In this new gig economy, companies have to think of creative ways to incentivize their contingent workers. If you’re working with freelancers and contractors, how can you be sure they’ll feel engaged with your company in the same way your permanent employees are? Raises and bonuses won’t cut it for these workers. Here are five incentive tips that can help you keep your contingent workers happy and engaged on the job.
Provide trust and ownership.
Your freelancer or contractor is looking for some creative freedom in how they handle the project. You can certainly dictate what the final result should be, but otherwise you can allow these professionals to handle the project however they see fit to get the product to you at the end of the project. Trust them with the task at hand.
Customize the incentives.
You can provide incentives to your gig economy workers, but customize them to the specific employee. If they value flexibility, offer that. If they like recognition, offer that. You can customize the way you incentivize working for your organization on a contingent basis to match the needs of each freelance contributor or contractor for your organization.
Focus on engagement.
Though, incentives can be a short-range strategy, many experts advise focusing more on engagement than individual incentives. Incentives provide a short-term boost, but they don’t provide long-term engagement. Focusing on engagement gives you more buy-in from your gig workers. Look at their motivations and use that information to provide the right environment for success.
Make an emotional connection.
While we’ve long believed that money talks, it really only whispers. What today’s contingent workers are looking for is an emotional connection with the work they’re doing. If all they wanted was a paycheck, they would have elected to find a full-time job within an organization. By working freelance or contract, they want to pick and choose the project to which they feel emotionally connected.
Review the shared values.
When thinking of ways to engage your contingent team, take a step back to look at the shared values between yourself and your team. What drew them to your project? What is the mission of your company and the project, and how does that align to the personal interests and passions of your contractor or freelancer? Make sure these are in sync to improve engagement.
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