Buying into the Healthy Option

This weekend I had a conversation with Henry, my 4 year old, about why chocolate puff cereal is a treat and not a healthy meal. I got the typical responses that you’d expect from anyone that likes what they currently have and is afraid someone might take it away, “But it’s already in my bowl,” “I really like it!” and my all-time favorite, “I don’t like the other stuff” (no matter what the other stuff is!).

Program owners regularly receive responses like Henry’s when telling hiring managers that they can’t use their favorite recruiter or staffing firm moving forward, at least not in the same manner they once did prior to a program rollout. They already have the phone number to their favorite firm programmed into their phone, they already like them and obviously they aren’t going to like anything else you may have picked for them. Whether you are moving to a purely vendor-neutral MSP, a new master supplier solution or just a preferred vendor list, you have to be ready to:

  1. Make it EASY
  2. Show the value, the big picture, what’s in it for them
  3. Make them try it

There are several standard reasons that drive organizations to change their current process — cost savings, risk mitigation, efficiency, visibility, compliance management. Maybe sometimes it’s just because someone decided it’s what should be done, but usually there is a darn good reason for going through the painstaking effort of change. The better we do at presenting the benefits of the change, the more receptive and adaptable people will be. If the benefits of the change can’t be clearly articulated or the process can’t be made relatively easy, then it’s probably not quite ready for go live yet.

Most hiring managers are reasonable people who understand corporate motivations, but often they don’t understand all the nuances of hiring contingent workers. With a little work, we can educate them and still get them everything they need. I’ll guess that most don’t realize the cost savings that can be realized by using fewer suppliers; the efficiency that can be gained from a centralized process, standardized job titles and a fully transparent onboarding process; or the reduction in risk and liability from using suppliers that meet corporate insurance and financial requirements. They’re just thinking, “I’m hungry NOW!”

Yesterday I gave Henry a bowl of cut up fruit, talked about the awesome muscles he would start growing and I didn’t give him  any other snack options. He was hungry, finally tried it and guess what … ate it.

Erin Moore

Erin Moore
Erin Moore is an associate at Brightfield Strategies, which helps Fortune 500 companies with contingent workforce strategy initiatives. She can be reached at emoore (at) brightfieldstrategies (dot) com.

Erin Moore

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