Three Things to Share with your Client about the Gig Economy

separate classOver the past decade, the increase of contract employees has been significant, some of which can be attributed to the end of the Great Recession. While many of these individuals are employed through the sharing economy, more highly skilled contract employees are emerging in multiple roles and levels across industries.

Addison Group recently conducted a survey that examines the current employment landscape for contract employees, also known as the gig economy. Our survey found that nearly half (46%) of hiring managers have hired a contract employee in the past 12 months alone. Addison Group foresees that the gig economy will continue to grow over the next five to 10 years, especially as the younger generations’ desire for exposure across industries increases. The survey also found that 62 percent of millennials are open to working as a contract employee, further proving the gig economy is here to stay.

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As the economy rebounds and more jobs are created, it’s a recruiter’s responsibility to educate clients on the permanent fixture of contract employees in the workplace. Here are three things recruiters need to know in regards to the gig economy:

  1. You may need to educate your clients on the gig economy. It is not uncommon for traditional employers to be hesitant or wary of hiring contract employees as they may not be fully educated on what benefits the gig economy has to offer. The survey found that one in four hiring managers have never hired a temporary worker, and that number only grows when it comes to Baby Boomers.Hiring contract employees is an attractive option for clients because it reduces the overhead associated with a full-time hire, it’s a quick solution to under-staffing issues and fills a role with someone who can have a dedicated focus to important, short-term projects. The normalization of contract employees will continue to rise, and educating your clients now will help them stay ahead of the curve.
  2. Full-time employees are open to working with contractors. The survey revealed that 94% of US employees with hiring responsibility are more willing to hire a temporary contractor than they were just five years ago. This rings especially true for millennials, who have spent much of their career working alongside contract workers. Additionally, the survey found that a majority of employees across generations, millennials (58%), Gen X (58%) and Baby Boomers (56%), felt positively about working under a temporary contractor. Your clients should know that rather than fearing how other employees may react to a contract worker, consider the survey findings that in today’s workplace, it is more commonplace and accepted.
  3. Be open to senior-lever contract workers. An astounding 88% of hiring managers said they had an increased willingness to hire senior contract candidates today versus five years ago. Often, society thinks of contract work as for entry-level or administrative roles only, but senior-level contract positions are on the rise as well. Encourage your clients to be confident hiring senior-level contract employees, as a majority of the millennial generation feels comfortable working under a contract employee, and that generation increasingly makes up the majority of the workforce. Additionally, over a third of hiring managers admit that testing the waters with a candidate is beneficial to them, which in turn drives their decision to hire an employee on a contract basis before bringing them on full time. Remind your clients this benefit can be especially valuable when looking for senior level employees.

View the Addison Group Workplace Survey Gig Economy findings here.

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Gabe McDonald

Gabe McDonald
Gabe McDonald is regional vice president at Addison Group.

Gabe McDonald

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