Contingent Workforce and Services in 2018 and 2019 (Part 1) – Out With the Old, In With the New

Our contingent labour workforce and services industry expert, Andrew Karpie, has recently published two very good articles on his favourite subject, the wonderful world of temporary procurement staffing and services, the technologies that support it and the trends he has seen and expects to see this year.

The first looks retrospectively at the biggest changes in 2018 – especially those market developments which he describes as “impossible to ignore,” including events concerning ADP, WorkMarket, Coupa, DCR, Beeline and Upwork.  He pinpoints 2018 as a pivotal year of change in the market, whether that is spawn from technology developments or the industry embracing innovation and change more; he does believe though that it is a sign of a structural change for the industry. Read more on this in 4 Seismic Events for Contingent Workforce/Services in 2018.

Then in his second post he turns his thoughts to 5 Areas for Services Procurement Professionals to Watch in 2019, in which he advises practitioners on the things to keep their eyes on to avoid being caught unprepared. Specifically he refers to changes with regard to: Sourcing and Management of Complex Services, Independent Contract Workers/Services Micro-providers, Digital Networks of Providers, Blockchain (Not Bitcoin), and more on industry structural developments.

To give a sprinkling of his conclusions from each analysis:

“Even as procurement solutions try to enable organizations to get their arms around ‘enterprise-wide’ spend (including CW/S), total talent management is emerging in a variety of ways, including the management of all human capital (including CW/S) under a CPO (that is, a Chief People Officer, not the other one). Technology and various kinds of external (non-traditional supplier) platforms now make possible decentralized, direct access to and purchasing of contingent workforce and services in various ways that can challenge traditional centralized governance models.”


“We analysts (and we think, many procurement practitioners) are extremely good at looking at the trees (e.g., describing them, counting them, costing them, categorizing them, etc.). But -- particularly now, at a time when so much is going on -- it’s crucial to look at the big picture (i.e., in which the forest = the industry) and how it is changing (gradually or rapidly) … In industry analysis, sudden, far-reaching changes are often referred to as tipping points. It’s not clear if there are any tipping points ahead and, if so, at what time they might occur.  But we are detecting an increase in seismic activity in the space … change is occurring at the fundamental level of industry structure (and once this starts to happen and fissures start to appear, the process will likely continue — often in unpredictable ways).”

Next up today we'll be hearing from some UK-based industry experts in the contingent workforce and services supply space. So do tune back in or look out for tweets @spendmattersuk with links to the discussion.


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