In Their Own Words: 5 Contingent Workforce Companies We’re Tracking in 2017 Sydney Lazarus - January 25, 2017 6:00 AM | Categories: Commentary, Services and Indirect Spend, Services Procurement & Contingent Labor Management, Solution Providers | Tags: L2, Technology Last year was an exciting one for the contingent workforce procurement market. This year, according to our resident CW/S procurement expert Andrew Karpie, is unlikely to be a massive breakthrough year. “For the most part,” he wrote, “the developments and trends that we have seen taking shape in 2016 will continue, and maybe accelerate or attract greater interest by procurement practitioners.” To keep the momentum going, we thought about a select few solution providers in this market whose next steps we’re anticipating; and, interested to see how they're trying to innovate, we shot over a simple question to them: What exciting things are you doing in 2017? Here’s what they said: Brightfield Strategies “In 2017 Brightfield is leveraging its accomplishments in natural language processing of job descriptions to services procurement by automatically structuring and summarizing the unstructured text of Statement of Work contracts,” said Brightfield president Jason Ezratty, “effectively reading all the key elements of the contract into a series of fields as though they were completed via dropdown menus.” “This powerful tool provides rapid visibility to services procurement spending segments, spending behaviors, and potential savings opportunities,” Ezratty continued, “especially when combined with Brightfield’s TDX benchmarking models.” Wonolo “2016 was a huge year for us, and 2017 will be even more exciting,” said CEO Yong Kim. “We believe that we are fundamentally changing the way companies are finding workers and getting their jobs filled and workers are finding jobs and making extra income.” One of the challenges that Wonolo is tackling is that of no-shows. “We are very keen on leveraging machine learning to predict whether jobs are going to be filled (given wage, job type, job duration, job start time, location) and whether jobs will have any "no shows" or reliability issues, which is a big problem with the contingent workforce,” Kim explained. “Our ‘Fill Advisor’ indicates likelihood of job fill, and our internal software also predicts whether a worker is going to show up on time so that someone else can fill the job if the worker is not going to show up for work.” Work Market “2017 will be a huge year for progressive procurement pros looking to make a mark within their organizations. Historically, the implementation of rules and corporate governance between procurement and various lines-of-business has been very painful, to say the least,” said Stephen DeWitt, CEO of Work Market, one of Spend Matters’ Providers to Watch in 2015. “Now, thanks to software like Work Market, enterprises no longer have to pay the price for having rules,” DeWitt continued. “Good supplier hygiene in the modern world is enabled by powerful software that automates how labor is vetted, provisioned and sourced. Work Market helps procurement professionals drive better adherence to corporate standards and better leverage their supplier ecosystem – all using simple and elegant cloud-based software.” Gigwalk “The whole idea that the majority of the workforce is going to be cobbling together ‘gigs’ in the future is overblown,” said David Hale, CEO of Gigwalk. Not everyone is going to be a freelancer, he explains, but the technology will “change how we interface with and schedule work.” So companies need to keep up. “Technologies like Gigwalk provide mobile tools that help companies manage their own large distributed teams and also seamlessly engage talent pools outside of the enterprise,” Hale said. “The on-demand model won't disrupt and replace most companies, but companies will definitely adopt on-demand technology to provide schedule flexibility options for their workforce.” Catalant “Procurement organizations find themselves in a critical position of helping an organization bridge an ever-growing talent gap,” said Catalant CEO Patrick Petitti. “The typical contingent workforce management system, MSP, and freelance management system might help you manage a specific type of external worker, but not the type that can address the business expertise, market knowledge, and specific high-skilled talent companies are increasingly struggling to find.” “In 2017, Catalant will be the only service that helps a company find the exact expertise it needs, when it needs it, regardless of whether that expertise is a highly skilled freelancer, a consulting firm large or small, a retiree of your company or a skilled expert inside of your company,” Petitti said. “Catalant’s proprietary algorithms, machine learning, and proven workflows will change the way a company thinks about getting work done.” If you need more guidance in navigating this emerging market and its disruptive technologies, read our free research paper: The Impact of Disruptive Technologies and Solutions on Contingent Workforce and Services Procurement. 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