On-demand workforce is the secret weapon for entrepreneurs

Leading organizations are using the on-demand model to access quality talent fast

From SeasonedPros.ca Content Lab

Seismic changes in technology, demographics and the digital economy have given rise to an urgent need to change business approach to sourcing and deploying talent in their organizations.

Businesses were already adapting talent strategies to these new realities before the COVID-19 crisis. Lockdowns and restrictions on in-person interactions accelerated the pace of change with remote and hybrid working models. It also showed talent and hiring organizations what was possible.

Talent shortages precipitated an urgency to change business models as a generation of senior talent began leaving the workforce and phenomena such as “the Great Resignation” squeezed talent pipelines. 

There is a race to boost the talent pool to supply the right people to keep up with the rapid advance in technology. For many organizations, the answer is found in the interim talent model.

The Great Retooling

Innovative organizations are retooling their talent strategies by moving away from stable full-time hires only and adopting an on-demand model that uses senior contract workers and highly-skilled subject-matter experts to complete term projects to solve business problems. 

They are also relying on speed to market to match the right talent to in-demand roles as quickly as possible.

These premium contract workers are experienced in areas such as project management, operations, marketing, change management, finance and accounting. 

Some are senior leaders who are qualified to step into interim C-suite roles and projects. They aren’t just freelancers, they are sophisticated talent solutions.

Access to on-demand talent is the secret weapon of entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs and small businesses are on the cutting edge of these transformations and in many ways, they are the model for this rethinking of the talent strategy.

Because they are nimble, these businesses can move quickly to access talent with the skills necessary to keep up with the demands for niche talent which is literate in areas like cloud computing, AI and marketing-driven content creation.

Entrepreneurs have a built-in “skin-in-the-game” and thus have less time for long considerations of complex management restructures. They have agility in their DNA and understand the importance of accessing quality talent quickly.

Smaller operations don’t always have the budgets for senior full-time hires and prefer interim roles to complete specific projects at a lower cost and meet their business goals and remain competitive.

They are razor-focused on gaining a competitive advantage using the best talent on demand. 

Creating an on-demand talent strategy by adapting the entrepreneurial model

Businesses that wish to future-proof by using the on-demand talent strategy need to adjust their practices and structures to prepare for a workforce that will blend full-time with project workers.

Here are some important considerations for adopting this model:

  1. Design operations for on-demand talent – Contract workers should not be an afterthought or an ad hoc solution. They should be a central component in all business planning and operations.

  2. Budget and resource for contract hires – allocate personnel to the hiring of on-demand talent and managing project-oriented work.

  3. Divide work into projects – Business goals and operations should be “sliced and diced” into discrete projects which can be completed on a term basis by subject matter experts.

  4. Prepare the business culture for the revolving door of on-demand talent – These workers collaborate with full-time employees for short periods of time. They enter and leave the organization as projects are launched and completed. Change is permanent in the blended workplace. 

  5. Respect your on-demand talent – Contract workers are experienced, subject-matter experts who are often coming from senior roles. Leaders should promote a culture of respect for the value and skill sets they bring to the business. If they are not respected, they will leave the organization, leaving a talent gap and a big problem with the on-demand model.

  6. Pay talent at market value – quality on-demand talent does not come cheap. Talent is a very competitive market and freelance workers will leave for better-paid contracts if a company fails to remunerate high-skilled workers at market value.

  7. Get ready for new ideas – outside talent brings new approaches and ideas to the table. It is crowd-sourced innovation. This may disrupt and threaten old ways of thinking, but this disruption is the essence of innovation in fast-changing and hyper-competitive economic environments.

  8. Know in advance where to find good on-demand talent – Businesses that restructure for the on-demand talent model should develop strong relationships with talent-sourcing agencies and platforms that supply quality workers so they can be sourced as quickly as possible for project-based work.

  9. Be flexible for contract workers’ needs – The best senior talent may wish to work remotely in another town or country. They might want three days per week for no more than six months per contract. Businesses will need to accommodate these wishes if they want the best talent for the project.

SeasonedPros.ca is an on-demand business talent source. Clients with an immediate need for experienced talent trust us to source professionals for project, interim and part-time roles. Each professional in our national database has more than 20 years of business experience. We provide our clients two-four vetted professionals in 10 business days or less.

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