Sean Barclay
Vice President

Sean Barclay leads the US Eastern Region for Procom and is charged with the ongoing development of staff and clients across the eastern half of the US. Starting his tenure with Procom in 2004, Sean has worked in the staffing industry for over 25 years. Sean has a very active role in Procom's US compliance issues and a strong focus in contingent workforce management.

Mr. Barclay is actively involved in local civic organizations as well as local youth sports teams with his with three boys. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sean Barclay

Vice President
Sean Barclay

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Managed Services Programs: Is an MSP right for me?

The world of work continues to evolve – quicker than it ever has before – and competitive organizations are increasingly investing in the power of a contingent workforce to become more agile in these disruptive times. As employers everywhere are using more forms of contingent workers, it’s likely that your organization is also getting on board with the same transformation.

According to McKinsey, up to 30 per cent of an organization's workforce in the U.S. is made up of contingent workers, with employers having unprecedented access to a talent pool of 42 million of them. And while the rise of a flexible talent provides many benefits, it also leaves employers grappling with the hurdles of managing the many complexities that come with these types of workers. For answers, organizations committed to a more strategic approach to contingent talent management are turning to a Managed Services Program or Managed Services Provider (MSP) as an effective resource.

If you’re considering investing in a Managed Services Program or are interested in learning how an MSP can help optimize contingent workers to drive real business value across your organization, the following insights will help you make an informed decision.


What's an MSP?
Today, Managed Services is one of the fastest growing outsourced talent acquisition solutions, with Everest Research Group reporting that the global MSP market surged 10.1 per cent between 2015-2016, with experts predicting the solution to outpace global economic growth.


Why do organizations partner with an MSP? 
As tech and globalization continues to drive business strategies, it’s critical for employers to become more agile, and a contingent workforce is the widely-adopted answer to bridging skills gaps and driving both growth and innovation. At its most basic delivery level, an MSP will help an organization easily streamline and manage its entire contingent workforce program by improving efficiency, controlling costs and mitigating unforgiving fines, penalties and reputational damages associated with compliance risks. 

While early MSP models maintained a focus on process improvements and cost savings, more mature MSPs, however, are now seeking ways to increase access and delivery of high caliber talent while reducing time to hire. To do so through the use of technology stacks,  MSPs are leveraging direct sourcing solutions for greater access to talent pools and niche skills, sourcing alternative acquisition resources like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other initiatives that increase savings while ensuring quality talent engagement and retention.  


Different types of MSP models
Typically, MSP programs fall into one of these models:

Vendor neutral: All MSP vendors have equal opportunity to fill a position within a specific time.
Master vendor: A Preferred or Master Vendor is given preference to fill a position first but must release the role to other vendors if they fail to find talent within a specific time.
Hybrid: This type of model will include elements of the first two programs. 


MSP drivers, MSP focus and benefits
For most organizations partnering with a Managed Services Provider, there are seven key drivers that are aligned with specific operational challenges. These drivers include:

1. Operational challenge: Minimizing risk of non-compliance
MSP focus: On/Offboarding with contingent workforce audits and rate compliance visibility.
Benefit: Improved compliance, including rate compliance and worker on/offboarding compliance; better worker classification audits to minimize co-employment risks.

2. Operational challenge: Controlling rogue costs related to spend
MSP focus: Cost control.
Benefit: Greater visibility into costs using vendor performance metrics to ensure effective negotiations and development of sourcing strategies.

3. Operational challenge: Drive for improved performance and cost efficiencies
MSP focus: Closer supplier management with access to benchmark rates.
Benefit: Increased contingent workforce quality and performance with reduced time-to-hire. This is a result of supplier base optimization and requisition optimization through hiring manager feedback on services and formal Service Level Agreements (SLAs).

4. Operational challenge: Sourcing hard to find talent
MSP focus: Developing new sourcing models.
Benefit: Support in implementing technology in conjunction with delivering process change.

5. Operational challenge: Speed of change and large ramp up of worker volumes
MSP focus: Agility to support peaks and troughs of contingent worker needs.
Benefit: Outsourcing the MSP program can be a more effective way to manage business cycles.

6. Operational challenge: An increase in complex operations
MSP focus: Souring optimization to support diverse needs.
Benefit: Scaling your contingent workforce program to new markets where internal knowledge may be limited.

