CCWP: Raising the Bar in Contingent Workforce Management

By Michelle Hyland, Bartech Director of Marketing

CCWP

In a world ruled by acronyms and abbreviations, I have chosen to add one more to my life: CCWP. What does it mean? Search engine results offer this:

  • Country Club of Whispering Pines
  • California Coalition for Women Prisoners
  • Center for Civil War Photography
  • Close-Coupling Wave-Packet
  • Certified Chiropractic Wellness Practitioner
  • Corvette Club of Western Pennsylvania
  • Customs Cooperation Working Party
  • Concealed Carry Weapons Permit
  • Clackamas County Community Wildfire Protection

While some of these spark a few curious ideas, none represents my current focus. The CCWP in my life is a goal I’ve set to become a Certified Contingent Workforce Professional (CCWP).

I recently spent an intensive two days refining, refreshing and increasing my knowledge of contingent workforce management as a candidate for Staffing Industry Analysts (SIA) professional certification.

Why pursue professional certification?

The Contingent Workforce (CW) industry is one that seems to have grown more by a ‚Äúseat of the pants‚ÄĚ progression than in a formal, disciplined manner. While that may have been true in its early days, the industry does, in fact, have standards, rules of engagement and best practices to drive contingent workforce program excellence. Bartech‚Äôs goal in giving my colleagues and me the opportunity to pursue professional certification was to formalize our industry knowledge and build greater domain expertise in support of our clients. Our entire sales team is on deck to pursue certification. Our goal is to significantly strengthen our ability to provide strategic counsel to our clients and to design more effective programs that optimize their use of contingent labor.

What differentiates certified professionals?

The SIA standards for professional certification in contingent workforce management were developed by industry scholars, who infused the coursework with a tremendous amount of expertise in HR, procurement, Managed Service Provider (MSP) solutions,  contingent staffing and Vendor Managed Service (VMS). Certification candidates received a detailed participant manual, in-person training, instructional video modules and a 1000-page reference guide. Topics covered include:

  • CW History and Program Strategy
  • Quality Measurement
  • Program Management Data
  • Managing Staffing Partner Performance and Managing Risks
  • Understanding Cost and Quality
  • Managing Change, Implementation and Program Adoption
  • Contracts, VMS, MSP ¬†and Global

While certification demonstrates mastery of contingent workforce management best practices, more than gaining command of industry facts, figures and terminology, certified contingent workforce professionals exhibit a deep understanding of the strategy behind the solutions. They can expertly navigate the contingent workforce optimization roadmap and possess a deep understanding of the contingent workforce program maturity model. That makes for better partners in helping clients optimize their workforce management practices, improve business performance and generate new paths to greater productivity and efficiency.

Who should pursue professional certification?
The training and certification exam prep would be a great learning experience for anyone in the industry. The class was a mix of professionals representing MSP solutions providers, staffing providers and current and prospective contingent workforce program managers. Experience levels varied from industry veterans to newcomers. While the latter seemed surprising at first, it quickly became apparent that certification prep is a fabulous way to fast track people new to the industry‚ÄĒa much more efficient way to bring someone up to speed faster than learning it all on the job.

How does professional certification serve Bartech and the industry?
SIA certification elevates the professionalism of our industry and codifies a wealth of knowledge and best practices. It offers an excellent opportunity for career development and drives a commitment to continuous learning, as recertification requires that the certified professional complete 24 hours of continuing education annually.

That training is already paying off. I have been able to reference two modules since I have been back at my desk. One client asked how we define co-employment (Module 5 ‚Äď Identifying and Managing Risks) and another one asked us to highlight how communication should work between client/MSP/VMS on a regular basis (Module 11 ‚Äď General Contingent Workforce Program Management). Having the course material at my fingertips has been very helpful.

Professional certification offers a means to make the best better. At Bartech, it is a way to pursue our pledge to always leading, continuously improve, to relentlessly build our expertise and to always look for ways to accomplish more for our clients tomorrow than we did today.