Providing a program brand that projects a competent, repeatable quality service that your users can connect with and easily identify helps with the program’s ongoing success. Think of the brands you are drawn to. Whether it’s clothing, cars, hotels, food, phones, etc., your experiences with certain brands have earned your confidence — and therefore your loyalty. Your adoption of these brands as a “value ambassador” helps make the products or services successful.

The same should be true for your contingent workforce program brand. Your internal and external clients/stakeholders should adopt the same confidence with your contingent workforce program and become your brand “value ambassadors.”

A successful program will drive adoption and program expansion, which is critical. Successful adoption strategies will also help to create your program’s brand perceptions and perceived value. But creating the brand tends to be an afterthought, lost in the shuffle behind all the other moving parts of program implementation — technology, integrations, change management (training and project communication), cost and timeline. So how do you do it?

Seek help. If you have an internal marketing and HR department, start there. The marketing/human resource teams can provide insight and expertise. They have an understanding of your company culture and can possibly tie and leverage the program’s value to other company marketing initiatives and communication themes. This consistency can not only make it easier for internal clients/stakeholders to recognize, but can also have an important impact with engaging suppliers and contingent workers. Also critical, branding provides the program and the process with its own purposely defined identity and does not tie it to either the individuals within the program office, or worse yet, the technology or the MSP that is supporting it.

This is even more critical when a contingent workforce program has to consider implementing a change to the technology or MSP due to program expansion, scope or changing business needs. Having the program’s brand associated with either technology or the MSP can cause additional challenges and confusion both internally and externally, and could damage the brand value. Like it or not, corporate programs and policies have a brand and some are managed purposely and others are left on their own. Because of the inherent high-impact nature of the contingent work, this value perception phenomenon is even more important for the CW program.

If you do not have the advantage of your organization’s internal marketing or HR team assistance, take advantage of your co-workers and your supplier partners. Allowing them to participate in the creation of the CW program’s brand name/value themes will provide some additional collaboration between all the stakeholder parties and will provide all those involved with some sense of ownership with the value focus of the brand. Having that ownership can translate to some additional commitment for success as well.

Is all of this effort worth it? We believe it is, and to help support our belief, we would like to hear from those of you that have branded and marketed the contingent workforce program and recognize those who have done it really well.

We are excited to announce the Contingent Workforce Program Branding & Marketing Contest. Send us your program brand names and a little context as to how it was created and how the brand has benefited the program and/or the organization.. Awards will be given in the following categories:

  1. Most creative CW program name
  2. Most innovative marketing communication program
  3. Best 360 client and stakeholder feedback structure
  4. Best overall marketing program and strategy

Winners will be selected by our CWS Council members at our mid-year meeting June 14. Each winner will receive a complimentary pass to either an in-person or online CCWP Certification class.

Please send your submittals to: CWStrategies (at) staffingindustry (dot) com.

We will announce the winners in the June 29 issue of Contingent Workforce Strategies 3.0.