At some large companies, 30% of the procurement budget goes to temporary workers. Others say they employ more consultants than W-2 employees.
There’s no doubt about it: the upside of a more prominent contingent workforce is here.
This seismic shift in the employment industry is extremely beneficial for employers, as it helps them decrease labor costs, become more flexible, improve their organizational performance, and hire “on demand.”
But these benefits don’t come about on their own. To fully reap the positive effects of hiring consultants, use a staffing firm. Working with experts can (and usually does) mean the difference between a great hire and a mediocre one.
Ready to learn the four characteristics of high-quality staffing firms? Let’s jump in.
1. They Hire the Right Personalities
When you hire traditional employees, you probably spend a fair amount of time debating whether or not candidates seem like they’re good cultural fits. After all, it doesn’t matter how talented someone is—if they don’t share your core beliefs or values, they’re not going to do well at your company.
It might feel impossible to apply the same filter to a consultant. However, an excellent staffing firm will factor in your unique workplace culture and find the appropriate people.
2. RecontactingSM: They Emphasize Communication
Unless you’re tracking everything your consultants do, it’s fairly easy to discover problems only after they’ve grown significantly. Next thing you know, your project is far behind schedule and you have to scramble to catch up.
That’s where a top-notch staffing firm comes in. At Dexian, for example, we call consultants every week and build lasting relationships. We call this approach RecontactingSM. Our consultants become friends and if they’re having issues, we typically know immediately.
Having this type of course-correcting mechanism in place is crucial, because it lets you avoid surprises. Make sure the company you use has a frequent and reliable method for checking in with their workers.
3. They’re Specialized
Every assignment has its own nuances, requirements, and quirks—which means that, in general, going with a staffing firm that’s familiar with your technologies and vertical will always generate more qualified applicants than general staffing firms.
If you’re, say, a well-known finance corporation, look for talent acquisition firms that have previously helped other financial services organizations. You know they’ll have the capability to find the niche skill sets you’ve asked for.
4. Remarketing: Proactively Help Consultants
The best agencies start looking for their consultants’ next engagements before they’ve even finished their current one. At Dexian, we call this Remarketing.
This guarantees that the consultant doesn’t spend the last couple weeks at your company with her foot out the door, halfheartedly completing her work while searching frantically for another assignment.
On the contrary, since she knows she’ll have somewhere to work, she’ll feel relaxed, secure, and focused. The ticking clock won’t have any impact on her productivity or quality of results.
Just like you’re selective about the employees you bring on board, be selective about the staffing firm you choose to partner with. The firms with the most well-designed, thoughtful processes, culture, and practices will consistently deliver the best consultants.