Leadership

Leveraging Independent Contractors for Strategic Initiatives

by Tosho Trajanov

10 min read

When businesses aim to grow, they often launch critical projects or actions to drive their long-term objectives and advance their mission. Whether it's entering new markets, improving product quality, or increasing operational efficiencies, these initiatives are vital for staying competitive. 

However, executing these strategies depends on having the right talent in place, which can be a challenge, especially in tech.

The tech industry struggles with hiring and keeping skilled talent. For example, software developers at big tech companies like Google often stay for just over a year, while the broader average is 4.2 years.

What's more, the U.S. sees about 8.2% turnover in tech roles. The costs of hiring and replacing staff—like recruitment fees and the expenses tied to high turnover—make hiring even more challenging. 

To handle these challenges, many companies are now turning to independent contractors (ICs). This strategy gives them the flexibility to bring in expert skills quickly without the long-term commitment and cost of hiring full-time staff. Contractors can help companies stay agile, which allows them to scale their workforce up or down as needed. The model is perfect for pushing forward strategic initiatives without the extra overhead.

In this article, we're going to explore some common strategic initiatives that companies undertake and explain how ICs can help drive these initiatives to successful completion.

Scaling Project Delivery

Companies scaling their project delivery quickly have much to gain by bringing on skilled, expert talent on demand to complement their core teams. This can be especially useful during busy periods or for kick-starting large projects that the in-house team can't handle on their own or quickly enough. Companies can adjust team size with ICs, and by doing so, they'll also avoid the extra costs and long-term commitments of new full-time hires. 

This flexibility helps keep projects on schedule and budgets under control, allowing companies to tackle multiple projects at the same time and adapt to changes.

From our own experience and seeing it in action with one of our clients—a healthcare provider—we've seen firsthand how impactful contractors can be. This client managed to push forward over 30 projects by bringing on ICs. The contractors filled gaps in expertise that the existing team couldn't cover and kept projects moving forward without the usual delays of traditional hiring.

Expanding to New Markets

Hiring contractors is a smart, flexible way to support a company's expansion into new international markets by bringing in experts for specific projects. With the help of ICs, companies can quickly fill gaps in expertise and adapt to new regional challenges with agility. 

This approach allows businesses to leverage specialized skills on a temporary basis and avoid the long-term commitments and costs associated with hiring full-time staff. By using contractors, companies can have the necessary talent to succeed in diverse and unfamiliar environments, and with that, they'll remain flexible and responsive to market demands. 

ICs can provide insights and skills that might not be readily available within the company, especially when entering new markets with unique cultural, regulatory, or technological landscapes. They can help implement local strategies, tailor products and services to meet regional needs and navigate the complexities of new market entry. 

Take the case of Tiko, for example. As it expanded across six sub-Saharan countries, it faced the challenge of scaling its tech team in a region with limited access to senior tech talent. By bringing in ICs with the right skills, Tiko was able to overcome these obstacles, which allowed the company to implement the necessary tech infrastructure and adapt its services to meet diverse regional needs.

retention in tech

Digital Transformation

When a company undergoes a tech transformation, hiring ICs can be highly beneficial. ICs allow the company to quickly fill gaps in expertise and adapt to technological advancements with agility with minimal disruptions to ongoing operations. 

This approach provides the flexibility to bring in specialists for short-term projects so that the company can stay current with the latest technology trends without the long-term costs and commitments of full-time hires. Contractors can introduce new perspectives and innovative solutions, which are vital during a digital transformation. They help implement cutting-edge technologies, optimize existing systems, and enhance overall operational efficiency. 

Reboot is a great example of using ICs to drive tech transformation. By hiring contractors with expertise in the latest technologies, Reboot was able to push forward its tech transformation. The contractors it hired helped implement new software solutions that boosted Reboot's efficiency and data-handling capabilities.

Operational Efficiency

Hiring contractors is a smart way to make operations more efficient and boost productivity within a company. Contractors bring in specialized skills and new perspectives that are key to fine-tuning processes and quickly implementing new systems.

When a company brings on contractors, it taps into a pool of expertise that's available right when it needs it, without the long-term commitments that come with hiring full-time staff. This flexibility makes operations more agile, as contractors can step in to address specific needs, streamline processes, and then move on once the job is done. 

Contractors can also introduce best practices from other industries or businesses, injecting fresh ideas into existing processes that can lead to greater efficiencies. This external insight can be crucial for dismantling operational bottlenecks and promoting a more cooperative and efficient workplace.

Tree Stones, a Zurich-based agency, boosted its operational efficiency by working with ICs. This strategic move streamlined the company's hiring process and helped Tree Stones reduce the time spent on candidate evaluations and focus more on project execution. The high-quality contractors helped Tree Stones scale its services in response to client demands without compromising quality or exceeding budget constraints.

Funding and Investment Preparation

When a company is gearing up for funding rounds, the speed and quality of its product development can influence its appeal to investors. In these high-stakes situations, contractors can be a game-changer. 

They can accelerate development cycles and enhance product quality to make sure that innovations are market-ready and technically robust. This is particularly critical in industries where technological edge and time-to-market are key differentiators. By leveraging ICs, companies can quickly scale their development efforts, meet tight deadlines, and present a polished product to potential investors.

