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In recent months I have been looking into online contactor marketplaces.  A contractor marketplace allows employers to connect with contractor talent directly online, eliminating the need for recruitment agencies. Therefore, the cost in this model is significantly lower.  Last year in June, Forbes posted an article called Manpower Tries To Catch A Web Wave where they talked about the challenges that recruitment agencies face and the emergence of online marketplaces. As companies look for new ways to reduce costs, these marketplaces are becoming more and more popular.  And as more people are becoming independent contractors, the supply of talent is growing steadily.

 

The leading vendor in online contractor marketplaces is Elance. Essentially what Elance does is match contractors with employers/jobs available. It also enables employers to monitor project status and pay only when the work has been completed to their satisfaction. Elance works with a number of companies to create sub-communities and groups which are typically for specific products or skills. The latest group that Elance created is for Xcelsius experts.  Here is how it works:

 

  • Contractors who are interested in participating take an online screening test to demonstrate their proficiency in Xcelsius. Only those who pass the test are admitted into the group.
  • Employers are able to easily find these group members or post jobs for which only group members can apply.
  • Employers can look for contractors in the Xcelsius group and create their virtual teams. However, they can also add their employees to the group. This is particularly helpful for consulting companies/ SI’s who have consultants “on the bench” for a period of time. So as an example, partner A could create an account and look for contractors to work on project XYZ but this partner could also subcontract his free resources to partner B across the country or across the world.

 

I find this model really interesting and I would like to hear from the community what you think. 

  • If you are a contractor who works with Xcelsius or a BOBJ partner, please check out the new group on Elance.
  • If you are interested in additional SAP related groups, please post your comments and specify which skill set or technology you’d like to see on Elance in the future.
  • Also, if you are already using an online marketplace to secure contractor talent, let us know about your experience.
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2 Comments

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  1. Sachin Guptha
    Hi Claudine,

    This is a very interesting topic. I never heard about online marketplace before. I am working in BI/BOBJ/BPS areas as an employee. Though I am not an independant contractor or an employer, I would like to see elance (I just found it- e-freelance is elance) enter into all fields (not necessarily SAP). This would help employers and also employees. This will totally eliminate all the unnecessary layers between employer and employee but for vendor. I would like to see comments of people who are currently using elance.

    Pretty interesting!!!

    Regards.

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  2. Yash G
    I am particularly interested in the model to fetch capabilities in markets like India. I see challenges both in online tests and data management. Do agree, it is a step up in strategic staffing.
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