World – More companies using gig economy professionals: Korn Ferry

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The percentage of contingent or “gig economy” professionals working in organisations is growing and that growth is expected to continue, according to a global survey of human resource professionals released today by Korn Ferry International Inc. The reasons include cost savings, access to high-calibre talent and ease of managing gig economy professionals.

Sixty percent of the HR professionals surveyed said gig workers make up a larger percentage of their professional workforce than they did three years ago, and 42% said they plan on hiring more contingent workers in the future.

When asked why their organisations hire gig workers, survey respondents cited “access to resources for short-term projects” and “expertise we don’t have in-house” as the top two reasons. And nearly half, 48%, said these specialized contingent workers perform at a higher calibre of work on their projects than less specialized full-time employees; 46% said hiring gig professionals actually saves them money.

Despite the fact that many gig professionals work remotely, 67% of the HR professionals surveyed said they are confident they know what the gig professionals are doing on a day-to-day basis, and 42% reported these contingent employees are easier to manage than full-time employees.

When it comes to blending gig professionals with full-time employees, 66% of respondents work to integrate the gig professionals into the culture of the organization, with 59% saying these workers have a positive impact on culture.

“As freelancers, consultants and contractors become more prevalent, it’s important to keep in mind that the gig economy will not replace traditional models of work,” said Jeanne MacDonald, president of global talent solutions for Korn Ferry’s RPO and professional search business. “The key is to adopt a blended approach to talent acquisition and talent management, one that incorporates campus, contingent workers and full-time employees, and one that, in essence, makes the most business sense.”

The global Korn Ferry survey included 491 HR and talent acquisition professionals and took place in July and August of 2018.


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