What is a Contingent Worker?

When you need a flexible, scalable workforce, introducing contingent workers to the mix is essential. You’ll gain access to highly skilled professionals without needing to permanently bring them onto your payroll, giving you versatility. Plus, it’s a far more cost-effective solution for shorter-term needs, resulting in financial gain.

If you’re wondering what a contingent worker is and how a contingent workforce can benefit your organization, here’s what you need to know.

What Is a Contingent Worker?

A contingent worker is a professional brought into a company on a short-term basis for a particular purpose. It can include a variety of arrangements, including independent contractors, temporary workers, freelancers, and other professionals operating similarly.

Often, contingent workers through contingent workforce management suppliers are pools of talent that are quickly accessible. However, there is no minimum or maximum number of contingent workers required. Whether your organization could use a little or a lot of additional help, there’s a service level available in most cases.

How Can a Contingent Worker Benefit Your Organization

Contingent workers provide companies with exceptional agility. Often, they allow companies to scale their staffing levels up or down with very little notice. Whether your company has seasonal demand fluctuations, short-term projects that require unique skills, or needs to cover planned or unplanned employee absences, contingent workers can address those needs.

Hiring contingent workers through a staffing agency is often highly cost-effective and reduces risk. The contingent team members remain on the supplier's payroll, eliminating a significant administrative burden that your organization would otherwise shoulder. Additionally, the vendor is responsible for unemployment and workers’ compensation costs and ensures full compliance in that regard.

How to Manage a Contingent Workforce Effectively

One area where companies new to contingent employees struggle is management. Proper oversight is essential to ensure performance, and many organizations new to these arrangements aren’t sure how much interaction to provide for short-term hires.

Additionally, they may struggle to get insights into their broader program. This is particularly true if they rely on several suppliers to ensure they have enough contingent workers to meet their needs. That approach is inherently decentralized, which decreases visibility.

As a result, contingent workforce management may seem cumbersome initially. However, it’s far easier with the right vendor management system (VMS) and staffing providers in place. By combining technology with expertise, organizations get a reliable resource that they can tap into when the situation demands it. They can also transition recruitment efforts to expert recruiters, streamlining that part of the process.

Further, a powerful VMS provides you with the required visibility into your program. Essentially, it can centralize your contingent workforce management, optimizing it easier in the short- and long-term.

Want to Understand Further How You Can Manage Your Contingent Workforce?

If you want to ensure you have the services and solutions in place to manage your contingent workforce successfully, SimpleVMS can provide a top-tier solution. SimpleVMS makes overseeing a contingent workforce easier than ever before, ensuring you have the right technology to monitor staffing levels, track performance, and more. See how SimpleVMS can assist with your contingent workforce management today.