What Can RPO Do For You?

Posted by Christopher Dwyer

I’ve spent considerable time at this media site discussing the evolution of contingent workforce management: the evolution of the “contingent workforce umbrella” and its associated technology and solution offerings, even the means in which organizations can leverage next-generation strategies to improve upon their management of traditional temporary labor, complex contingent labor, and independent contractors.

One of the ever-changing attributes of contemporary contingent workforce management is the notion of total talent management, an idea I spoke about last year. This concept builds on the idea that human capital management and contingent workforce management programs can not only learn from each other, but build on each other’s processes for maximum effectiveness of an enterprise’s total workforce.

Taking the idea of HCM and CWM integration a step further, the contract talent industry now requires a solution like Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) to aid in the development of talent engagement strategies and overall talent management efficiencies. As our workforce becomes more blended, so will the strategies, processes, and solutions that are required to manage both traditional and contract talent.

We’ve outlined three major ways that RPO can be a driver of value within the contingent workforce continuum:

  1. Remember how talent is the #1 focus for our industry? RPO is there to help. The major driving point of any RPO solution is enabling an easier, faster and more effective means for recruiting talent. RPO solutions were designed with talent acquisition in mind, supporting the typical enterprise’s need for high-quality, top-tier talent across a spectrum of industries. Applied to the contingent workforce world, where talent has become a primary focus…well, it makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? Not to mention that…
  2. …total talent management is a strong possibility when the powers of RPO and VMS / MSP are combined. Any effective total talent management program requires both the talent acquisition prowess of RPO and the contingent workforce management aptitude of both VMS and MSP solutions. Total talent management necessitates pure visibility into a variety of aspects regarding traditional and contract talent beyond the simple spend, supplier, or employee-specific attributes. These solutions, working in conjunction, can paint a vivid picture of how all employees (on both sides) contribute to all corporate goals, projects, and initiatives.
  3. RPO can expand enterprise talent pools and contribute to a more robust talent development process. End-to-end RPO solutions typically offer strong capabilities for finding, engaging, sourcing and interviewing / screening talent. With so much of a focus in the contingent workforce industry on this “talent war,” there is an added precedence on ensuring that contract labor is the right fit for a specific project, role, or task. Most RPO solutions can readily handle the laundry list of processes required for managing the pre-project talent acquisition portion of contingent workforce management.

Last year, Kenexa, an RPO provider and also an IBM company, launched its ‘Smarter Workforce’campaign, a concept driven by a full lifecycle of ideas tied together to manage, encourage and drive value out of enterprise talent. Fueled, in part, by IBM’s larger ‘Smarter Planet’ campaign, Kenexa’s core offering under the ‘Smarter Workforce’ notion is largely driven by its ‘Journey Wheel,’ which helps its users attract, motivate, and empower its employees.

Allegis Group Services, a longtime provider of Managed Service Provider (MSP) services, also has an end-to-end RPO platform that actively assists their users develop a proper talent acquisition strategy, as well as manage a variety of processes under the talent management umbrella (including screening, consulting, and sourcing). AGS’s RPO offering is often tailor-fit to each client to ensure that every user’s talent management needs are addressed regardless of industry, function, or role.