Mavenlink Report ‘The Changing Face of the Modern Workforce’ Highlights Surge in Demand for Liquid Workforce Across Industries

To Drive Profitability and Grow Their Business, Professional Services Organizations Increasingly Turn to Contractors, Gig Workers, Freelancers — and Discover a Need for Technology to Better Manage Them

Mavenlink, the leading provider of cloud-based software purpose-built for professional services organizations, announced the release of its report, “The Changing Face of the Modern Workforce.” Available now, the report examines how and why people-powered organizations are increasingly using on-demand workers to fill gaps in their employee base, and the different skill levels required for various sectors. Ultimately, the data points to the need for innovations in technology to help build and manage these teams to achieve greater profitability and business growth.

Demand for liquid workforce hits high point as organizations strive for efficiency

Gains in efficiency emerged as a main driver for hiring contractors among 71% of respondents in the finserv sector, 66% in the technology sector and 50% in the marketing agencies sector. And, while contract and freelance work has been on the upswing the past few years, COVID-19 has certainly accelerated demand. Indeed, amid economic uncertainty brought about by the pandemic, organizations have moved toward leaner operations in favor of a more scalable, on-demand workforce. In fact, 57% of respondents say that COVID-19 has led to their increased use of contractors.

HR Technology News: Kessler Foundation Grants Prepare Jobseekers With Disabilities For Post-Pandemic Opportunities

Still, roughly one-third (31%) of those surveyed indicated that finding qualified contractors clearly remains a challenge, perhaps because of outdated or inadequate processes for identifying and selecting skilled contractors.

“People-powered organizations have historically struggled to find and manage a distributed workforce, using point solutions or antiquated technology that was built for a different era,” said Ray Grainger, CEO, Mavenlink. “Now, as the use of contractors is increasing and on-demand workers have become even more critical to lean operations, it is imperative for organizations to adapt their processes and technologies accordingly.”

Different sectors, different skills requirements

Today, on-demand workers are used to fill a range of different roles, with some organizations requiring specialized skill sets for mission-critical work. In fact, 91% of respondents indicated they anticipate an increase in the need for special skills over the next 12 months.

HR Technology News: Equable Institute Finds A Majority Of Public Workers Aren’t Provided An Adequate Path To Retirement Security

Mavenlink’s report found that requirements for specialized skill sets among contractors vary according to sectors. For example, 44% of respondents in the finserv sector require five or more years of experience, while only 24% of those in the marketing agency sector look for contractors with more than five years of experience. This may be attributed to the highly regulated nature of the finserv sector, as compared with the more creative nature of the marketing sector.

Complexities of managing liquid workforce demands right technology

As the liquid workforce becomes more important for organizations, there is more riding on finding — and then effectively managing — the right contractors for the jobs. However, 84% of those surveyed believe their organization has a technology gap that affects successful management of liquid resources. In fact, 70% of respondents still use spreadsheets for managing their contractors.

“The increased reliance on a dynamic workforce, compounded by 94% of respondents indicating that managing a contractor is different than managing an employee, is driving demand for purpose-built tools for professional services,” said Grainger. “The ability to support a liquid workforce is critical in today’s networked economy.”

HR Technology News: National Association Of Workforce Boards Launches AI-Powered Career Navigation And Learning Platform