As programs expand in scope and encompass more and more worker types, providing a formal concierge service to guide engagement managers through the CW program process can ensure happy — and compliant — program stakeholders.

The idea here is for the concierge service to formally assess an engagement manager’s business requirements and then connect them to the talent solution, process and sourcing channel that cost-effectively delivers the highest-quality talent.

A complex framework. Typically, a CW engagement manager with a talent engagement requirement will need to sort through the many talent service options available to them, from a long-term, full-time hire, to traditional staff augmentation, to an SOW/services solution. A CW program concierge/guide would step in to direct engagement managers through the  process of deciding which is the best talent solution option for them.

A talent engagement service type is a framework for how you engage a worker or CW service company. There are several criteria that can influence the utilization of each engagement type. Typically, this is something about which the CW program’s concierge service would be the go-to advisor.

How it works. With the emerging complexity of CW solution options and talent sourcing channels (see chart above) available to CW engagement managers, providing advisory knowledge to the best CW service to engage is becoming a CW program requirement rather than a bonus. Numerous supply chain vendors in the marketplace are now offering concierge service solutions. The concierge service helps clarify the established and emerging talent sourcing channels, including traditional staffing partner, SOW/services delivery, direct-sourcing and on-demand/online staffing.

Benefits. There are some important benefits for engagement managers and the CW program itself when executing an upfront, concierge advisory service. Some of the key ones are as follows:

  • Proper application of CW solutions to best meet the quality delivery requirement of the engagement manager’s business need.
  • Proper classification of the talent engaged, reducing multiple misclassification risk consequences.
  • Tactical competitive execution of the CW engagement in terms of speed, cost-effectiveness, risk mitigation and quality delivery performance.
  • Strategic workforce planning knowledge in understanding future CW talent resource needs in the execution of an engagement manager’s business plan and projects.

The setup. Typically, a concierge service sits in front of the standard CW program operating process, helping to execute a needs assessment and then develop and execute the required CW solution. This talent solution advice will then drive the engagement manager into the best talent solution option and process to meet the business need and requirements.

For example, if the talent engagement is a long-term, strategic core role then a full-time hire might be recommended and the manager is subsequently connected to the full-time, talent acquisition process managed through an applicant tracking system. Traditional, short-term talent requirements for specific skill set swill be directed to vetted CW program staffing partners that are managed in a VMS-controlled service solution. A hybrid solution may also be constructed where the talent is engaged as a CW solution, but over time and experience, a full-time role is created via a conversion process.

Concierge-type services are not actually new; it has been a key practice for HR to strategically and tactically support managers’ needs in effectively managing talent requirements. In some organizations, where the use of CW talent is significant, the HR business partner roles have been augmented by dedicated CW business partners to provide advisory support specifically for CW talent engagements. Over the past decade or so, some organizations and VMS technologies have made important efforts in automating this concierge advisory services to varying degrees of success.