knife to cut the other way. At one major European bank, for example, as part of a movement to create more flexible access to talent in various technology-related fields, managers in the IT department started working systematically with contractors, freelancers, and consultants. But over time, leaders realized that the function's on-balance-sheet employees, who worked almost solely on legacy systems, felt "penalized" compared to these external workers, who were hired for more-interesting projects with "cool," newer technologies. The bank's IT leadership took steps to rebalance the mix-and the experience has now enabled the bank to more effectively access and use alternative labor pools in its IT function.

Risks and challenges like these are not insurmountable, and the alternative workforce is now a critical mainstay of the workforce for a growing number of employers Organizations that take this type of workforce seriously can build strategies and programs to access and engage talented people wherever they may sit in the labor pool, driving business growth and extending the diversity of the workforce.

Magazine Current Issue