Direct sourcing is a way to connect directly with independent contractors and engage them for project-based work. Rather than using a third-party service like a staffing or consulting firm to find talent, companies can source talent internally using their own resources. This approach helps to save time, money, and resources while often resulting in sourcing higher-caliber talent.
If your organization is looking to incorporate a direct sourcing strategy to engage independent talent, here are three steps to consider.
1. Choose a Direct Sourcing Strategy
The first thing to understand about direct sourcing is that a solution will differ depending on the organization it is being designed for. The size of your company, your industry, your talent needs, and your budget are all factors that must be taken into consideration. For example, one company might rely on a program that HR or procurement runs while another might use an existing vendor to perform a specific service in the process of engaging independent talent.
No matter what path your company chooses, it is important to learn the potential benefits of direct sourcing to build a successful strategy. From the perspective of independent contractors, direct sourcing—coupled with technology—allows them to search more quickly and easily for project opportunities that fit their skills and experience.
From the perspective of an enterprise, hiring managers can find and engage top talent who have the skills they need for a particular project. Direct sourcing can also offer many opportunities for cost savings through staffing flexibility, third-party markups, and independent contractor engagement.
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2. Secure Internal Support for a Direct Sourcing Program
When implementing a direct sourcing strategy or program, it is helpful to have internal support across your organization. When company leaders understand the benefits of direct sourcing and support implementation, it is more likely to be successful and adopted by employees.
Similarly, employees who understand why a program is needed and the benefits independent talent can bring to their team are going to be much more supportive of change. Educate employees about the purpose and role of independent contractors—especially if they haven’t worked with independents before. Answer questions they have and address their concerns. Make sure independent contractor policies and guidance documents are readily available and let employees know who they can reach out to if they have questions or concerns.
When obtaining internal buy-in, focus on education for both business stakeholders and managers. Talk to managers about how a direct sourcing program will help them reduce the amount of time they spend reviewing candidates and give them access to skilled talent on-demand. Get company leaders involved in the conversation from the start. Talk to them about the potential ROI of a direct sourcing strategy and how incorporating more independent talent into their workforce can help them achieve business goals and remain agile.
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3. Choose Technology to Support Your Direct Sourcing Approach
Technology is an important part in transitioning to direct sourcing. Direct sourcing technology and software can be used for tasks like automating onboarding, eliminating time-consuming paperwork, and recording worker classification information. Streamlining these types of tasks creates a more positive experience for independent contractors and managers alike.
Technology like online marketplaces can also play a big role in helping managers find the independent talent they want. Marketplaces connect independent contractors with available projects, allowing managers to search for and select the person they want to engage. An algorithm can help match independents to projects, and talent can also search for and apply to projects on their end.
There’s a lot of emerging direct sourcing technology to sift through, and it is important to take the time to make sure you choose the right tools for your needs. Companies like MBO who specialize in independent contractor engagement and compliance can help your organization put the right strategies in place to directly source high-end independent talent.
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