And the Winners Are ...

In the contingent workforce world, the publication of the VMS and MSP Supplier Competitive Landscape report  is a little akin to Oscar night. The names are released and there is jubilation in some quarters and renewed ambition in others.  This year was no different. But one thing stands out. 

Vendor managed systems and managed service providers are here to stay. The amount of money spent on global temporary labor and run through a VMS and MSP increased by 23 and 28 percent respectively from 2009. By contrast U.S. temporary labor spend was up by 12 percent.

The numbers are staggering: global VMS and MSP spend under management among survey participants in 2010 was $76 billion and $48 billion.  What stands out is that user adoption is still rising. More and more end users of contingent labor are formalizing their CW programs.

So what does all this mean? Let me start off by saying it’s good news. The VMS and MSP have created a staffing marketplace, one that is efficient and automated.  It’s a long way from the personal-relationship arrangement that once characterized the industry. Yes, there are those who believe that we have lost something in the fact many suppliers can’t golf with their clients and offer a particular skill set over an alternate shot.

But what we have instead is a well-organized bazaar. As a result, the product — people — is cheaper and more conveniently accessible, so companies buy more. Yes, mark-ups are lower for the staffing companies, but everyone wins because staffing firms get more volume, more temporary workers get jobs, and the clients get skilled personnel handling their assignments.

I know participating in the Landscape Report’s survey process is tough. But I can tell you that we are meticulous in our analysis in order for the report to be most beneficial for you, the CW leader. You have an expert third-party service providing a professional and insightful review, making the report a cost-effective, business consultation. It’s also another way of gaining an outside perspective on your organization’s strengths and opportunities for improvement.

So client or supplier, sit back review the findings and remember like Oscar night, there are winners, some surprises, others whose performance was great but didn’t make it to the top, and the rest who still have some distance to travel.

The 2011 VMS and MSP Supplier Competitive Landscape report is available to CWS Council members, who can access the report here. To learn more about CWS Council membership, click here.


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