Contingent workforce programs have gone beyond the tactical. It's more than simply reacting to a current demand. These programs have come a long way from the days when a manager would ask a vendor to send a body when they needed a specific hourly job done. Contingent now refers to a worker who could be an expert on a very esoteric, technical subject and be paid top-dollar for his or her know-how for a couple of weeks or longer.
The downturn has further intensified this process. There has been an uptick in temporary employment. Companies don't want to add to their headcount but need jobs done and projects completed. So they get a contingent on board. And here is the game-changer, say staffing experts.
Take for example a corporation, X, that hired a temporary computer programmer with specific qualifications to be part of a team in the fourth quarter of 2009. In the spring of 2010, the same need crops up. The temporary worker is no longer with company X. But the company instead of going with 5 suppliers it has used considers re-hiring the particular programmer.
The contingent workforce program team evaluates that person's past performance, the presence he or she had on the team, what is his/her contribution and what the impact has been. Further the agency that provides the worker is scrutinized. Questions like did the supplier keep an eye on its employee while at company X are raised. Did it check back with the hiring manager for feedback?
To handle feedback of this character, company X's internal processes have to be well-established. "The idea (for a client company) is to reuse the temporary resources in an intelligent strategic fashion and then ultimately evaluate the internal process so that it can replicate that success from a quality and cost perspective," says Capperella. None of this is possible if internal processes and communications are not clearly established. Corporations need and want a mature domestic procedure to leverage the developments in the staffing industry.