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What A Contingent Worker Really Wants From Your Management Team

Posted by Louis Flory

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4/7/14 6:30 AM


For many businesses, variable production quotas are a reality. Particularly in the manufacturing industries, but in other industries as well, demand is subject to seasonal variance. Your business may require flexible staffing to meet flexible production targets. 

The contingent worker may be a part of your strategy to meet your staffing needs. Different types of temporary labor, freelance and contract workers all fall under the contingent worker title.

Managing the Contingent Worker

Managing a contingent worker is not dissimilar from managing a permanent employee. As a manager, your job is to motivate your employees so that they can do the job you need them to do. It is up to you to figure out what your workers need from you and to deliver it. These are the top five things that the typical contingent worker needs from you.


Your workers want to know that you notice them and take interest in their performance. Acknowledging both good and bad performance gives workers security, and helps you retain quality personnel. This is especially true for the contingent worker.

Read: Management’s Guide To Engaging Your Contingent Workforce


Your workers are not machines; they are individual human beings with intrinsic value. Treat them well by engaging them in two-way conversation. Let them know that you value their opinion by listening to and considering their ideas.


Establish a series of incentives for meeting production goals and other targets; these will demonstrate to all your employees that hard work is rewarded, and encourage them to work harder in the future. Set goals that are measurable and achievable to avoid frustrating your workforce with unreasonable demands.


The workplace should be a safe, secure place. When people feel good about coming to work, they are more likely to work harder. Take both visible and behind the scenes steps to ensure security, and make your workers feel safe at work.


One problem that is particular to the contingent worker is the fact that he or she often does not feel that they are truly a part of your business. Give all your workers, permanent and temporary alike plenty of chances to socialize with their coworkers. Take care to not have class divisions among your labor force and you will reduce conflict and increase productivity.

Give your employees what they want and need from you and they will be motivated to work hard for you and your business.

Read: Workforce Management Solutions—How To Obliterate Production Bottlenecks

Integrated Labor Force

Permanent employee and contingent worker alike contribute to your productivity. They are equally important to the long-term success of your business. All of your employees should be treated with respect, as an integral part of your labor force. When everyone works smoothly together, your business runs right. Contingent workers may not be with your company for the long term, but they must still be empowered to make your business perform at the maximum level. Treat all your employees equally with regard to training; every member of your workforce must be equipped with the knowledge they need to perform their job.

When you have a workforce filled with knowledgeable, motivated employees who know that they have your respect, your business has little choice but to succeed. Take steps to make this happen today.

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Topics: Contingent Workforce Management