The shift from a full-time to a more freelance-driven workplace has become increasingly common among industries ranging from transportation-for-hire to advertising and event management as the U.S. economy improves. In few areas is this idea of on-demand talent more palpable than when it comes to employing technology professionals.
Many of the publicly traded staffing companies flagged the demand for skilled talent, particularly in technology, continued to outpace the supply during the second quarter. In fact, one of Dice’s customers, a West Coast staffing company, believed that fewer technology professionals were choosing to work as contractors and reached out to us to investigate.
Turns out, more hiring managers (31 percent) believe they are seeing an increase in the number of technology professionals working as contractors, as compared with a year ago. That result outstrips the proportion of America’s hiring managers (18 percent) who said the supply of technology contractors is declining.
What’s driving this rise in contractors? As the labor environment has become more stable, technology professionals’ confidence is on the rise. Contracting has become a viable option as tech pros feel more assured once one project ends, another is right at their fingertips. With opportunities readily available, attracting new talent is key, as well as getting the most out of your bench which needs consistent nurturing.
Consider this, the average base contract rate for technology professionals in the U.S. is $65.87 per hour, according to the Dice Salary Survey. Keeping that bench working equates to earning money over longer periods of time, while staffing professionals can spend time focusing on building new business and courting new talent.
To firms that feel they’re coming up short on contractors for available projects, reassess what’s on offer and how can you commit to not just keeping their career healthy, but to keep it thriving. Economic confidence is growing, it’s up to each of us to continue to promote confidence in contracting as a career.
|Have you seen a change in the availability of contractors?|
|I’ve seen fewer professionals working as contractors, as compared to a year ago||18%|
|I’ve seen more professionals working as contractors, as compared to a year ago||31%|
|I’ve seen no change in professionals choosing to work as contractors over the last year||36%|
|I have no opinion||15%|
Source: Dice Hiring Survey, with 538 tech-focused hiring managers responding.