How Digitization Can Help Contingent Workforce Management be “Future Ready”
Contingent workforce management is management of a workforce that has been employed on a provisional basis to complete a project. It has turned out to be quite successful model of employment in the past few years. The scope of contingent workforce or gig economy is set to widen and diversify on account of the digital revolution and emergence of advanced technologies like artificial intelligence.
The Covid-19 pandemic has altered the work culture of many organizations across the globe. The pandemic-induced shift has taken place in the style of management, place of work, type of employment, remunerative structure, and so on. Due to these changes, new avenues have opened up for management services which earlier weren’t that appealing. Contingent workforce management is one such example. Contingent workforce basically includes employees hired on a provisional basis to complete a specific project or role for which they have the necessary skills and expertise. Thus, contingent workforce includes all types of contractual employees such as freelancers, temporary workers, consultants, contractors, etc.
How Digitization Can Help Contingent Workforce Management Market
A market research report published by Research Dive has presented some startling facts about the global contingent workforce management market. The report says that this market was one of the very few sectors which showed resilience during the Covid-19 pandemic. In fact, the disruptions caused during the pandemic compelled business organizations to look for a flexible mode of employment which could help to fill up the vacancies swiftly. This prompted these businesses to employ a contingent workforce to sail through the turbulent times.
The Research Dive report further adds that the demand for contingent workforce, or gig economy as it is called, is expected to play a huge role in the IT and telecommunications industry in the coming period. This, however, depends on how quickly the gig economy jumps on the digitization bandwagon and augments the growth of the IT and telecommunication sector.
Today, from economists to technology experts and from geopolitical pundits to environmentalists, everyone agrees that data is the most important asset for any organization, be it public or private. This could be the starting point for contingent workforce management to keep itself relevant and slowly establish its paramountcy. Contingent workforce management or gig economy can gain the trust of the customers by keeping their data safe and using it for only those purposes for which the customer has given his/her permission. Leading companies such as Uber, Zomato, Ola, etc., have a sizeable contingent workforce and have a huge customer base globally due to the trust they have gained regarding their customers’ data management.
Digitization has ushered in a new age of marketing- digital marketing- which has quickly captured the attention of almost all sectors. Since digital marketing campaigns run for a specific time period, many organizations outsource this function to gig workers which increases the scope of contingent workforce management services. This is especially true in the case of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) which have their operations in developing economies of the world.
Many-a-times, it has been seen that the contingent workforce as compared to regular, full-time, employees have less educational qualifications. As a result, they get enrolled into a company on a lesser pay scale as compared to full-time employee, even if the project both are handling is the same. Digitization can help in this aspect as well; continuous vocational training through certification courses can keep the contingent workforce in line with the industries’ needs and enhance their remuneration prospects. Moreover, with holistic training and capacity building, the gig workers get the necessary understanding of handling any type of project or job, making them even more flexible which is one of the most important advantages of contingent workforce management.
Future Scope of Contingent Workforce Management
Almost all sectors are bound to get affected with the emergence of advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence. Many experts opine that with Artificial Intelligence will replace humans in employment and the scope of contingent workforce is poised to shrink in the future. However, this is a far-fetched conclusion. On the contrary, the scope of contingent workforce is, in fact, predicted to widen in Industrial Revolution 4.0 as it has been at the forefront of digitization and data-driven decision making. However, training and capacity building of gig workers so as to embrace this change is extremely important.
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