RPO, MSP and Continent Labor Contracts Gaining Ground

In my April 16 blog “An RPO and MSP Combo: the Best of Both Worlds,” I wrote about the value of workforce solutions that are rooted in both RPO and Managed Service Provider (MSP) services to meet the dynamic and evolving needs for both contingent and permanent employee hiring. We’re now seeing an increasing number of these types of contracts being inked, and some providers are partnering to gain the breadth of offerings needed to win to-be-awarded deals.

Recently awarded contracts include:

• SourceRight Solutions’ – originally an RPO provider – multi-year deal with Siemens for provision of contingent labor procurement programs in the U.S.

• An MSP and RPO agreement between AMN Healthcare and Hendrick Medical Center

• Alexander Mann Solutions’ three-year recruitment, contingent workforce and employer branding contract in the U.K. with aerospace and defense engineering firm Cobham

Recent partnerships and M&As for the RPO/MSP combo include:

• The RightThing with ZeroChaos to provide contingent labor services alongside RPO. The RightThing, which was always considered a pureplay RPO provider, partnered with ZeroChaos to enable it to provide a broader range of recruitment solutions in today’s moving-target hiring marketplace

• AMN Healthcare acquiried Medfinders for its clinical workforce managed services program

• SourceRight Solutions and Hays, per their strategic alliance announced in 1Q10, launched WorldSource, a new service offering to manage and integrate global RPO and MSP programs. (And SourceRight Solutions also further expanded its own MSP offering)

The primary driver of escalating contract and partnership activity in this HRO segment is clear: as companies remain cautious due to continued low consumer confidence and ongoing market uncertainty, they are hiring more temporary employees and utilizing more contingent workforces than on-boarding new full-time hires. And let’s not forget buyers’ increasing desire to keep their portfolio of service providers to a minimum, particularly when in the same service line.   

The bottom line is that vendors and buyers both win with the right workforce combination that best meets clients’ organizational objectives. I believe we will continue to see additional pureplay RPO specialists looking to partner to provide MSP and contingent workforce solutions to meet continued demand. And while contingent workforce solutions can be used in any industry, I believe the nature of seasonal demand and spikes in volumes will drive more of these types of contracts in healthcare, pharma, manufacturing, retail, technology and defense.

Gary Bragar, Senior HR Outsourcing Analyst, NelsonHall

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