Because of the uncertainty, 85% of companies in the United States will stop hiring

More than a fifth of San Francisco’s beleaguered office market remains vacant despite a handful of major leases in the second quarter.

Photo: Bloomberg Agency

About 78% of business leaders said that as long as economic conditions remained uncertain, they were more likely to hire self-employed rather than full-time employees, according to a survey by Fiverr International Ltd.

In the face of increasing economic uncertainty, 85% of US companies plan to stop hiring, while 78% plan to lay off some of their employees.

Today, temporary workers form part of the core budgets of many companies. More than 80% of Fiverr’s survey of over 1,000 medium and large business owners said they are currently hiring freelancers.

However, interest is growing: Fiverr has seen an increase in demand for its platform, especially from large companies.

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“At the end of the day, all companies must continue to operate,” said Misha Kaufman, CEO of Fiverr. “They view freelance talent as a variable expense that they can increase or decrease as needed, without restrictions.”

Freelancers and other informal work arrangements allow companies to fluctuate up or down and ramp up quickly when conditions change, said Raven Jesothasan, senior partner at HR consultancy Mercer.

“In the past 20 years, we’ve seen at least four ‘black swan’ events: 9/11, the financial crisis, the pandemic, and now the war in Ukraine, who knows what might happen next,” he said. . “There’s just this increased premium that we see in agility and flexibility.”

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Even now that companies have become more dependent on contract workers, management practices have not caught up. “You have to realize that this talent is important to the business, so it needs to be managed,” said Tracy Malcolm, HR consultant at Willis Towers Watson. “It’s part of the workforce that the company has and a lot of organizations don’t treat it that way.”

In fact, some companies don’t know how many outside workers they hire. An investment firm that Malcolm recently worked with was “shocked” to discover that one division is made up of 30% contractors. Another department has 50%.

Attitudes are slowly changing, Malcolm said, and some organizations are beginning to devote more time, attention and resources to managing the casual workforce. “We’re seeing roles in HR that are dedicated to doing this right, and that’s new.”

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