Two businessman talking over a desk

The impact of COVID-19 on contingent workforce management

The coronavirus pandemic has led to a complete overhaul of contingent workforce management solutions as HR and procurement teams begin to better collaborate to support the ‘better normal’ workplace.

A more joined-up approach to contingent workforces

In our recent survey of HR and procurement professionals, we found that 37% of respondents had completely reviewed how their business manages its external talent in light of Covid-19, with 26% implementing a more joined up approach to managing their contingent workforce. While this move to greater collaboration is a step in the right direction for what has long been a siloed talent strategy, the results indicated that there is still some room for improvement, with 21% revealing that different divisions had managed their own change.

Budgets and competition remain the biggest challenges

Our study – carried out during the recent CWS Summit: North America and the SIG Global Executive Summit – also revealed that budgets and competition for top contingent talent are the biggest challenges facing HR and procurement teams, cited by 47% of respondents.

Given the above challenges, it’s perhaps no surprise that contingent RPO is high on the priority list for the immediate future, with 58% of participants indicating plans to explore this sourcing route within the next two years. Encouragingly, though, total talent acquisition (TTA) is the biggest focus for HR and procurement as an all-encompassing approach to workforce management creeps up the agenda. While just 21% currently have TTA strategies in place, 72% indicated that they will be exploring this within the next two years.


Simon Blockley, CEO of Guidant Global commented on the results:

“It’s common knowledge that COVID-19 has been a catalyst for new and better contingent workforce solutions. As flexibility becomes the norm for businesses in light of the pandemic and global lockdowns, firms have begun to recognise just how valuable external workforces can be. And with a growing need to streamline costs, transparency of contingent spend has understandably been a focus for both HR and Procurement teams.

What is particularly promising from our survey, though, is the move towards a more joined up approach, not just between the divisions that are responsible for the contingent and permanent workforce, but the entire business. The fact that so many respondents are exploring a total talent acquisition approach suggests that the pandemic has pushed businesses towards developing a truly future-proof talent strategy.”

How useful did you find this article?
Thank you for your feedback!
5.0 / 5.0