It seems that the definition of “contingent labor” changes depending on who you’re talking to. To some, contingent specifically means agency temps (excluding freelancers, contractors and consultants). To others, contingent includes freelancers, contractors and consultants alongside agency temps –basically everyone who is not a direct hire.
I believe the correct definition of contingent includes all non-employee talent.
With that said, there is still plenty of confusion in the market about when to use each type of contingent worker. Is a freelancer best suited for your specific project? A SOW consultant? Or maybe a temporary worker from a staffing firm?
Corporate buyers of contingent labor — and even HR and procurement departments — are constantly confronted with scenarios just like this. One way to better understand the different categories of contingent workers is to draw up a classic pros & cons list.
- Pros – Ensure quality and benefit from a specialized skill-set, some of the most talented individuals only work as freelancers because they prefer the lifestyle.
- Cons – Worker classification may present labor compliance concerns
Statement of work (SOW) consultants
- Pros – Very tight and defined project scope
- Cons – Typically more expensive than temp engagements
- Pros – Immediate availability and pre-screened candidates
- Cons – Steep labor markups
Work Market is hosting a special workshop at the CW Solutions Forum, October 6-7 in Las Vegas, where we’ll provide businesses with a framework to effectively navigate the different classifications of contingent workers.
The workshop, titled “Temps, ICs, SOWs & More: Matching the right non-traditional workers with the right jobs,” will be led by Work Market COO & CFO Jeff Wald and SIA’s Global Editorial Director Subadhra Sriram.