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HCMWorks Insights

The Trend to Hire Freelance or Contract Employees Benefits Companies

Posted by Julia Fournier on 24 Aug 2017

It’s no secret there’s been a shift in the way companies operate, notably the huge increase in non-permanent (contingent) workers; previously the majority of employees would work their way up in an organization, staying there for years, even a whole career.

The impact of younger generations on the workforce, economic uncertainty and the dropped stigma around changing jobs, are all catalysts aiding contingent work to become a norm. More than 1/3 of American workers are Millennials, (18-34 years old), making Millennials the largest generation in the US labor force. A recent PWC report, Work-Life 3.0: Understanding how we’ll work next, found that 1/3 of Millennials indicated they would consider changing jobs within the next six months.

The predisposition of younger employees to change jobs, and the attraction of working freelance or on contract, is a trend that can’t be ignored.

The PWC report explained:

“Estimates show this trend accelerating, with nearly 40% of the US workforce expected to be “freelancers by choice” by 2020. To succeed in this landscape, organizations will need to re-evaluate how they treat, view and manage their workforces so that independent talent and full-time talent can coexist strategically.”

 The Rise of Independent Workers

The economy is changing and we must adapt to this flux and away from archaic styles that won’t hold up with next generations. Gone are the days when an employee will stay with a company for their whole career.

Developing a talent strategy that includes contingent workers, presents many opportunities.

Increasingly industries are realizing how invaluable contingent workers are; workers, who want to develop skills from numerous roles, and follow this international trend towards non-permanent work.

So why does your company NEED these contingent workers? Here are a few reasons that showcase some of the benefits of this style of employment.

1. Individual Impact

By definition, your contingent workforce will be with you for a short period of time, and they will aim to make the largest impact in their employment with you. Typically a contingent professional fosters and facilitates change, and are passionate about their work, hungry for projects to showcase their skill.

An individual will want to prove to you, and more importantly to themselves, that they can positively affect your business, in a short time frame. This is because the contingent workforce uses each piece of experience as a stepping stone onto their next opportunity.

2. Fresh Perspective

Having a static workforce, people who have been with your company for a number of years, often makes your business lose its agility, and ability to think outside of the box. Contingent workers provide your company with a new outlook, to them, in fact, there is no box.

Everything from how your business operates, to gaps or opportunities previously overlooked, contingent employees use their unique perspectives to be assets to your business, solving, adapting and revitalizing your company.

3. Diverse Backgrounds

Your staff each bring different factors and skills, whether it’s marketing, admin, finance or sales, participating in unique parts of your organization and creating a healthy and well-rounded business.

The non-permanent workforce have pieced together an incredible wealth of knowledge and expertise from their previous roles. This workforce brings more than just a fresh perspective, but new skills, business practices and abilities which can aid your company to grow, develop and compete.

4. Brand Ambassadors

Some of the best publicity is derived from creating positive and memorable interactions with your stakeholders, previous employees and customers, and with this in mind, the contingent workforce can bring more benefits.

Even after their tenure is complete, the contingent workers can be of use. Having a talent pool of your previous workers will expand your network exponentially, generating WOM (Word of Mouth) marketing for your company, and increasing your businesses reach and exposure.


All of these are important reasons why having non-permanent staff in your workforce is invaluable in 2017 and going forward. The implementation of this style can greatly impact multiple areas of your company and help your business evolve and innovative.

10 Ways to Reduce Costs & Risk of Your Contingent Workforce

Tags: Workforce Management, Contingent Workforce

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