In this ever changing digital world of business, not having the proper staff on hand for technological solutions would be a huge mistake. Though you may be well aware of this, many small business owners find it to be costly to afford the projected salary and benefits for full time, in house staff. One traditional IT employee could set a company back thousands of dollars and on a small budget, it could create problems. As business owners strive to stay ahead of new technologies and platforms, they often work with non-traditional workers which can be just as effective as in-house staff without the economic expense.
What are Non-Traditional Workers?
Non-traditional workers or employees that aren’t on the payroll as full time staff have been an effective solution for small business owners. They can seek the assistance of highly skilled individuals without the need to foot the costs of employee taxes, health insurance, retirement benefits, and other related overhead costs. Business owners have the means to work with these professionals for as long as they see fit without the pressure of having to budget their income month after month.
Sound like something that might work for your business structure? Here are 3 of the most common non-traditional workers and how they might be of service to your small business:
1. Temporary Workers
Likely one of the older concepts of “non-traditional workers” is temporary staff. Typically hired with the help of temporary staffing agencies such as Extreme Technologies Inc, temporary employees are hired on an as needed basis. As with most non-traditional workers a temporary employee does not work for you, but instead works for the staffing agency. A small business owner looking for someone to set up the company’s networking systems and software might hire a temporary IT professional to handle the task.
How the Process Works: Basically, an employer would need to find a staffing agency within their area specializing in IT professionals. They would discuss their needs with the staffing agency, go over the hourly rates, and determine when they’d like the professional to start. From there, the recruitment office would look through their list of IT professionals to see who has the best skill for your needs. They would then set up a contract for the temporary employee to work with your organization for as long as you see fit.
As long as your budget allows and as long as your company has a need from the temporary IT professional, you can continue to pay them for their services. Once the project is completed or your budget no longer warrants the space for another employee, you can simply end the agreement with no further obligations.
2. Independent Contractors
Next on the list are independent contractors. While you may have thought of contractors as someone you’d call for a home improvement job, this is not the case. Unlike temporary staff that works for the agency, contractors work for themselves. Depending on their niche or specialty within the IT industry, they are best suited for helping small business owners with projects lasting about 3 months to a year.
How the Process Works: With this process, you would be responsible for finding a hiring the contractor. You can generally find individuals looking for work through websites and other career platforms. When you’ve found the right candidate, you will draw up a contract that will determine the project you want them to work on, how you’ll manage them, the period of time you wish them to work from as well as the rate you’re willing to pay. Contractors will work on site until the project has been completed in full.
Last on the list of non-traditional workers is the freelancer. Like contract workers a freelancer is an independent worker. They are a combination of a temporary employee and a contract worker in that you can use them on the as needed basis, project base, or contractual basis. Freelancers are often great for small projects that might include developing your company’s website or updating social media platforms. The difference however, between a freelancer and a contractor is that freelancers may have multiple clients they’re working for while a contractor works exclusively on your work.
How the Process Works: If you were looking to hire a freelance worker again you’d be responsible for finding them, interviewing them, and ironing out what your needs are. In this case, the freelancer determines how they will charge you for the project and a contract is often drafted to protect both parties. Freelancers can be used on the bases that are best suited to your budget and immediate needs and termination of their services typically warrants 30 days notice (unless otherwise specified in the contract)
As you can see each of these solutions for non-traditional workers can save small business owners a lot of money. They each can be used within a budget that works best for you for a time period that works within the needs of the business. Whether you intend to hire a temporary, contracted, or freelance employee they can all be beneficial in helping you take your business to the next level, without the often high costs of hiring full time IT staff.