More than 90% of Hiring Managers Value Working with Freelancers, But Struggle to Source and Pay Talent

Stoke, a pioneer in the freelance management system that just closed its $15.5 million Series A funding round, is releasing the results of its study on how companies are leveraging the freelance economy. The research provides insight into how companies are leveraging freelance workers today, challenges faced, and the rising eagerness to harness the flexibility and value of freelancers – uncovering a major gap in preparedness when it comes to managing freelancers at scale.

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There has been a seismic shift in the way people work. Nearly one in three Americans are freelancing today, and more than 90 million Americans are expected to freelance by 2028. Companies’ demands for freelancers and independent contractors are at an all-time high, but most organizations are not able to equip managers with the required processes and tools to manage non-payroll workers efficiently.

Currently, 67% of senior managers in tech companies hire more than 30 freelancers in their department. While 81% expect that number to grow by at least 10% next year, two-thirds are managing their extended workforce using spreadsheets and emails.

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Most hiring managers are still finding it challenging to source the right talent and struggling to handle the back office overload.

  • Around half of respondents (48%) cite better recruitment methods as an integral first step to enabling better use of freelance talent.
  • A quarter of companies (27%) are looking for simplified finance and legal processes when working with non-payroll workers.
  • Approximately one in five hiring managers (19%) are interested in improved management for freelancers.

“While a record number of companies are increasing their reliance on freelancers, there are barriers preventing organizations from capitalizing on their non-payroll talent, building long-term freelance relationships, and getting more work done,” said Shahar Erez, Co-founder & CEO of Stoke. “By automating core processes such as invoicing, onboarding, and compliance management, companies can save valuable time and focus on other needs that are more critical to their business. We believe that by equipping companies with the right tools and capabilities to handle freelance management at scale, we can help them be more adaptable to the future of work.”

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