• business-case

    The Business Case for a Direct Contractor Recruitment Strategy – Part 5

    Contractor Recruitment Strategy Part V
    In the previous chapter we provided an overview of the challenges and benefits of a direct contractor recruitment model.  In this chapter we will be discussing ‘Using Technology to Streamline the Direct Hiring of Contractors’.

    Using Technology to Streamline the Direct Hiring of Contractors

    A number of different tools can be used to join up the various elements of the contractor recruitment process.  Job board databases and social networks like LinkedIn etc. can be used to source contractors.  You can use an ATS system to help track and filter applicants.  A pay-rolling provider can be used to aid time-sheeting and payment.

    However, for an efficient, streamlined process you want to reduce the amount of different systems and tools you are logging in and out of.  The technology now exists to streamline the entire contractor recruitment process within a single cloud based system.

    >>Download the Full Whitepaper Here<<

    Elevate Direct – An End to End Contractor Only Recruitment Platform

    Elevate Direct has been developed as a tool purely for delivering the entire contractor hiring cycle within a single system.  On the surface it has two sides. Contractors are able to sign up to the platform, generate a profile, and get matched to jobs. Employers can log in to the platform to list their jobs, which then only get matched and presented to suitably qualified contractors.

    The system is flexible enough to be used standalone, or to complement your existing recruitment process. There are two main ways Companies use Elevate Direct:

    1)     As a Standalone Sourcing & Advertising Tool

    In the same way you might post ads to Job Boards or login to a CV database or LinkedIn to begin searching for candidates, employers can log into the Elevate Direct platform to advertise their requirement and begin searching for contractors based on skill, day rate, availability etc. Your job advert is then also circulated for free to a number of destinations, including major paid for job-boards, to attract additional candidates.

    As a standalone sourcing tool, Elevate Direct can easily be added to the arsenal of sourcing and recruitment tools an internal recruiter may be using.

    2)     As an End to End Contractor Sourcing & Recruitment Solution

    After sourcing candidates, recruiters have the option of using the full functionality of the

    Elevate Direct platform to engage with candidates to make/accept contract offers. This
    opens up the time-sheeting function which allows Elevate Direct to process contractor
    payments if you don’t wish to use your own timesheet & payment systems.

     What processes does Elevate Direct automate? 

    • Sourcing
    • Ranking of applicants
    • Work flow management
    • Time-sheeting
    • Payroll
    • Consolidated invoicing

    contract recruitment strategy

    How Does Elevate Direct Overcome the Obstacles to Recruiting Contractors Directly:


    A)    Automated Sourcing

    When a job is listed on the Elevate Direct Platform, the key criteria of the role such as Day Rate, Location and Skills (including how recently they were used) are compared against the entire database of contractors to determine initially who is suitable for your job. Employers are also free to search the database of contractors themselves, enabling instant access to new talent pools.

    Benefit: Reduced time to hire because the platform sources for you.


    B)    Automated Ranking

    After the initial skills and experience matching takes place, our smart technology scans the matched candidates based on their career paths and whether they are the type of contractor that your company tends to prefer shortlisting or hiring.This data is used to automatically rank the applicants for you, enabling recruiters to more easily filter through applications.  Even if a thousand applicants were to apply for your role, you can be confident that you only need to review those candidates automatically ranked at the top of the list.

    Benefit: Improved quality of hire as candidates are ranked on cultural fit.


    C)    Compliance

    By choosing to recruit your contractors directly via the Elevate Direct platform, you dramatically reduce the risk of co-employment issues.  Once a contractor has created their Elevate Direct profile they agree to our terms and conditions.  This also ensures the employer does not have to deal with or set up, multiple suppliers. You only deal with one, Elevate Direct.

    Benefit: Mitigation of HMRC compliance risks and consolidated supplier invoicing resulting in less paper work.


    D)    Workflow Management & Payroll

    Once you have shortlisted suitable contractors within Elevate Direct, you have the functionality to message them, invite for interview and offer a contract. Once a contractor accepts a contract offer, they then have access to the Timesheet module. Elevate Direct also offers its own payroll solution which is optional for employers to use.

