5 Reasons Your Hiring Plan Needs to Include Freelancers

Technology isn’t just changing workplace tools,” write the authors of the 2017 Accenture Technology Vision report on Workforce Marketplaces. “It’s also radically reinventing the way businesses are designed, built, and run.”

More people than ever are choosing to freelance — 55 million, or 35% of the total U.S. workforce, according to Freelancing in America 2016. More companies than ever are taking advantage of this emergent workforce, with 51% of global executives surveyed in Deloitte’s 2016 Global Human Capital Trends study reporting that their organizations plan to increase the use of flexible and independent workers in the next three to five years.

The benefits for freelancers are legion, and include the flexibility to set your own schedule and work remotely, among many others. The list of benefits for companies who hire freelancers is just as long — and includes such important boons as the ability to take the risks you need to grow your business. “Companies are moving toward models where they run their organization less like a hierarchy of static business processes, and more like an open talent marketplace,” notes Accenture.

Here are just a few of the advantages for companies who hire freelancers:

Increased productivity. 73% of executives surveyed by Accenture say corporate bureaucracies are stifling productivity and innovation. “This directly impacts not only a company’s ability to change with the market, but also its market-capitalization, valuation-driven power to invest in the digital economy,” write the authors of Accenture’s report. Working with freelance talent accelerates your team’s ability to ship. In fact, adding contractors to your workforce allows for new projects to be shipped in “weeks if not days, compared to the traditional model that takes months of planning, budgeting, sourcing, and launching,” write Accenture’s authors.

Try before you buy. Freelance projects allow both the company and the candidate to test out the working relationship before signing on full-time. While not every contractor is aspiring to land a full-time gig, for those who are interested in joining your team, a contract project serves as an excellent trial period for both the company and individual operator.
 
 Supplement skills.
Unpredictable workflow changes, emergent market trends, and accelerated timelines require an adaptive and flexible workforce. Special or niche projects with tight deadlines require skills often outside of your current team’s bandwidth. A great example is building an iOS or Android app and bringing in experienced contractors to get that work done.

Hire the best. The best person for a project isn’t always available on a full-time basis, but could be open to a one-off project. Companies can greatly increase their access to best-in-class talent and subject matter expertise via contingent labor. Data scientists, for example, may not be willing to move to a company’s remote headquarters but could be engaged remotely and temporarily.

Hire faster. The process to get approval for a permanent employee can be grueling, with layers of processes and bureaucratic red tape. Adding FTE headcount can take a long time to negotiate internally, and even longer to hire. Finance teams are often times way more likely to approve a contractor than a FTE.

From: Our friends at Hired