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Reviving the External Workforce

Thought Leadership

I grew up in the Midwest during the 1970s, where we often experienced tornado warnings. The knowledge that a powerful and potentially devastating storm was fast-approaching had the power to move people. There was an escalation protocol that became instinctual when we heard the blaring tornado siren — grab your family, pets, flashlight, and portable radio, then head to basement. Once the storm had passed, the damage was evaluated and neighbors came together, rising to the challenge of rebuilding communities that often surpassed what had been there before.

The Covid-19 crisis reminds me of those storms. Now, though, we procurement and HR professional must spring into action, sheltering our employees and external workforces. We also need to build something better, so once this has passed, we will be stronger and ready for the next crisis that we will certainly face in the future.

External workforces are exceptionally vulnerable right now. The very nature of being contingent means projects can be scaled back or canceled with little warning, having significant financial impacts on workers, their families, and communities. One of the very best ways to protect against these substantial workforce disruptions is by adopting tools and establishing processes that allow your company to quickly identify and reconstitute these essential workers once a crisis has passed.

Workforce management technology – specifically VMS systems – should be optimized to remember and communicate with previously-engaged talent, consolidate the procurement process, and ultimately re-engage the very workforce that was released. This certainly has enormous benefits to the displaced worker while delivering competitive advantages to your company. Organizations that recall talent because of well-maintained relationships are much better positioned to revamp project timelines, recover budgets, and most importantly, demonstrate trust and compassion for the individuals impacted.

While total talent management has evolved over the last few decades, this pandemic is bringing unexpected clarity to what it means for modern companies. Having a system in place that allows your company to remain agile, quickly expanding or contracting workforces based on internal and external influences, is paramount. This is equally true — and advantageous — for the contingent workforce. Having avenues to quickly regain hourly and project-based work can bolster financial and personal stability for the people so many of us have trusted with our critical tasks and activities.

We will recover from our current crisis. But there will be another alarm at some point once this dust settles. At VNDLY, our desire is to make sure companies have the workforce management systems in place that help them recapture the talent they had to let go. During this time when we’re all facing significant business struggles, we’re here to support our clients through every challenge they face. Let us know how we can help now and into the future. Email us at info@vndly.com


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