    Benefit: Streamlined workflow and more control over your brand. By engaging with candidates directly you can ensure a positive candidate experience. By using Elevate Direct, employers do not need to log into multiple systems to search for candidates, approve timesheets, and operate payroll, all the functionality to attract and onboard contractors is available within a single system.


    E)    Reduced Costs

    By using technology to streamline the end to end recruitment process, the cost of processing a contractor is massively reduced.  By sourcing a contractor via the Elevate Direct platform employers benefit from paying hugely reduced mark-ups on day rates (typically down from 15-18%, to only 5-7%).  In addition to these direct costs, Elevate Direct users benefit from a number of indirect savings including reducing expenditure on other recruitment tools such as Job Boards.

    Benefit: Reduced cost per hire due to significantly reduced mark-ups and the elimination of additional indirect recruitment costs. 

     >>Download the Full Whitepaper Here<<


  • Contractor Signup

    The Business Case for a Direct Contractor Recruitment Strategy – Part 4

    In Chapter 3 we discussed the pro’s and con’s of the Traditional Contractor Recruitment Model.  Below, in Chapter 4, we take a look at what an efficient direct contractor recruitment model looks like, and the challenges faced with its implementation.

    The Direct Contractor Recruitment Model          

    To recruit employees directly in an efficient manner a recruiting/hiring manager needs to have a number of processes and technologies in place.  You need the skills and knowledge to source or market your jobs to the right people which may involve the use of referrals, career sites, CV databases, social networks, search marketing or job boards.

    >>Download the Full Whitepaper for Free<<

    You need to be able to deal with a higher volume of direct applications which may involve technology to support the wider recruitment process such as an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).  Interviewing, brand perception, candidate experience, these all take on extra importance when implementing a direct hiring strategy for permanent employees.  When it comes to hiring contractors directly, these challenges become further complicated by the additional steps in the recruitment process.

    For an efficient direct contractor recruitment model, you need to be able to take care of all aspects of the recruitment process, and encompass the operational needs of payroll, procurement, invoicing and timesheet management.

    Direct Contractor Recruitment Model

    Earlier in this paper we mentioned that some companies do employ a direct recruitment strategy for contingent hires.  Using a combination of sourcing, referrals and advertising they attract contractors directly and use a dedicated payroll company to process their pay.

    However the challenging nature of developing a successful direct contractor recruitment model has resulted in a level of resistance amongst companies aligning their contractor and permanent strategies.

    Below are some of the key obstacles employers will face when choosing to adopt a direct contractor recruitment model:

    Challenges to a Direct Model:

    • Sourcing & Attraction – Recruiting skilled contractors often requires access to niche networks.
    • Increased Applications – Dealing with the inevitable increase in applications means additional recruitment technology such as an ATS may be required.
    • Compliance – Employers cannot directly hire a contractor without potentially being liable for additional costs such as taxes, therefore to improve or increase compliance with HMRC, employers may prefer an agency to be an intermediary.
    • Payment – Companies who attract contractors directly typically need to have payroll service provider or preferred agency in place to process contractors.
    • Recruitment is Not Centralised – Line managers may be free to choose their own recruitment suppliers which can make implementing a holistic direct strategy difficult.

    In the next chapter we will look at how employers can use technology to overcome the above obstacles and really maximise the benefits of a direct contractor recruitment model.

    >>Download the Full Whitepaper for Free<<

  • Contractor Recruitment Technology

    Why You Should be Thinking About Contractor Recruitment Software

    The Recruitment Landscape is Changing

    Independent  professionals now represent 15% of the UK’s 30+ million people in work. In 2013 the number of businesses hiring freelancers increased by 46%. Research from the United States suggests that by 2020 half of the US workforce will be freelance.

    Top performing graduates as well as seasoned professionals are beginning to see freelancing as a bona-fide career option.  However, although recruiters are familiar with recruitment tools such as job boards and LinkedIn, few are aware of new age recruitment tools and platforms tailored purely for hiring on-site contractors and freelancers directly.

