While nothing is a certainty, there are some common trends emerging about the shape of the future workforce, while Covid-19 continues to impact us, and as we emerge into the post-Covid era.
According to recent research from Gartner Inc., 32% of companies have started replacing full-time employees with contingent workers, citing benefits as both a cost-saving measure and as a means of providing greater workforce management flexibility.
Added to this, businesses hiring contingent workers have the added benefit of being able to choose from a broad pool of skilled, experienced specialists to maximize project efficiency.
While cost-savings may be a short-term goal, flexibility is going to be a longer-term aim, driven both by the demands of the workers themselves, who have now experienced more flexible working and its benefits, and the need of the business to be agile to any required changes at any point.
Decisions made post-Covid will separate out those with the strongest business models. Companies that have been investing in rethinking contingent workforce management will be solidifying their client relationships and will emerge stronger on the other side. Businesses that hadn’t previously embraced the contingent workforce will more likely be open to its flexibility and cost benefits, including increased demand for wider, remote talent pools.
We’re not underestimating the planning required to create a mixed workforce; it’s going to need a different approach to workforce planning and a revision of how teams are structured. It’s also going to need to accommodate the ability to be adaptable and agile.
What we do anticipate is that those companies using this opportunity to accelerate their move to a new workforce model will be able to adapt their business more rapidly, and return to growth sooner as they focus on bringing in the right skills to their business, rather than trying to fill traditional gaps.