7. Operational challenge: Managing VMS technology and integrations
MSP focus: Service and technology support.
Benefit: Significant operational changes can require a new solution as it remodels its blended workforce. An MSP will support these tech changes across the entire contingent workforce delivery.

Beyond these key drivers, competitive organizations are also turning to an MSP in order to build on their employer brand and leverage the use of predictive analytics to ensure a better contingent workforce program with access to niche skills.


Is an MSP right for me?
An MSP will require organizations to have a minimum amount of contingent worker spend in order for the program to be successful and self-sufficient. When deciding whether or not an MSP is the right solution for your organization’s needs, there are first some basic and more complex factors to consider. First, it’s critical to understand how much contingent workers are currently costing your organization. It’s a unique number to individual employers, yet can be difficult to account for, as nearly 60 per cent of contingent worker costs is unaccounted for in the average organization.  You’ll also want to know how current buying is being done for the various elements of your contingent workforce and what controls are in place to manage the current program.


Additional questions on your checklist should include:
• Has my contingent workforce program outgrown my current management strategy and are my needs become more complex?
• Am I securing contingent workers in the time frame I need to?
• Do I have clear visibility into contingent worker spend?
• Have recent policy changes made me concerned about compliance?
• Am I engaging more contingent workers now than I have in the past, and do I plan on securing more in the future.


The role of a trusted MSP partner
A trusted partner should be committed to advising on the best solutions available to meet an organization’s business goals and to delivering innovative services that transform how they acquire and manage talent. This is done by listening to an organization’s specific needs and tailoring a solution that delivers both short and long-term value across an entire contingent workforce program. 

Your MSP partner will also help manage and mitigate risks associated with operating a contingent workforce. If you're interested in engaging contingent talent, or want deeper insights into how to manage the risks posed by your current program, download our free whitepaper: A Checklist for Contingent Worker Risk:

Contingent Workforce Management

Direct sourcing: Designing a program that works for you

They go by many different titles: contingent workers, gig employees, freelancers, consultants and contractors, but regardless of naming, they all serve the same purpose in providing organizations with flexible, skilled staffing solutions to help employers quickly respond to market changes and demands.

In an effort to save on cost, better manage talent and regain control over their recruits, organizations have become increasingly more comfortable taking on some or all of the contingent worker engagement process for simple or frequent openings within their organizations.

The practice of engaging contingent workers directly is known as direct sourcing, and while it's true that direct sourcing can save organizations money, the opposite can also be true if the company doesn’t have the proper resources in place or a formal program to manage the process.


Making Direct Sourcing Work for You
According to the World Economic Forum there is a world-wide shortage of skilled workers which makes the process of sourcing and recruiting talent that much harder. Having a program in place that gives you immediate access to a pool of skilled, proven workers has many obvious benefits, not the least of which is a reduction in ongoing recruiting fees and shorter down-times.


Designing Your Own Direct Sourcing Program
The best direct sourcing programs usually complement other recruiting practices rather than replace them altogether. And programs can vary greatly based on the individual organization’s needs and available internal and external resources.

Below is an overview of the five big decisions companies must make when designing their own direct sourcing program, from the informal to the fully-developed:


Informal programs are usually managed by a hiring manager who sources contingent workers directly and often at a higher rate card than necessary. This can happen when the hiring manager has a particular candidate in mind and is more interested in quickly getting a resource in place, rather than opening the direct sourcing process to competition and potentially lowering the rate of pay for the selected contingent worker.

Most often, however, a direct sourcing program model will involve some kind of internal recruitment team, an applicant tracking system (ATS) to manage candidates and an approved rate card.

It’s important that whatever model you choose, there is some structure to it and discussion around the five big decisions. Otherwise your direct sourcing program may end up costing you more time and money than if you had continued to outsource to an external staffing vendor.

For all models, using a third-party service provider to manage the paperwork for your directly sourced contract workforce will help mitigate risk and make your job easier. A good provider:

• Will manage contract administration,
• Be knowledgeable in the latest payroll, benefits and employee/contractor status regulations,
• Can recommend process improvements,
• Ensure compliance and meet submission deadlines to government agencies.

If your organization is considering adding a direct sourcing program to your talent acquisition strategy or would like to learn more about complimenting your current model, download our free whitepaper: How to Optimize Costs with Directly Sourced Contractors

Contingent Workforce Management

Understanding contractor classification types in Canada

The digital transformation is not only changing the way companies do business, it’s also changing the way they use talent to get it done.

Contingent Workforce Management

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