    Given the increasing importance of recruiting the contingent element of the workforce, we’ve decided to highlight some of the important benefits and features to look for in contractor recruitment tools.

    Streamlining Administrative Tasks

    Good contractor recruitment software automates time consuming administrative processes across the recruitment lifecycle; from matching candidates against your job specifications, to timesheeting, to payroll, all within a single system.  Taking away the monotony of admin, means you can focus your time on what’s really important, speaking to great candidates.

    Increasing Productivity  

    Cloud based contract recruitment software gives recruiters all-hours access to detailed and up to date information, enabling them to work on their own terms and contact the best candidates as quickly as possible.  Mobile friendly systems further enhance a recruiter’s ability to review candidates and schedule interviews on the go.

    Finding the Best Talent Quickly

    When it comes to hiring contactors, it’s not unheard of for a job ad to be posted in the morning, the first applications to arrive at lunchtime, and for interviews to be scheduled in the afternoon. By leveraging advanced data science and machine learning technology, systems such as Elevate Direct automate the sourcing of contractors so you can find the best candidates quicker. Your job specs are analysed by the system and then matched against an existing contractor talent pool to instantly provide you with a shortlist of suitable candidates.

    Access to ‘talent pool software’ functionality dramatically reduces your time to hire, which is extremely important when hiring contractors to help with unexpected increases in the workload, and for projects with tight deadlines.

    Saving You Money

    Using a new piece of software no longer has to be expensive.  Cloud based free contractor recruitment software like Elevate Direct requires no downloading and very little training. By enabling you to recruit contractors directly, good contractor recruitment systems will eliminate or significantly reduce huge mark-ups on day rates.  Depending on the sector you operate within, the mark-up on day rates you will pay hiring a contractor via a recruitment agency could range anywhere between 8-32%.

    The right contractor recruitment software can also reduce media costs by providing free distribution of your jobs to external platforms such as job boards; helping to attract a wider pool of talent when needed.

    Streamlined administration, faster time to hire, reduced media costs, increased productivity, and reduced day rate margins will help your business save significant costs when it comes to hiring contractors.

    Improved Workforce Planning

    Specific contractor recruitment tools provide valuable insight into your contractor population. They can provide analysis and reports into contract duration, day rates, skills, who would be suitable for an upcoming project etc.

    Delving deeper into the data allows companies an holistic view of the contractor market;  which skills are in short supply, which companies and industries supply successful contractors to you, what type of career path have contractors that fit in with your culture taken,  if you have a retention problem, which companies are attracting your contractors.  All of this data in conjunction with the security of access to niche contractor talent pools, allows employers to better plan their contractor workforce around future projects.

    Above are just some of the reasons why we think you should be thinking about contractor recruitment software, and how you can adapt your talent attraction strategy to hire more contractors directly.

  • Startup Hiring

    The Startup Hiring Challenge & How Elevate Direct Can Help

    There’s only one way startups and small businesses can survive in the long run – be the most flexible and adaptable businesses in any economic climate. Some experts argue that the only way to sustain these strengths is to employ less permanent staff such as contractors and freelancers, to fill skills gaps around business projects

    The practice has become more popular in the past few years, which is reflected by the increasing number of individuals taking up the contract route. Hiring contractors on a project basis enables a startup to grow at their own pace and only recruit skilled individuals when they’re needed. But even though it sounds like a simple solution, finding and hiring the right contractor can be difficult, especially if you’re not familiar with recruitment practices or simply don’t have the resource to find contractors yourself.

    Why should you use contractors in the first place?

    Finding suitable permanent candidates with the skillset you need is often challenging, especially if you cannot guarantee quick career progression or the benefits of a larger brand. Most startups have limited resources that may not be enough to hire top talent permanently; this is why contractors can be a great alternative as they can be hired for a limited time or on a single project. They offer the skills you need for the duration and price you can all agree on.

