Flexible layer of workforce as structural and strategic instrument

For most organizations, getting their workforce flexible is a “hot topic”. A clear move is going on in the ratio between the flexible workforce and permanently employed personnel. Flexible layer is terminology that shows up more and more when the need for more flexibility from and for workers and enterprises is being discussed. Constructing such a layer with a flexible workforce will increase in years to come, taking into account that the way to manage this will show variations per line of business and per organization. Especially in the logistic sector, the need for flexibility is huge. The lifting and hoisting industry has all signs of having an urgent requirement of a flexible workforce as strategic instrument in order to stay successful. One can think of: opening a branch office in another region, internationalization of companies, large scale projects such as revamps and shutdowns in the chemical en petrochemical industry, ever increasingly large scale projects in the oil & gas industry, civil projects during which the construction is ongoing for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Is your organization dealing with the following issues:

  • Is it possible to achieve a better safety performance if you choose for a higher percentage of permanently employed personnel, supplemented by highly skilled, committed contractors who can supplement your full-time staff from a fixed pool?
  • Policy for senior employees: how to deal with seniority, how to fill vacancies in the (near) future. How do we assure that knowledge stays available to our organization?
  • Financial possibilities for permanent staff: you have some ongoing big projects, peak demand or requirements due to illness, but no budget for contracting permanent staff;
  • Reorganization: unfortunately due to business economics your organization needs to reduce; skills and competences are leaving your organization. In the same time you prefer to work with and profit from your employees in a flexible way in the future;
  • As crane rental company, do you still need 11 crane operators for operating 10 mobile cranes? Or will a policy in which it is stated that you operate your fleet of cranes with 80% permanent staff be successful as well;
  • Labour costs: how big the saving on labour costs in case you make 20% of your operational personnel a flexible workforce?
  • Pool management: my company is employing a small group of personnel with equal competences. Only a few companies in the same line of business are comparable to us. Would it not be much more economical for us, in case all the companies are mutually working with and using the resources of a pool of employees and thus becomes flexible?
  • Within a big international operating company, would it be possible to work in close cooperation with an external pool of highly skilled personnel?

Above questions requires that all processes and activities are meticulous disentangled in terms of fixed and flexible. They require a change of culture, recognizing opportunities and taking decisions.
Filling a position as lifting supervisor, project manager, rigging engineer or safety manager on a rotational basis by someone from outside your company? Ever thought about the idea?

Strategic Instrument:

Increasing and setting up a flexible layer of workforce will be the challenge for lots of organizations in years to come. Not only for periods of peak demand and during illness, because in that case you do not use all opportunities. Bringing a flexible workforce to the level of being a strategic instrument, with clear advantages for the organization as well as for the personnel involved will be the yardstick. Changing towards an organization with a flexible workforce goes much further than anticipating on an ad-hoc base on peak demands and periods of illness and it is obvious that the vertical transport industry is way behind market developments. Organizations who proved to be able to adapt their workforce during the economic crisis, now have a strategic advantage. Organizations that are not yet or hardly using a flexible workforce as a strategic instrument will face serious bottle necks in the near future. It will be more difficult for them to find the right personnel for their vacancies. They will for sure have higher operational costs and run behind on knowledge and innovation.
12hoist4u advises in the way to set up a flexible workforce as structural and strategic instrument.

Advantages of a strategic and flexible workforce:

Next to filling peak demands, advantages of strategic use of a flexible workforce are:

  • Increase of the overall safety performance;
  • Reducing costs;
  • New resources of knowledge and competences;
  • Better and future oriented Human Resources policy.

To be short, organizations are better prepared for future developments in case they work with a flexible workforce that, in addition to the advantages of filling peak demand and requirements due to illness, is being utilized as a strategic instrument.
Organizations that are able to quickly adjust their overall labour requirements, as well in volume as in combination of skills, to changing needs, are the winners in the market.

Do you want to discuss the set-up of a flexible workforce or do you want to be informed about the specific services 12hoist4u can offer? Please feel free to contact us at +31-(0)30-6342078 or info@12hoist4u.com. It will be Mieke van der Heijden’s pleasure to be of service to you with her specific knowledge and several decades of experience in setting up a flexible workforce.

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