Why Staff Augmentation

Why Staff Augmentation

Staff Augmentation

One of the most significant trends in today’s business is the dramatic increase in the use of contingent workers globally. This practice isn’t necessarily modern, and today’s contingent workforce manifests itself in many working models, the most common being staff augmentation.

A Flexible Solution

Staff augmentation is a powerful tool for any organization’s arsenal, but not many understand the different types of staff augmentation and how to choose the right model.  Finding the right talent, managing fluctuating workloads, and staying within budget can be daunting tasks for any organization. This is where staff augmentation comes into play, offering a solution that provides flexibility, agility, and cost-effectiveness.

Global Spend

Staff augmentation is incredibly common. The global staffing industry is estimated at $490 billion in annual spend.  Another source of staff augmentation is freelance/independent contractors (IC). There is an estimated 75 million freelance workers in the U.S. and that number is expected to grow steadily over the next decade.

Pros and Cons

Just like any organizational strategy, staff augmentation comes with its own list of pros and cons. It’s up to the company, hiring managers and project managers to determine whether this is the right model for their specific needs.

Pro – Experienced competent staff can quickly understand and add value to a project. Con: Some projects may require a higher level of contextual or institutional knowledge which could lengthen the time to complete and have added costs.

Pro – Can pull skills on a project bases quickly, rather than hiring new internal employees. Con – Not great for long term projects or skills required on a long term basis.

Pro – Can increase/decrease workforce on demand.

Pro – Can be used as ‘trial run’ for potential internal employees.

Best Practices

Clearly Define Project Requirements: Have a thorough understanding of the project’s scope, objectives, and required skill sets. Clearly communicate your expectations to the staffing provider, outlining the skills, experience, and specific roles you need.

Effective Communication: Maintain open lines of communication. Regular check-ins, progress meetings, and feedback sessions can help address any concerns promptly.

Clear Roles and Responsibilities: Define clear roles and responsibilities within the project team. Set expectations, deadlines, and key performance indicators (KPIs). Outline the reporting authority, and escalation processes.

Foster Collaboration: Encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing between augmented and internal staff. This helps to facilitate transferring of specialized skills, best practices, industry insights while creating an inclusive team atmosphere.

As the business landscape continues to evolve, staff augmentation will likely remain a valuable tool for many companies.  It is a powerful model that organizations can leverage quickly and respond to the changing business needs across many industries.

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