Kosher or Not? Does your Contingent Workforce Management Need Best Practices? | DCR Workforce Blog

Kosher or Not? Does your Contingent Workforce Management Need Best Practices?

Does your company have a contingent workforce program? If yes, are you involved with managing it, wholly or in part? What process do you have to bring contingent workers on board, if any? How satisfactory do you find it? If unsatisfactory, have you measured your program against the relevant contingent workforce management best practices? If you accept the status quo and make no move to change the current state of affairs, whether highly satisfactory or deeply troubling, time will pass…but success will elude you!

Before you can decide that your contingent workforce program is kosher and you do not need to seek any enhancements to it, go through this checklist and answer these questions:

  • How many contingent workers are currently on an assignment with your company?
  • Which facility are they working at? (If you have more than one location)
  • What is the duration for which each of them will be with you?
  • Who supplied them to you? How many suppliers are working for you?
  • What is the average bill rate charged?
  • Have the workers gone through proper orientation and training?
  • Have they undergone background screening and drug checks?
  • Do they all have the necessary authorization to work in the U.S.?
  • Are they onboarded according a stipulated process, and given access to all the tools and training to ensure their productivity?
  • When their tenure ends, are they offboarded efficiently, ensuing that they have no more access to the premises, systems or materials to which they had access during their tenure?
  • Wherever necessary and possible, do you hold an auditable trail of documents, with regard to the background checks, training and other activities?
  • Do you have control over the scheduling of the workers to avoid overburdening them or deploying them to deliver on tasks for which they are neither trained nor equipped?
  • Does your staffing supplier provide you with real-time access to your worker data and an analysis of the data?

The importance of having clear positive answers to each and every one of the above questions makes all the difference between a well-managed and successful contingent workforce program instead of one which is possibly proving more expensive than you ever realized and carries the elements of risk, which could result in risk of maverick spend, joint employer liability, worker injuries as well as classification issues and/or non-compliance issues resulting in charges and penalties.

Adopt these contingent workforce management best practices

What ways can an employer/staffing client mitigate the risks and enhance the management of their contingent workforce program? Let these best practices guide you:

Bring in a Managed Service Provider (MSP) : When a contingent workforce program expands exponentially and hiring of contingent workers stops being centrally managed across locations and functions, positions may not get filled on time, budgets may swell beyond reason as each hiring manager negotiates a rate (without seeking any reasonable rebates or volume discounts) and time-to-fill might stretch beyond reasonable expectations. They may also lack the required efficiencies in onboarding/offboarding the temporary workers.  An MSP comes in exceptionally useful in managing the relationships with the suppliers, aligning requisitions with open positions, negotiating better rates and improving the hiring metrics beyond recognition. From requisition to onboarding, a MSP can bring process change and enhancement along with cost savings. Some companies choose to manage their MSP internally. If you need help to decide the way ahead, you could get more inputs that can help you decide whether to manage your MSP internally or bring in an external MSP.

Adopt a Vendor Management System (VMS) : Dedicated to enable the management of one’s contingent workforce programs, a VMS is all about non-employees and requisitioning them from staffing suppliers directly, as all of them participate in the system. Most VMSs provide increased visibility into the program, enable communication between stakeholders and enforce compliance by putting them through the process steps as well as maintaining an audit trail of the documentation. Some VMS vendors like DCR swear by innovation and sophistication in the services provided to go beyond others’ common features.

Ensure 1099 compliance : When classifying workers as 1099 (independent contractors), employers need to make sure that they have covered all their bases, and avoiding any misclassification. Non-compliance could mean running the risk of fines, penalties and class action suits.

Failure to manage your contingent program well could expose an organization to the risk of having positions go unfilled affecting performance and productivity or having to pay peak market rates for last-minute hiring or having to hire people who do not meet the required quality required.

If you’re facing any of these issues, the time to get kosher with your best practices is now! Email us at to request a demo of Smart Track to see how our innovative system can help alleviate your contingent workforce management issues.

The content on this blog is for informational purposes only and cannot be construed as specific legal advice or as a substitute for competent legal advice. They reflect the opinions of DCR Workforce and may not reflect the opinions of any individual attorney. Do contact an attorney for advice specific to your issue or problem.
Lalita is a people/project manager with extensive experience in operations, HCM and training and development across industries like banking, education, business consulting, BPO and information technology. She believes in a dynamic approach to life and learning as change is the only constant.