For the past few years now, there’s been a big emphasis on employee engagement – and for good reason. Per Gallup surveys, about 70% of Americans are disengaged at work. This is alarming considering greater employee engagement has been shown to translate into greater productivity, improved corporate performance, and higher customer satisfaction.
Given this dismal state of employee engagement affairs and the ever-growing use of contingent workforce resources, business leaders must also question the level of engagement in their outsourced workers.
Contingent workforce engagement can be a significant blind spot that can erode business value and competitive advantage. Case in point: research shows companies experience value leakage ranging from 17% to 40% of the annual contract value over the lifecycle of outsourcing contracts.
Strategic supplier relationships are becoming increasingly important for companies to achieve their business objectives and strategies must be put in place to drive value and optimize these operations. To this end, it’s imperative to put processes in place to bridge the outsourcing-engagement gap.
In recent years, organizations have seen widespread adoption of “cognitive procurement” -the application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to support the optimal buying of goods and services. Now, the same data-driven technology is being used to facilitate outsourcing relationships, interweaving AI and analytics into outsourcing operations. This is enabling companies to gain insights necessary to inform leaner and more profitable outsourcing strategies while helping organizations also achieve improved engagement within their contingent workforces.
Using people analytics, organizations can tap into contingent workers’ computing and application usage to measure and analyze data to discern productivity trends and traps. The sophisticated software automates the collection of the digital signals that workers emit – and combines them with powerful analytics that equips senior executives with reporting and analysis. The reports can then be reviewed by managers and workers to see where there might be issues, which can then be addressed.
Continuous review and feedback are at the heart of driving engagement. Now, collaborating on goals and improving performance backed by data has never been easier as the data-driven reports generated bring transparency to the intersection of outsourced work and workers. Organizations by their very nature are changing organisms, so having the ability to perform analysis in near real-time is game-changing.
As well, this approach effectively does away with the “outsourcing black box” which is necessary to build sustainable value-added partnerships. When companies and contingent workforce staff can align strategies, goals, and objectives through collaboration, mutual respect, and continuous communication, all parties can forge a common mission – that’s engagement. The resulting outcome is the bridging of the outsourcing-engagement gap for leaner and more profitable operations overall.