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The Contingent Workforce

The definition of employee is changing. Today, who and what a company relies on for productivity and performance to get work done can range from full-time employees to contractors, freelancers, or even artificial intelligence. At WTW, we’re creating new value propositions to engage this network and drive high performance.

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Contingent Workforce Management – how to get there


The shift away from the full-time employment model is raising new questions about the role of organizations in engaging contingent workers and the risks involved. The level of urgency in tackling this topic largely depends on the degree of impact the contingent workforce has on your organization.

Among the greatest challenges for organizations in managing their contingent workers are (i) not having a common definition of contingent workers and (ii) not having access to consistent data on the contingent workforce.

To address this, we aggregate data to complete observations and impact analysis on contingent workforce utilisation, risks to be managed and applied in target operating model.


Being able to decide which work is to be completed inside the organization versus externally becomes a strategic issue, as the right decisions can deliver significant value to an organization. Workforce planning moves beyond traditional headcount issues and involves matching projected work demand with projected talent supply within the context of the business lifecycle.

During the Alignment phase, we use a Strategic Workforce Planning framework to define the go-forward contingent workforce requirements. We also set the target operating model and protocols for managing this workforce.


Our research shows the Return on Investment of an evolved Employee Value Proposition (EVP) and its impact on engagement in a traditional employment setting. However, the EVP is not entirely appropriate for non-employee contingent workers as their concerns differ from full-time employees.

A distinct Contingent Value Proposition (CVP) is therefore needed which reflects the contingent worker experience and the expectations of the hiring organization. Collectively, the EVP and CVP establish the talent value proposition for the organization and the workforce it is engaging.


Plans should be made to communicate and implement the new contingent management approach among leaders who will have a role to play in its effective delivery, and for contingent worker engagement.

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The Contingent Workforce PDF .7 MB
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