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Three Ways to Find Independent Contractors

By Steven Calhoun on Nov 12, 2020 1:10:34 PM

Confusing rules around worker classification might have kept you away from engaging with independent contractors before, but now that the regulations are being made more clear, maybe you’re ready to try it.

At Veryable, we believe in the freedom and flexibility offered by independent contracting; so much so that we built a platform for connecting independent workers with businesses who need on-demand labor. We’ve helped businesses find independent workers to meet unexpected changes in demand since 2017, and we want to help other businesses reduce lead times and increase profits.

To help you unlock flexibility for your business, we’ve outlined the top three ways to find independent contractors:

 

Finding independent contractors on traditional job boards

While job boards are typically used for employment, you can also post on places like Craigslist or Indeed to find workers who view themselves as contractors. This requires the administrative burden of combing through resumes and scheduling multiple interviews, but the popularity of these sites is a draw for many job posters and candidates alike.

You’re likely familiar with the process, but for comparison’s sake, we will review the steps here. With traditional job boards, you can outline the details of your work opportunity and the pay you are offering in your posting. Then interested workers can respond with resumes and other required documents to compete for your opportunity. After that, you would review these resumes to pick who you believe are the most qualified candidates and contact them with more instruction.

Finding contractors this way can require a significant investment of time and energy, due to the large number and variety of other employment opportunities being posted on these platforms.



Finding independent contractors through traditional staffing agencies

There are traditional staffing agencies that can find temporary workers for your business. These agencies typically pay the workers as agency employees, handling the administrative burden of managing their payroll and benefits. These costs are covered in the fee charged to you, which can be more than 40% higher than the original wage you offer the worker.

Staffing agencies typically find workers using a mix of their established networks and the same resources that you as a business would have at your disposal. The value that staffing agencies bring is doing the legwork and handling the administrative burden.

One important thing to note, however, is that you might have to enter an agreement with the staffing agency and fulfill a certain amount of usage of the agency’s candidates. Plus, you give up some of your control over worker selection to take advantage of a traditional staffing agency’s solution. When working with staffing agencies, you lose much of your control over reviewing applicants’ qualifications and cannot easily form a relationship with the workers you like so you can offer them a position later if one becomes available.



Finding independent contractors using on-demand labor platforms

Another option is to post your opportunity to an on-demand labor platform. On-demand labor platforms are marketplaces to connect independent workers with businesses with work opportunities. Workers using these platforms are looking for flexible work, can rate businesses, and can be rated by businesses.

There are platforms that have workers for a wide variety of industries, like Instawork, and there are platforms like us at Veryable that focus on a narrower segment (for us, that’s manufacturing, logistics, and the supply chain). 

To find an independent contractor using on-demand labor platforms, you typically create a business profile and post the details of your work opportunity to the platform. Then, workers bid on the opportunity and you browse the offers, review worker profiles, and select who you want to work the opportunity. With a typical on-demand labor pricing model, you would pay the labor platform, which would then pay the workers. This way you don’t have to worry about handling those transactions. 

Finding independent contractors in this way is usually faster than the other methods available, but does still require some work on your part to select the workers. This is a positive if you want to be involved in selecting qualified contractors, especially if you want to build a relationship with your preferred workers so they might bid on your opportunities more in the future.

Regarding the proposed new DOL regulation, workers using an on-demand labor platform meet both of the new core factors for determining worker classification as an independent contractor.




Getting started with independent contractors

Business needs change rapidly in today’s unpredictable marketplace. The flexibility offered by independent contractors can increase efficiency by saving money on overtime, giving you labor only when you need it, and bringing you motivated individuals whose performance defines their career trajectory. Independent contractors work to uphold their own reputation because their work prospects depend on it.

Now that the outlook on engaging with independent contractors is favorable again for many businesses due to the recent clarification of the Department of Labor’s worker classification regulations, it’s a great time to explore how you can optimize your labor for more competitive operational efficiency.

We’ve seen the use of on-demand labor improve gross profit by 77% for one client, which reduced their lead times from six weeks to three days. If you want to engage with independent workers to increase efficiency in your manufacturing, supply chain, or logistics operations, take the next step by exploring what on-demand labor is and how it works. 

Steven Calhoun

Written by Steven Calhoun