We are often approached by clients looking for candidates for specific projects or to meet extraordinary business deadlines, as well as more ‘typical’ scenarios such as covering maternity, annual and sick leave. And we’re not alone. Having a flexible employment strategy is proving more popular than ever.
In fact, contractors and freelancers now make up a huge portion of the UK workforce – an estimated 1.91m according to the Labour Force Survey. Clearly the workforce is shifting. But how do you know which flexible employment strategy is right for you? Should contracting only be a solution during turbulent times, or are there advantages to using this model even during times of economic growth?
Benefits of contracted workers
Budgeting pressures around recruiting permanent staff – and even freezes on hiring – make contractors a very attractive prospect. Crucially, businesses can scale up and down as required, without the expenses associated with hiring and firing. And seasoned contractors are usually quick to adapt to new work environments and are incentivised to go the extra mile, as the quality of their performance determines whether they win repeat work; as well as helping to build their reputation in the industry.
Hiring contractors is also a low-risk way of assessing whether potential new employees are able to operate at a high level, fit the corporate culture and work well within the existing team. Of course, contracting staff is not always an appropriate solution for every business need. However, it can work well as part of a long term recruitment and flexible employment strategy. As the number of freelancers increases, this will become a viable option for more organisations – in times of prosperity as well as difficulty.
Read on about which issues to consider if you plan on hiring a contractor.