    Global employment trends indicate that more and more highly skilled professionals are deciding to take the freelance route – economic slowdown in several sectors with decreasing job benefits and security, combined with the freedom to work on their own terms has led many to swap permanent positions for s successful freelance career

    The freelance route is particularly tempting for those on top of their game – client feedback and recommendations directly ensure repeat work, if you are able to identify and reach out to such high quality contractors quickly, you can really benefit from a rich set of skills and experience.

    Using Recruitment Agencies vs Recruiting Yourself

    Large companies have the resources to fully leverage all recruitment options including head-hunters.  Hiring a contractor involves several elements.  You need to find them, sift through applications, payroll them, process timesheets and invoice your supplier or contractor.

    Due to these complications typically when hiring contractors firms just use a recruitment agency that will take care of everything.  In return for finding and placing the contractor the agency will charge a fee  on top of the contractor day rate that the client has to pay.

    Depending on which industry or niche you are hiring in, the average margin an agency makes on the day rate could range anywhere from 12-30%.  For SME’s and Startups this can prove a significant cost, but if you had the ability to attract candidates directly and streamline the payroll, timesheeting etc within a single solution, it would be a major advantage.

    Elevate Direct – The Contractor Recruiting Solution for Startups

    The technology now exists to enable CEO’s of small businesses looking to hire skilled contractors to do so on their own terms.  Elevate Direct is a new web based platform with no upfront costs, where businesses can get their jobs matched against suitable contractors. The system automatically shortlists suitable candidates so employers can engage with them directly. Companies such as Tandem Systems, SQA Consulting, Eteach and Photobox have all used Elevate Direct to hire the perfect contractor.

    By automating the search for contractors for you, very little time needs to be invested on your side. Once you log into the system and place a job, it compares your requirements against thousands of contractor’s profiles and gives you an instant shortlist. The shortlist is based on their day rate, availability, skills, experience and it even factors in cultural match, based on the career path of the contractor.  This aspect of the system saves business owners hours searching for and sifting through CV’s

    In addition to finding the candidates, the platform can also process the back-office payrolling, time-sheeting and invoicing, ensuring your recruitment cycle is a smooth ride from start to finish.  While we mentioned earlier the margins recruitment agencies can make on a contractor’s day rate, by using technology to automate the process, Elevate Direct users only pay a 5-6% markup instead. As a rough example, If you’re looking to hire someone at a rate of around £400-£450 a day, by using Elevate Direct you would be saving almost a £1000 a month in fees compared to hiring the same contractor via an agency.

    In a super competitive world where having the right talent makes all the difference, a Startup or SME’s can’t afford to lose out on time or money.  Elevate Direct’s efficient automated platform saves you from dealing with costly agencies and streamlines the administrative hassle of hiring contractors directly.

  • Contractor Signup

    Contractor Sourcing Tool Highly Commended at Global Recruiter Awards

    Elevate Direct Global Recruiter Awards

    London, 2nd July 2014 – Elevate Direct, the contractor sourcing tool that enables employers to   automate their sourcing of contractors, has been ‘Highly Commended’ at the UK Global Recruiter Awards 2014, within the ‘Best Innovation’ category. The awards held at Café de Paris in London on the 26th of June, recognise significant achievements across the industry.  Judges emphasised that Elevate Direct was “A unique platform built for the direct engagement of contractors”.

    Dan Collier, CEO and Co-Founder of Elevate Direct highlighted that “This is the second innovation award this year we’ve been shortlisted for. It’s great to be getting such industry recognition considering we’ve not been around for very long.  Our pace of technical innovation is only going to increase this year.  We’re just about to release an updated ‘cultural rank’ algorithm to further bolster the automated matching process and save recruiters even more time finding their perfect contractor.  With increasing numbers of people choosing a freelance or contract career path, we’re meeting more and more employers exploring options like Elevate Direct that allow them to migrate their contingent recruitment away from agencies in the long term”.

    About Elevate Direct

    Elevate Direct is a direct recruitment platform that enables employers to hire contractors directly.  It can be used as a stand-alone sourcing tool that automatically matches contractors to an employer’s job, or as a full end to end solution that not only sources that candidates for you, but takes care of the payroll, time-sheeting and invoicing back office processes.