Intense competition, rapidly changing business environments, and rising customer demands are driving change in how businesses procure and manage their human workforce.

Autonomy is one of the largest factors driving top-talent in highly specialized industries to move to an extended workforce strategy, meaning that this group of workers is in high demand. To make sure you find the right talent for your project, we gathered this list of 4 things to look for when you are evaluating contingent workers to extend your team.

  1. Previous duties and responsibilities: Find out what skills and experience your candidate has that can apply to the assignment(s) you have in mind.

    1. Even new freelancers have some work history to rely on, even if it is not within the current service they are offering.

    2. Utilize skills assessments and credential validation as applicable.

  2. Compliance controls: State and federal labor guidelines change frequently. Before you bring a new contingent worker onboard, make sure you have tracking and reporting in place.

    1. Consult a labor specialist to determine how to classify workers and what guardrails and policies you want to put in place.

    2. Determine if you will be able to access audit trails once those policies are in place to have proof of compliance.

  3. Credentials and certifications: Whether in engineering, field service, marketing, or any other service field, the technology serving the industry is always changing. In customer-facing positions, it is even more critical that your chosen contingent workers have the right qualifications and certifications before sending them out into the field.

    1. Do you have a way to organize and sort specific certifications from others to simplify the process of finding the right freelancer?

    2. Utilize skills assessments and credential validation as applicable.

  4. Team alignment: Even on short term assignments, the independent contractor you’ve engaged will have to deal with your internal team.

    1. Assess throughout the process whether the candidate has the right fit for your culture and clearly understands your internal processes, protocols, and deadlines.

If you are just starting on your extended workforce strategy:

  1. Think through key questions and processes that will need to be created including what tools you will need to manage them.

  2. Mobile applications and freelance management systems can facilitate and automate internal processes that can bog down the progress of the deliverable, such as clocking in and out, payment of invoices, assignment details, and more.

Automate the Process of Onboarding Contingent Workers

Recent research by ADP’s Research Institute found that one in six enterprise workers are already gig workers, with 40% of businesses reporting one in four. Despite this widespread engagement, businesses do not appear to have systematic tracking systems in place for their contingent workforce. Since this extended workforce often falls outside of the traditional workforce strategy, companies lack visibility into an often highly productive core of their workforce. As a result, much of the contingent workforce spend is considered “rogue” and is unaccounted for, leaving many in the dark about the performance and impact.

But it doesn’t need to stay that way. Now is the time to make changes in your workforce strategy and set up systems to unlock the power of your extended workforce. The WorkMarket freelance management system is an end-to-end enterprise-grade technology platform that can connect to current systems. Part of the automated onboarding allows a company to direct their extended workforce to a digital platform to sign up, download an optional app, apply for different labor pools and identify their skills and credentials via assessments. Once onboarded, workers can use the mobile app to apply for assignments and then clock-in and out digitally and send in uploaded proof of performance such as images or other documents. They can also interact with the project manager directly in the app. At the end of an assignment, companies can then rate workers to ensure that when they send out new assignments, they can review profile details, timeliness, reliability, and ratings of candidates.