Skilled gap to rely on “on demand” workers and freelancers

Skilled gap to rely on “on demand” workers and freelancers

Hyper-specialists to drive the next wave of enterprise growth

Credit: Dreamstime

The need for “on-demand” talent is on the rise with enterprises soon set to heavily rely on hyper-specialists, or highly-skilled employees with specialised skillsets, to fill resource gaps.

That's according to the Getting Trendy 2017 Report by Expert 360, an Australian online marketplace for consulting and contractor talent.

There’s no denying that Australia is currently facing a skilled shortage in the tech space. Backed by multiple reports, the Australian marketplace is finding new ways to bridge this skilled gap.

The report showed local enterprise businesses will increasingly rely on 'on demand' workers and freelancers to fill skills gaps and specialist roles. Close to 80 per cent of businesses surveyed said they are currently experiencing a skills gap and more than half said they plan to increase their use of contract and freelance workers to fill those gaps.

It found that nearly 50 per cent (47.6 per cent) of businesses said contingent workers will make up more than 20 per cent of their workforce within the next three years. 38 per cent of these enterprises said they will always use on demand workers to fill skills gap in the next three years.

This compares to just three years ago, where contingent workers accounted for more than 20 per cent of the workforce in 9.5 per cent of enterprises.

Furthermore, 48 per cent said around one-fifth of their workforce will be contingent in the next three years.

Expert360 CEO, Bridget Loudon, said executives are looking to bring in individuals who they know have successfully executed similar or the same work beforehand, from simple projects through to very complex campaigns.

“That process used to be inefficient and ineffective, but now, new technology platforms make it easier and more cost effective for executives to find needles in a haystack,” she said.

The findings also suggest that as Australian businesses look for better ways to compete in the global economy, it is on-demand hyper-specialists who will step in – more than 60 per cent of businesses surveyed say that specialist skills will be extremely important in the next three years.

Many of these specialist contingent workers may be utilised to bolster internal teams.

“With a significantly smaller market than that of the US or Europe, Australian companies often struggle to bring in highly-skilled full time workers. Accessing hyper-specialised talent in a way that can be easily scaled up or down is critical to competing on a global playing field.

“As the number of contingent workers continues to grow, we may also see a reduction in redundancies as businesses rely on short-term talent instead of hiring and firing full-time employees in line with the ebb and flows of business,” she added.

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Tags skills shortagefindingsskilled workersExpert360

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