One of the most powerful results of a business solution has to be efficiency. Who doesn’t want to be more efficient? I know it’s something I strive to do—worker smarter, but not necessarily harder.
Efficiency is at the heart of the business solution I address in this month’s cover story. Since joining HRO Today eight years ago, I have seen the organizational use of both recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) and managed services programs (MSP) grow by leaps and bounds. RPO allows organizations the flexibility to scale their permanent workforce up or down according to business needs. MSP provide visibility into the spend on, volume of, and skill of contract labor. And now we are seeing sophisticated
organizations merge the management of all types of talent into a total workforce solution.
Visibility drives the efficiency that total workforce solutions deliver—a transparent view of the workers that makes a business thrive. Today’s marketplace of talent is diverse and includes permanent workers, contractors, freelancers, SOW, and even robotics. By managing through a single lens, organizations gain a holistic view of how they are sourcing their candidates; the type of workers they need to succeed; and the population within their talent networks. This provides a competitive advantage in terms of decreasing the time it takes to fill critical roles and ensuring candidates are more productive sooner.
It feels very different in an ocean when you are in front of a wave instead of beneath a wave or behind one. As waves recede, they dissipate energy because they have served their purpose. For several years, I have been predicting what is now taking place in the market. The merger of professional services for permanent and contingent labor is really happening, and like that wave, it is building energy as it approaches.
Okay, I know you are now saying: Enough with the metaphors, what do you actually mean? What I am saying is RPO and MSP are merging into one platform that HRO Today has dubbed the total workforce solution (see The Emergence of Total Workforce Solutions on page 12).
This is not a phenomenon, a fad, or even a trend. It is simply an evolution of the product offerings. The RPO platform addresses many of the needs of permanent hiring. However, in many countries—and increasingly, in the U.S.—the benefits are portable and contingent labor and independent contracting are on the rise. In the U.S., the market purchases MSP services that generate efficiencies and management over contingent labor supply procurement. This product is evolving, but there are some limitations due to “co-employment” exposures that date back to the 1997 Vizaino vs. Microsoft decision by the Ninth Federal Circuit. Obviously, judges don’t understand how the real world works or they would have done a better job allowing management to, umm, what do you call that again? Oh, yeah, manage.
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