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IT contractors not feeling the love: IPro Index 2010

IT contractors not feeling the love: IPro Index 2010

IT management needs to do more to keep contractors on side, report finds

IT managers have been advised by the head of a leading contractor management organisation to work more actively to meet the needs and welfare of independent IT contractors or risk losing staff.

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The warning, issued by Entity Solutions chief executive officer, Matthew Franceschini, follows the release of the IPro Index 2010.

The index, run by Monash University and sponsored by Entity Solutions, found that despite the global financial crisis receding in Australia, independent contractors, or ‘IPros’ (independent professionals), remained uncertain about job security.

According to the report, independent contractors’ commitment to clients and perceived client support dropped by two per cent from last year, bringing the numbers down to 62 per cent and 64 per cent respectively.

Commenting on the report, Franceschini said that despite the different employment circumstances of independent contractors to in-house staff, organisations should still consider the needs and welfare of IPros to prevent further erosion of their commitment to companies.

“Even though the conditions of their engagement may be different, for the duration of their engagement they are effectively another member of staff,” he said.

“In recognising this, it makes absolute sense that every manager should learn to identify what motivates and engages an IPro so that they can better manage these temporary relationships and harvest the benefits in knowledge and skills which IPros can hold,” Franceschini said of the results.

In detailing possible sources of the rise in discontent among IPros, the report also found a significant increase of contractors receiving pay cuts to remain in employment this year, recorded to be at 32 per cent this year, a seven per cent jump from last year.

The figure contrasts to the 2009 IPro Index which found only one in four Australian contractors, have been required to take a pay cut to stay in employment.

Also, the 2009 report found a high level of commitment between contractors and their employer, with three quarters of respondents stated that that their client organisation values their contributions and cares about their well-being.

About half of survey participants also stated they would be “very happy” to spend the rest of their career working for their current client organisation.

“The results of the IPro Index suggest that organisations will also need to put intelligent strategies together to better source, engage and manage this educated, resilient and increasingly self aware workforce,” Dr Tui McKeown, Deputy Director of Social and Economic Interface Research Network, Monash University said in a statement.

Diana Nguyen

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