Historical data shows that the period after every recession sees a sharp focus on cost control and results in a contraction of full-time employment relative to an expansion in temporary staffing. We can see this trend has accelerated across a few industries which have experienced a high demand in temporary workers recently. The challenge of finding a high number of suitable candidates was exacerbated by the fact that recruitment agencies have had to adhere to the rules of social distancing and additional compliance checks. Employees working remotely and candidate interviews being conducted online have driven digital transformation. Onboarding and training have moved online and have turned into the new normal or business as usual. The benefits of this new normal are cost savings, time reduction and documented data trails. However, to benefit from the advantages of moving everything online, recruitment agencies need to make sure that they have the right systems in place.
Agencies can make the most of the new normal by having the facility to scale up. Be ready to place temps at higher volumes with strong systems in place. From a technological perspective, the whole world is “integrating” and “collaborating”. As your kids work around social distancing by collaborating on Fortnite, FIFA and Minecraft – (on just about any device you can switch on); the recruitment industry needs to get on board with cloud based, collaborative technologies that eliminate the costs of duplicated data entry, errors and delay.
Leading agencies embrace digital innovation across their own operations and across the supply chains they operate within. ENGAGE data shows that when candidates, agencies umbrellas, and hirers operate on shared platforms there is a profound increase in efficiency for all parties – at the cost of those still operating with whiteboards, excel, email and phones.
Whatever the “new normal” turns out to be, IR35 is in the mix short to long term. Hirers will carry tax liabilities for IR35 throughout the supply chain. They will demand real-time visibility of the engagement types and compliance processes used by recruitment agencies, umbrella companies and contractors below them. Agencies will need to demonstrate that their clients’ IR35 status determinations will be shared and adhered to throughout the supply chain, despite large numbers or fast churn. Shared systems with the capability to flag contractors’ IR35 status and even prove “gross to net” payments to candidates caught by IR35 will engender confidence. Platforms like ENGAGE will provide you with a comprehensive assessment of your IR35 risk. All you will need to do is assign a status determination to your positions and the platform will automatically assess your placement’s risk against worker engagements. You can gain visibility of a worker’s engagement through all levels of the supply chain. Even for those workers engaged via umbrellas.