In the past, contractors were employed to fill in for vacations, handle sick calls, and help during busy times. Times have changed! From the reception desk all the way to the CEO suite, specialized contractors with unique skills sets help companies solve strategic business challenges.
With many contract assignments stretching to longer-term engagements, hiring managers and department heads are looking for new ways to motivate contract staff. The challenge is that what motivates your full-time staff, may not work for contractors. Here are a few tips you can use to motivate your contractors:
- Review your on-boarding process.
All too often, contractors are brought in, put at a desk and expected to perform. This might work okay, but for better results, devote some time to bringing them up to speed on your company and their project. Explain how their role fits into helping achieve larger company objectives, and supporting the existing staff. Outline specific expectations and check back frequently to answer any questions they may have. You’ll find that spending a bit more of your time up-front will reap a lot of benefit.
- Make them feel welcome.
Before a contractor arrives, inform your existing employees about his or her arrival and the reason for bringing them on board, encourage your staff to introduce themselves and include the contractor into office social functions. Making the contractor feel more welcome will help break down communication barriers and lead to better results.
- Help build the contractor’s confidence.
Provide contractors with tasks that compliment their skill sets. Put them in a position to succeed and offer the tools and resources they need to exceed your requirements. Don’t be afraid to share their successes at company/department meetings. This will go a long way in making contractors feel like a valuable part of the team and motivate them to perform at an extremely high level.
- Consider ‘TEMP’ a forbidden four-letter word!
‘Temp’ carries negative connotations. Today’s ‘temps’ are more akin to highly skilled and sought after ‘free agents.’ They have a unique set of skills that are in high demand and have chosen a career that provides flexibility, excitement and new challenges. So, this isn’t just a ‘temp’ job; this is their career. Encourage your staff to refer to your new contractor by name, not “the temp.”
Combining these strategies will help you motivate your contractors, get jobs done in less time, and help your operation run more smoothly.