Interim consultants or contractors offer a high level expertise to businesses within the regulated space. They lead and manage change initiatives, plug important gaps and drive business from interim executive positions.
By now most organisations understand the value of using contractors but for those who are more adverse, this outlines the advantages of bringing an interim consultant into your business.
Contractors offer transferable experience that they have gained from a career of project delivery, stakeholder management, and troubleshooting. They offer instant knowledge in their specialist areas and can make immediate impacts as they have the IP and confidence to do so.
In our market, a particular example is those working on a particular regulatory change project; this might include Solvency II, MIFID II, SIMR, etc. Contractors have built a subject matter expertise in these areas having worked with other companies to deliver the same results, and they use this experience that they have gleaned to deliver for and advise their future clients.
Since these projects are usually separated from BAU activity, it is unlikely that a permanent resource will have gained the same level of exposure to these projects.
A good contractor will always remain detached and objective, as their expectation is to complete an assignment and move on once the work is done. Their reputation depends on their delivery. They do not get involved in office politics and will follow instructions even if they do not personally agree with a particular approach or method.
Contractors are available at short-notice, even in a busy market such as Risk/Compliance, contractors can start in a matter of days, if not weeks. Compare that to the ever growing notice period of a permanent hire (typically 3-6 months) and the long process of 2 and 3 stage interviews.
Contractors are available at very short notice to interview, and a decision can be made in the same week that a requisition is made by the business. All in all, this makes getting somebody on board a quicker and simpler process, all the more valuable in a market with very unforgiving deadlines.
A common misconception is “contractors are hugely more expensive when compared to FTE’s”. Consider a compliance officer on a £80,000 salary. The reality is that once you have included a recruitment fee, annual bonus, pension, NI, car allowance, expenses, annual leave, sick pay etc. The true cost of employing that individual then becomes closer to £150,000 per year.
A contractor secured on a reasonable daily rate can cost the same, if not marginally more than this and will offer all the benefits outlined in this article.
Delivery focus & Loyalty to project
Good contractors do not run the reputational risk of leaving a project early, as they are mindful of the finish line and getting there before moving on to something new.
Unavailability of permanent resource
Finding a permanent member of staff in the current market has proved very difficult for many firms. The increased demand for quality Risk & Compliance resources, active permanent candidates have multiple opportunities available to them. We have seen more counter-offers than ever before, and salaries in our industry are by far some of the most inflated within in the regulated sector.
The high level of expertise of contractors within their specialist field is the most important factor here, but the other characteristics aforementioned that make a contractor a more viable hire are collectively influential.