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What Is On-Demand Hiring?

As an HR professional, you live and breathe at the vanguard of change and new trends in the work world, and have undoubtedly felt the seismic shifts in how people work and approach the concept of employment in recent years. In fact, if you’ve been in the business long enough, your job today may barely resemble what it was when you first got started. 

It’s no stretch to say that the old rules of work and hiring are drifting away, and are being reshaped and reimagined by a tidal wave of technological innovation and economic and cultural changes. One change that has emerged in recent years is on-demand hiring—and depending on your industry and business needs, it may drastically alter how you approach sourcing candidates and meeting the hiring needs of your company. Let’s take a closer look at what it is and what it may mean for you.

Massive advances in technology in recent years have led to what has been coined the “on-demand economy,” which basically means that today’s mobile, agile, digital work world and marketplace have empowered companies to meet the immediate needs and demands of customers by providing goods and services faster than ever before. The on-demand approach to business has spread across industries, and people on both sides of this economic model—both customers and companies—expect things to continue to go down this bold new path.

The on-demand model has also made its way into hiring. Today, the immediate staffing needs of businesses—whether it’s for a long-term project or just for a one-day gig—can be met by people looking for income opportunities of various shapes and sizes. What’s more, an entire industry of on-demand-centric companies with the goal of quickly connecting employers to available staff has risen up to take advantage of this new way of hiring.

Companies and hiring professionals are divided when it comes to the concept of on-demand hiring. Those who have chosen to embrace this new way of hiring are typically eager to stay on top of new trends in the work world and recognize the value and utility of being able to quickly meet their immediate staffing needs—often saving money in the process by keeping overhead costs at a bare minimum.

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Those who are more skeptical about it feel as if it’s creating legions of uncommitted employees who may have the requisite skills, but not the deep knowledge of a company’s history and workflow, to perform at the highest levels. They also argue that rather than being empowering to employees and providing them with greater work flexibility, it’s just another way to pay them less and not provide them with the benefits that typically accompany full-time employment.

Regardless of where you stand on the issue of on-demand employment, it doesn’t look like it’s going to disappear anytime soon; as an HR professional, it’s in your best interest to stay on top of the latest and greatest trends and continually reevaluate your company’s hiring strategies in order to best meet its needs and achieve your target goals.

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Eric Titner

Eric is a NYC-based editor and writer, with years of experience in career-focused content development across a wide range of industries.

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