Don’t blink or you may miss it! As Summer 2014 sprints to the finish, the realization that it will soon be “back to school” time, then Halloween, followed quickly by Thanksgiving and Christmas/Chanukah. If you – Mr. or Ms. Workforce Planner – don’t want to be left wondering what happened to the goals for 2014 while watching the ball drop in Times Square, now is the perfect time for evaluating the year-to-date progress of your workforce plan to ensure you’re meeting with your stated goals regarding your flexible workforce; contingents, contractors etc. Here are some factors to consider.
Risk Assessment Goals & Compliance:
Have you adequately implemented and enforced replicable processes for:
- Standardized supplier policies supporting proper worker classification?
- Consistent engagement practices including background checks and
- Compliance with insurance requirements?
- Consistency in contract adoption?
If there is uncertainty about the extent to which any of the above goals has been fully realized, it may indicate the need to perform a supplier audit, leveraging the expertise of your Managed Service Provider (MSP) provider. If the data needed to gauge the efficacy of these goals is questionable, it may indicate the need to reconfigure (or at least tweak the configuration) of your Vendor Management System (VMS) tool such that there is better visibility into both internal and external compliance with the goals enunciated by your workforce plan.
Cost Savings & Avoidance
Perform analyses to determine if your markup management policies are succeeding so as to avoid the discrepancies and un-leveraged spend that can put a hurting on your bottom line cost savings. Staying abreast of pay rates and markups being received by workers and suppliers helps assure workers are being fairly compensated at market rates, which keeps workers happy and turnover rates low. Be sure to confirm rates are properly benchmarked to avoid the spend creep that occurs when a program pays premium rates for non-premium services.
Also, it is a good time to review co-employment and tenure policies and your program’s compliance with the stated guidelines. Ensuring the policies are followed strictly can help an organization avoid penalties that can run into the millions!
Assess whether or not your program is encouraging your team to think outside the box with respect to sourcing and recruitment. It’s not that there aren’t plenty of candidates available to fill most positions today. However, with respect to more competitive skill sets, is your program doing enough to attract and retain candidates in high demand fields? Are you leveraging the brand equity of your organization as much as you can? Are you leveraging the intelligence gathered through your contingent labor utilization (which often provides a keen indication of where permanent positions recruitment sourcing challenges and opportunities are)?
A critical, introspective assessment of your recruiting strategy outside of tactical, day-to-day functions can be informative and help identify areas of strength to build upon and weakness to improve upon.
Work with your solution provider to perform automation level reports and measure the output against Service Level Agreements (SLAs) for your technology tool. Levels below what an agreement requires of VMS automation can result in compromised visibility that can result in significant ramifications in a number of critical areas. Visibility is the lifeblood of a successful workforce management program, yet it is often the easiest item to overlook. Take this opportunity to look beneath the hood and make sure your technology is properly tuned.
If you spend one work week performing this type of year to date program assessment, the effort involved will most certainly be outweighed by the benefits produced. No time like the present and the clock is running down!