The Art of Motivating Contingent Employees

Motivated employees are foundational to successful companies. Ensuring your temporary and contract workers are as motivated as long-term staff brings excitement, positivity, innovation, etc. to your company’s culture and stability to your bottom-line. While most company leaders understand that fact, many struggle with implementing it.

A review of Maslow’s Theory of Hierarchy sheds light on the subject. According to Maslow’s Theory, a tool used by company leaders to understand and apply ways to induce employee motivation, it (motivation) happens only after a meeting person’s five basic needs.

  1. Physiological: food, water, warmth, rest. From an employee perspective, this translates into salary – steady work for contingent employees and job security for full-time staff – all in a decent work environment that allows for sufficient personal care and breaks.
  2. Safety: physical and emotional. Items in this category comprise a safe place to work – proper equipment, tools, as well as protection from harassment, abuse, etc. It also can include PTO, healthcare benefits, and some form of retirement security.
  3. A sense of belonging: relationships, friends, the need to be part of the group. On the job, this need is met through communication that keeps employees “in the know,” and being part of a united team.
  4. Self-esteem: prestige, sense of accomplishment. Being able to work in an environment that fosters respect, recognition for a job well done, and contribution to the team; a comfortable space in which to work and grow professionally).
  5. Self-actualization: development, creativity, reaching one’s potential. The opportunity for professional growth within a company, challenging responsibilities, along with the appropriate tools, and a sense of independence.

Practical suggestions for motivating contingent employees

In reality, you won’t find these tips to vary much from motivating your long-term staff. In fact, that’s the first point.

  1. Respect: Treat contingent employees the same way you treat your long-term. Don’t stereotype contingent employees as “less than” permanent staff. There are multiple, excellent reasons to choose temporary work and they deserve the same respect as everyone else. Ensure that every employee knows they are a valued part of the workforce and contributing toward the company goals and mission.
  2. Onboarding: When you hire regular, full-time employees they undergo an onboarding process. They tour the facility, meet other workers, receive information on company policies, and rules and regulations. Don’t neglect his step when hiring a contingent worker. Onboarding fills a fundamental need for a person to feel welcome, which is an excellent start to a great working relationship.
  3. Training: It’s essential to provide the necessary training to contingent workers. They may be experts in their field, but you still need to provide the relevant training so they can hit the ground running.
  4. Recognition: It’s always a good policy to recognize staff who do a good job, including contingent workers. Make sure you publicly announce outstanding achievements of all team members. Include your temps in meetings and gatherings; give them a company email address – when appropriate, extend invitations to team lunches and company happy hours. By doing so, you build camaraderie among full time and contingent staff and make everyone feel important.
  5. Reciprocal Feedback: Open the door to feedback and welcome comments and critiques from your contingent staff. They can offer a different perspective and insight coming from a short-term position. Likewise, take the time to give them feedback. Even constructive criticism can provide an employee with a sense of value and help them grow.
  6. Fair Pay: Money is a consistent motivator. In some cases, partnering staffing company employ the placed contingent workers, but when payroll falls in your lap, pay your part-timers market wage – plus a little, for the expertise they bring to the table.
  7. Set an example: Starting at the top, encourage all your long-term staff to welcome and appreciate contingent workers as part of the team. Not only will it help motivate your contingent force, it will increase a sense of value among your long-term staff.

In summary, motivating staff is crucial to the success of your company, regardless of their employment status. Implementing these strategies will produce a happy workforce at every level, which will result in higher production levels, a pleasant work environment, and a team of happy workers. Motivation practices go beyond a raise or a simple pat on the back; to get the most, you need to give the most.

Lingo Staffing offers a custom approach to every staffing request. Lingo Staffing is a full-service staffing company that has an accurate understanding of what it takes to partner with a client and become a primary resource for a wide variety of staffing solutions. Every client’s needs differ, and Lingo adjusts and adapts services to meet those needs every time.

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