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Switzerland - Adecco acquires OnForce to expand its Beeline service offering

11 August 2014

Adecco today announced the acquisition of OnForce, Inc.,  a freelancer management system (FMS) that provides cloud-based solutions for companies to manage their use of freelancers/independent contractors. According to Adecco, these solutions complement the vendor management system (VMS) provided by Adecco’s Beeline business and the merger will create a unique integrated solution for companies to source talent through multiple channels.

Founded in 2004, Onforce is a prototypical online staffing platform that initially focused in IT Field Services but is now broadening its market.

Patrick De Maeseneire, CEO of the Adecco Group said: “I am delighted that OnForce and Beeline are joining forces. For many companies, accessing and managing an ‘extended workforce’ is a fragmented process involving a mixture of technologies such as VMS, FMS, spreadsheets and other ad-hoc tools. The new integrated offering will combine Beeline’s powerful process automation and analytics for sourcing and managing talent through staffing agencies, with OnForce’s ability to access and manage today’s growing population of freelance talent. This will provide our clients with a unique way to simplify their operations and optimize the management of their extended workforces.”

Beeline President Doug Leeby commented: “This is a perfectly complementary merger on every level—business, technical and cultural. There is very little overlap between companies, and together we solve a massive business problem in a unique way. Companies expect us to help them find the best people at the best price with the least amount of risk exposure—whether that is through the supply chain or direct sourcing. This merger will meet the supply and demand needs of our clients by directly connecting them to independent contractors without the risk of an unvetted and uncontrolled sourcing process. Companies will get direct access to just-in-time pre-vetted talent through private networks, which lowers costs and reduces time to source, while still complying with all policies and security measures.”

The transaction will not have a material financial impact on the Adecco Group. Metrics for the acquisition have not been announced.

In April, Staffing Industry Analysts published a report called ‘Online Staffing and Human Cloud Platforms: Staffing Firms Response and Engagement’ (available to SIA research subscribers here) which highlighted the ways that these platforms have become a focus of much interest for many staffing firms and that some staffing firms are beginning to actively engage with them in productive and innovative ways. Since the report was published, Randstad made an investment in European freelancer platform, Gigwalk and now Adecco have entered the space suggesting that major staffing companies are taking a much more serious interest in this fast-growing sector.

John Nurthen, Executive Director of Global Research for Staffing Industry Analysts commented: “Up to now, online staffing firms have mostly been focused on SME clients. With investments from companies like Randstad and Adecco, Staffing Industry Analysts predicts that more corporate-strength solutions will be developed leading to increasing penetration among larger organisations for these services.”

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