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Does Sustainability Extend To The Talent Pipeline?

In the Pursuit of ‘New, Green, and Better’ are Firms Leaving Behind Sustainable Talent

It’s no secret that consumers show a marked preference for environmentally friendly and sustainable products. Large corporations around the world are falling over themselves to demonstrate their commitment to the environment. Unfortunately, in their quest for sustainable practices in one area, they run the risk of eliminating the sustainability within their talent pipelines.

Blame the harsh economic climate or the increasing commoditization of work, but some organizations have trended into toxic talent practices. They’ve swapped talent development for bringing in third party contractors, training for firing and getting someone else, and relationship building for outsourcing. The results can be seen in firms that are stagnating in place or “suddenly” having a talent crisis. The reality is that by understanding the rise of the contractor space and the business case for internal talent development, even firms in crisis can build sustainable talent pipelines that work in the modern age.

Independent contractors are one of the fastest growing worker pools in North America. Industry practice group MBO Partners estimates that there are 16 million freelance or independent contractors in America alone. Most are between 30 to 49 years of age, and more than half hold a college degree. Some 47 percent of this pool are male, and 55 percent say it was their own proactive choice to be an independent contractor. With an average annual salary of $52,600, more than 60 percent report that they are extremely satisfied with their work choices and wish to continue to work independently.

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