Organizations call a Temp Staffing company when they want employees but not in full-time roles. They may need the talent for a fixed period of time or they may want to try before they offer the full-time role. At times, organizations need certain tasks done but the tasks are transactional in nature and not at the core of what they do.In such a case, they get the help of a Staffing company to find them people who are employed by the Staffing provider but carry out the job under the direction of someone in their organization. Question arises how to quantify the engagement and evaluate if the value generated for the organization is optimum.
Talent mix in terms of Full-Time Roles and Contract Roles has been changing in India over time. It varies across industries and companies. A decade ago, full-timers were 30x of temp-employees; today, it is 20x or lesser. As the share of contract employees has been on the rise, the bills of the Staffing company are in the radar of the procurement department. There have been attempts across industry sectors, particularly the multi-national companies who spend huge dollars to reduce service fees of Staffing agencies. Globally, large Staffing companies generate a gross margin of nearly 20% while the same companies generate a meagre 5-7% in India. Heads of Finance and Procurement argue, there are agencies who offer competitive bids with a set of promise which match the best. It is no-brainer that they should choose a partner who offers the lowest cost and promises the best service levels.
Do you have a framework to evaluate if the ground realities match the promises?
All ethical providers do the basics right such as payrolling, remittance of statutory dues and payment of wages. However, the Staffing partner stands at a significant position when it understands the business of the client organization and solves their challenges through its staffing processes. The context of each organization is unique to itself. Sometimes, an organization might have providers who do not deliver on the hygiene issues of issuing offer letters, running the payroll, calculating statutory dues and so on. In that context, all the organization looks for is quick-fix of the basics. For some other organization, it could be the quality of talent, setting expectations of the Temp employee, orienting the Temp employee on business ethics, productivity improvement and so on.
As the context keeps evolving in an organization, the Staffing partner needs to keep discovering those and adapting them. Hence, the parameters of evaluation must keep changing. Hence, all the stakeholders in the client organization have to collaboratively evolve a set of metrics against which the ability of the partner must be evaluated. We call this sustainability metrics that tells us if the partner has the necessary flexibility and bandwidth to keep adjusting its focus on the long term. Accordingly, the Finance and Procurement Team must evaluate if the partner will go the distance or lose steam along the way.
It is not enough for the Partner to understand the context of the client organization and demonstrate the adaptability when the focus of the program changes. Speed of action matters! Organizations want their partner to not only adapt but also demonstrate the speed of response on a consistent basis. Let us say, the focus of the program is recruitment. In this case, the client must evaluate the agility by tracking the Turn-Around Time to fill a vacancy and the success rate of candidates presented. If the focus is retention, in all likelihood, the Staffing provider will run a one-to-one employee connect program. The agility metric in this case will be program coverage and action taken based on the insights gathered in the employee connect program.
It is essential that the Staffing Partner is agile and brings the prowess to go the distance. There is another dimension when done well, delivers the best value to a client. That is efficiency in cost, time and effort. When an organization works deeply with the staffing provider, there is mutual understanding and trust. Commitment to each other increases and hence, honest conversations take place. In the setting of a business to business (B2B) engagement, value for money is one of the most important governance parameters.
The vendor gains efficiency as the client organization invests energy and time in making the engagement effective. They win a bigger share of the client’s wallet and do not mind passing on a part of the gain to the client. Apart from the cost advantage, the client gains good-will, reduces the risk of failure and assures itself of the best efforts to fulfill its requirements.
Do you combine the power of these 3 metrics : sustainability, agility and efficiency?