With enterprise businesses facing mounting challenges in recruiting and sustaining the top digital marketing talent required for optimal performance, many are turning to a contingent workforce model as an effective staff augmentation pathway to bring the necessary skills into their businesses.
The prevalence of the gig economy and other factors have led to a situation where contingent workers are representing almost half the total workforce at many businesses.
Read on to gain an understanding of how to define a contingent workforce, how the provision of contingent workers as a managed service differs from hiring traditional contractors, as well as some cornerstone advantages of working with onsite vendors to bring in the talent today’s marketing and revenue teams need to stay ahead of the curve.
What is a Contingent Workforce?
Put simply, a contingent worker means anyone hired into the business for a contracted period of time or on a specific project basis outside regular full-time employment. Broadly speaking any contractor, freelancer, consultant, or other type of temporary employee falls under the definition of a contingent workforce.
Onsite Vendors vs. Traditional Contractors
As opposed to traditional contractors, who often work for themselves and are not associated with a larger business, agencies and other businesses that specialize in providing talent as a managed service, often referred to as Onsite Vendors, offer talent they’re hired into their business to be imbedded within or work alongside in-house teams in order to augment with additional skills and/or expertise.
There are many benefits to utilizing an onsite vendor or staff augmentation solution as opposed to hiring independent freelance contractors, a number of which we’ve detailed below…
Five Benefits of a Managed Contingent Workforce Solution
1. Agency Talent for Corporate Enterprise
Today more than ever, talent gravitates to where they’re most comfortable, be that within agencies, corporate businesses, or start-ups, and many will even further delineate between client-side and supply side within their industry of choice.
This reality enhances the challenges hiring managers face when attempting to attain the type of talent they need for their in-house teams. Often times corporates know how to hire corporates, start-ups know how to attract start-up people, and agencies know how to bring on and retain agency people – say nothing for the client vs. supplier mentality.
Where a more corporate business or start-up needs to bring on agency people with the prerequisite skills, an onsite vendor solution to deliver and support with the management of contingent marketing talent offers a viable method to achieve success.
2. Flexible Team Skill Deployment
One of the great things about marketing is the ever-increasing rate of change. Unhappy with the current status quo, wait a month and everything will have flipped.
That said, this shifting ground also means technology applications, and the skills required to leverage them, evolves at a pace next-to-impossible for most in-house teams to keep up with.
The good news is contract talent with the various specific in-demand skills can be phased in and out of your contingent teams to supply the right-now know-how required to stay ahead of the curve.
3. Talent-Driven Outcomes
Unlike the process and considerations hiring managers go through when taking on an internal hire, the contingent workforce model, itself supported and augmented by the capabilities of an experienced B2B marketing agency, allows you to invest in an outcome delivered by people with the right skills, rather than a version of the other way around.
That’s not to say that you should ignore things like cultural fit, and other factors when working with an onsite vendor to bring on talent from their contract teams, only that you not need to consider these and other factors in the same way you would considering the candidates are employed by the agency. Leading nicely to our fourth point…
4. Hired by the Onsite Vendor, Working for You
Many marketing leaders face the reality of needing to bring additional skills into their business without the ability to increase internal team headcounts.
Here again the staff augmentation model presents the ability to utilize marketing budget, rather than headcount budget, to add those much-needed skills without taking on the additional financial considerations, such as benefits and other costs of employment, taken care of by the onsite vendor agency who recruit, hire and employ the contingent workers.
5. Contingent Workforce Management Support
Given the need for contract employees is in no small way driven by the need to keep up with ever-evolving technology and marketing activation opportunities, it’s easy to see how marketing leaders can find themselves in a predicament where they struggle to provide day-to-day direction to those operating within emerging channels and platforms.
Another benefit to using an onsite vendor over a traditional contract employee(s) is the ability to create a dotted line report into and agency leader capable of taking on said day-to-day management and support as required.
This dotted line support coupled with the strategic planning around team makeup are of critical value in ensuring contingent teams are imbedded with their own reporting hierarchy, and not built as flat teams that will only expand your direct report workload.
FluidTalent – Contingent Workforce as a Managed Service
Ledger Bennett are a supplier partner of staff augmentation as a managed service to enterprise B2B marketing teams across the globe via our FluidTalent division. We offer a unique proposition to onsite vendor procurement leaders and contingent workforce program managers in not only providing the ability to supply contract digital marketing talent, but in our unique ability to offer the support of a leading B2B digital marketing agency for training and the provision of supplemental managerial support with day-to-day direction.