What is Flexible Labor?
The skilled labor workforce is aging faster than the younger generation coming in, resulting in a shortage of labor for skilled trades that often require years of training and certifications. This shortage is driving up labor costs across the industry.
Even under normal circumstances, staffing and scaling up large construction projects can be a headache. Large-scale infrastructure projects that require skilled and general labor are anything but predictable. Safety is a top concern, coordination and project management is complex, and keeping the right number of workers on the job is an uphill battle.
And if 2020 taught us anything, it’s that budgets and priorities can change quickly—and with healthcare and government guidelines to consider, it has proven to be even more challenging to predict workloads week to week and month to month.
Here’s where flexible labor comes in. In this post, we’ll take a look at five key benefits of a flexible labor market to employers.
1. Lower Overhead
One of the most obvious benefits of flexible labor is the cost savings it offers—and with budgets being squeezed in every way, this savings is more important than ever. A partnership with an on-demand workforce solution allows you to spend less on hiring and recruiting while reducing payroll and back-office administration costs. By supplementing or replacing your workers with a flexible workforce, you can cut costs on the following:
- Unemployment insurance
- 401K administration
With an increased cash flow, the savings reaped from working with flexible labor can free your company up to invest in more long-term needs.
2. Access to Top Talent
One of the advantages to staffing with flexible labor is broader access to talent possessing the skills you need to get the job done safely, on time, and on budget. Flexible labor often brings specialized skills for a variety of projects, undertaking training and certification to bring skills and expertise to your job. When hiring flexible labor, you’ll enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that the work will get done—without needing to staff internally.
3. Increased Productivity
Hiring flexible labor helps you avoid some of the inevitable dips and spikes that result from staffing up projects to scale—and winding them down after completion. If you work with a flexible labor staffing company, you’ll eliminate the cost fluctuations that can plague construction projects with multiple complexities. You’ll also have access to reliable backups if you experience any employee turnover or low attendance rates. If a worker doesn’t show up a few days in a row, it’s easy to fill their spot from a broad worker bench.
4. Efficient Spending
Conditions and top priorities change day by day and hour by hour—which makes predictable workloads a bit of a pipe dream. If a few people don’t show up for work, project managers can end up scrambling to fill headcount, often coming up short and pushing deadlines back. This can result in cost overages—and sometimes even in safety risks. With flexible labor, you’re only paying for what you need, when you need it. And your dollars can go farther.
5. Support for Hiring & Recruiting
It’s costly and time-consuming to always be looking for the right workers to staff your projects. You need to advertise positions available, interview candidates, check references and certifications, and project manage the entire hiring and onboarding process. By working with flexible labor, you outsource all of those hiring and recruiting activities to a trusted partner, freeing you up to tend to more high-priority activities.
In addition to the benefits to employers, flexible labor offers benefits to the workforce as well: more autonomy and flexibility, more opportunities, and a chance to learn new skills and earn certifications. And perhaps the best benefit to workers is the guarantee of a steady paycheck.
Skilled workers are our country’s backbone—building the infrastructure we rely on, such as energy, highways, and bridges. Moving towards a more flexible labor market will result in greater efficiency of spending as it becomes easier to match workers with companies. There will also be more fluidity as workers move away from hard-hit areas towards new opportunities. Workers develop new and more modern skills when they switch industries and/or locations.
If you have flexible workforce needs, we’d love to talk with you.
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