A staffing company with a long history of doing business with Hollywood, is bringing the movie and TV industry’s unique workforce model to the rest of the world.
It’s almost a crusade, the way Bill Inman, president of the aptly named Emergent, describes the goal of the company. What he and Emergent want to do to the world of staffing and recruiting is nothing less than to “modernize it.”
“We reduce the risk and the cost to employers,” he says. “We are the employer of record. We handle everything — the verification, the paperwork, the payroll, compliance. They do what they do best, which is to run their business.”
So far, that sounds like a straightforward and classic staffing practice. The twist is that the employer does the sourcing and recruiting. When a client makes a hiring decision, everything from that point is handled by Emergent.
“It’s the separation of sourcing and employment,” Inman explains. Separating them, he insists, makes sense, since the company that needs temporary workers is in the best position to decide who is a good fit. But it may not want to be bothered with the paperwork, or run the risks that come with being an employer.
This kind of arrangement has similarities to the back-shop services used by staffing firms. Vendors like Top Echelon Contracting handle all the paperwork, compliance, and administrative details of contract placements, while the staffing firm places the workers, and is the employer.
Emergent provides those services to small search firms and other 3rd party recruiters — even solos — but also serves as the employer of record. With Emergent serving as the employer, independent recruiters can grow a staffing service to supplement or even supplant their placement business.
“They can add a staffing line without the overhead or risk,” observes Inman, who said working with recruiters and small staffing firms was where Emergent first focused its effort when it was launched in 2011. The company is part of GEP Administrative Services, Inc. one of North America’s largest employers of contingent labor. It does business as Entertainment Partners.
A few months ago, Emergent extended its services directly to employers.
Quality Systems, Inc., is an Emergent customer, and its talent acquisition manager, Rick Maestas, says he prefers to source his own temporary help, then turn them over to Emergent to hire.
“All their services,” he says, “reduce cost and risk on our side… Some of the previous (staffing) companies made mistakes on the paperwork, didn’t handle things properly. Or they’d send us people who just weren’t good fits.”
Because of the highly technical work done by many of the contract workers at QSI, which develops and markets medical practice management and electronic health records systems, Maestas says it is quicker and better for his recruiters to source the candidates. “For some of the niche positions, the knowledge transfer would just take too much time,” he explained.
He wouldn’t specifically say how many temps are brought on by QSI during the course of a year. “We’re a large company with lots of employees and we have our share of consultants,” Maestas says. Consequently, he hears from dozens of recruiters and staffing firms every week, and has worked with many over the years.
Work with Emergent, is his advice. They’re “a great company for other outside staffing companies to partner with.”