Baker & McKenzie's Global Employment Practice Group is pleased to present its 53rd issue of the Global Employer entitled A Global Flexible Workforce: Temporary and Other Contingent Workers.
In times of fast-moving market conditions, straitened economics, changing workforce demographics and an increasingly global and mobile labour market, many multinationals are relying heavily on global contingent labour to provide greater flexibility, bridge gaps and manage costs.
However, the challenge of using temporary and other contingent workers-temporary agency workers, independent contractors, freelancers, project workers, fixed-term employees, outsourced workers etc. - cannot be underestimated. As the trend towards more flexible labour increases, so do concerns about the social effects of a disenfranchised workforce. It is no surprise then, that global scrutiny and regulation of contingent worker arrangements is on the rise.
China recently introduced new labour dispatch rules significantly limiting the ability of companies to hire staff through staffing agencies. The new law, due to take effect on July 1, 2013, could affect up to 60 million workers in China. Europe has seen the Temporary Agency Workers Directive increase the cost of using a temporary workforce, and in the US, new federal and state laws, agency enforcement initiatives and class action lawsuits are increasing the risks associated with many contingent worker arrangements.
To address some of the key legal compliance issues faced by multinationals, leading Baker & McKenzie attorneys from 12 jurisdictions across Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America and North America have contributed to this country-by-country guide. What emerges is that a collaborative global approach to managing the legal compliance and other risks associated with temporary and other contingent workers is essential if multinationals wish to take full and proper advantage of the opportunities that a flexible workforce can bring.