Look out. There’s a new kid in town.
For decades, the term “permatemp” sent shivers down the spines of Connecticut executives. Most of them equated interim, contract or project work with failure – failure to land a permanent job, that is.
But times are changing. In recent years, a new breed of worker has arrived on the business scene. Dubbed “supertemps,” these top-level managers are jumping off the corporate ladder in order to further their careers and enhance their job satisfaction.
Collectively, supertemps have changed what it means to be a temporary or contract employee. These accomplished executives, equipped with their ivy league MBAs, work on a temporary or consulting basis because they choose to. According to a recent Harvard Business Review article by Jody Greenstone Miller and Matt Miller, project-based executives are growing in number – and are on the verge of changing how business works.
Gone is the stigma associated with temporary work among the corporate elite. Today’s smart leaders are now trusting temporary executives and professionals to do mission-critical work. What’s driving the shift?
- For talent, project-based work has become more attractive than the alternative. Technology has made it easier than ever to connect in meaningful ways, corporate job security is dying on the vine, and professionals want a better work/life balance.
- As more professionals choose temporary work, companies find ways to accommodate them. Moreover, leaner management teams (due to a lengthy recession), a lack of interest in paying for plush benefits packages, and a VUCA operating environment make temporary solutions more compelling for corporations.
- New technologies, coupled with a developing market for high-end talent, are driving transaction costs down and challenging assumptions about which management skills and professional talent belong inside versus outside the organization.
According to the article, the trend is rapidly gaining steam:
- In 2011, McKinsey research found that 58% of U.S. companies expect to use more temporary arrangements at all levels in the years ahead.
- Sixteen million Americans are working independently today, according to research by MBO Partners. That figure is expected to rise to 20 million over the next two years.
In other words, supertemps are on the verge of breaking into the mainstream. A few simple changes, such as portable health care, kinder tax rules for independent contractors, and a willingness to change our thinking about talent management, would cause a proliferation of professional temporaries.
As a Connecticut employer, it’s time to learn how your company can benefit from using professional temporary and contract workers. A.R. Mazzotta Employment Specialists is ready to help. We can work with you to intelligently deploy supertemps (including mid-level managers, engineers and accounting professionals) with highly specialized skills to:
- complete mission-critical projects;
- train your core staff;
- capture additional business;
- test new business concepts;
- and capitalize on new opportunities as we emerge from the recession.