Randstad: Businesses Are Converting More Full-time Positions to Freelance or Contingent Roles

Staff Report

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

More than half of global human capital leaders expect to transfer one-third of their permanent positions to contingent roles in the near future, according to the Q4 Talent Trends report by Randstad Sourceright.

Based on a survey of more than 700 global human capital leaders, Randstad Sourceright found that 61 percent of employers plan to replace up to 30 percent of their permanent positions with freelancers, gig workers and independent contractors to become more agile and flexible in the changing economy. Nearly 40 percent of employers surveyed expect they will be able to reduce the impact of talent scarcity by having an integrated hiring strategy.

"Companies are increasingly embracing gig workers, and even robots, in their overall workforce to address the increasingly tight labor market in the U.S. and around the world," said Rebecca Henderson, CEO of Randstad Sourceright. "While in the last decade contingent workers have been viewed very differently as compared to full time positions, today's companies are welcoming the opportunity to employ a more agile workforce, particularly as a greater number of gig workers embrace flexible work practices as well."

Nearly 70 percent of employers surveyed believe the skills gap is widening and will create significant challenges in the near future, which is why a vast majority of companies agree that all available resources should be considered to combat recruitment challenges.

According to the report, companies are investing more in training programs to meet the growing demand for talent. Fifty percent of employers said they have increased budgets for reskilling programs in 2017, and 52 percent say they are investing in training and development technologies at moderate or significant levels.

"HR departments have quickly realized they can no longer stick to business as usual if they hope to hire top talent in the 21st century," said James Stovall, Randstad Sourceright's senior vice president of solution design. "By implementing an integrated talent approach — where permanent, contingent, independent and machine labor are engaged strategically — companies can improve their workforce agility by having access to the right talent at the right time."