Contractors do this by bringing specialized skills and fresh perspectives that can drive innovation and efficiency. Their expertise allows companies to address specific technical challenges, optimize processes, and integrate advanced features more rapidly. 

For example, consider the case of Perfocal, a platform that connects clients with professional photographers. As the company set its sights on expanding internationally and securing a Series A funding round, it faced the need to upgrade its platform. Perfocal brought in a team of ICs who quickly got to work enhancing the tech behind their service.

turnover in tech roles

Customer and Market Adaptation

Staying competitive means constantly adapting products and services to meet evolving customer demands, which requires businesses to deal with shifts in project focus

Bringing in contractors can be a smart strategy for businesses looking to quickly infuse new skills and fresh perspectives into their teams. This approach guarantees that companies remain agile and responsive to market trends without the long-term commitments of hiring full-time staff.

Contractors can introduce innovative ideas and specialized expertise that align with shifting market trends. They help companies tailor their offerings to meet the diverse needs of their customers, which can improve overall customer satisfaction. 

For example, Givebutter, a tech-driven fundraising platform, recognized the need to evolve alongside its growing user base. To keep up with shifting market trends and the diverse needs of fundraisers and donors, Givebutter tapped into the expertise of ICs. This move allowed them to quickly integrate cutting-edge ideas and technical skills into their service offerings.

Accelerated Product Launch

Companies that aim to capture market opportunities and maintain a competitive edge often must meet tight product launch deadlines. Contractors play a vital role in this, offering the agility and specialized skills needed to speed up product development and meet launch timelines. Companies can expand their development capabilities without overwhelming their permanent staff by simply hiring ICs.

Contractors bring specific expertise that helps companies achieve their development objectives quickly. They can manage intense workloads, introduce innovative solutions, and make sure that products are market-ready on time. This flexibility is essential in the digital realm, where rapid innovation is a key factor in attracting and retaining users.

Consider Imgur's strategy, for instance. To quickly roll out new features, Imgur hired ICs to work alongside its core team. This move expanded Imgur's development capabilities and enabled the company to manage the intense workload required for prompt product releases without overwhelming its permanent staff.

Hire Independent Contractors via Adeva

Hiring independent contractors through Adeva gives your business access to a diverse selection of tech talent. Whether you need software engineers, QAs, product managers, AI experts, data experts, or product designers, Adeva connects you to over 20,000 rigorously vetted professionals. 

Adeva's solution is designed for speed, agility, and cost-efficiency The average time to match candidates with your projects is just three days, allowing you to accelerate your hiring process and keep your projects moving forward without delay. This quick matching is supported by Adeva's AI-powered technology that's tailored for rapid talent identification.

The platform also simplifies budget management with a transparent cost structure that is free of hidden fees. It offers flexible engagement types—choose from part-time or full-time arrangements and adjust as necessary.

Additionally, Adeva enhances your operational efficiency. Dedicated client and talent partners manage onboarding, timesheets, and custom reports. They understand your business’s technical and strategic needs, which makes Adeva a strategic partner in your growth, not just a service provider.

Conclusion

In a world that values agility and expertise, leveraging ICs has proven to be a strategic asset for companies aiming to drive their strategic initiatives forward. Throughout this article, we've explored how ICs can make an impact across various areas—from scaling project delivery and entering new markets to technological transformations and enhancing operational efficiency.

Independent contractors offer the flexibility and specialized skills necessary to adapt quickly to changing business needs and market demands without the long-term commitments associated with traditional hiring. Platforms like Adeva simplify the process by connecting businesses with top-tier talent globally, handling all the administrative overheads, and ensuring compliance, which allows companies to focus on a culture of innovation and growth.

Whether it's accelerating product development to meet tight launch deadlines, adapting to customer and market changes, or preparing for critical funding rounds, ICs can be integral to achieving business goals efficiently and effectively. By incorporating ICs into their strategic planning, businesses can maintain competitiveness, drive growth, and continue to innovate in their respective industries.

FAQs

Q: How do independent contractors compare to full-time employees?
Independent contractors offer flexibility and specialized skills without long-term commitments, often at a lower overall cost. Full-time employees provide stability and deeper integration into company culture but come with higher costs and longer hiring processes. Contractors are ideal for short-term, specialized tasks, while employees suit ongoing, core roles.
Q: How can companies ensure quality and reliability from independent contractors?
Companies can ensure quality and reliability from independent contractors by thoroughly vetting candidates, setting clear expectations, maintaining regular communication, and using performance monitoring tools. Establishing milestones and regular check-ins also helps ensure contractors meet project standards and deliverables.
Tosho Trajanov
Tosho Trajanov
Co-founder

Tosho is a co-founder at Adeva, with over a decade of experience in the tech industry. He has partnered with diverse organizations, from nimble startups to Fortune 500 companies, to drive technological advancements and champion the effectiveness of cross-cultural, distributed teams.

Expertise
  • Leadership
  • Planning
  • Product Strategy
  • Software Architecture
  • Agile Methodologies
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