Over the past ten years a number of market conditions have come together to give rise to so-called ‘hypergrowths’– companies that are growing at an annual rate of 40% or more. Although many of these companies are based around new technologies such as AI and blockchain, hypergrowth exists across all sectors where companies are using market disruption to innovate new products, services and practices. In this article, Contracting Wise looks at the important and mutually beneficial relationship that exists between hypergowth companies and contractors.
How do hypergrowths benefit from independent contractors?
For any growing business, the number one challenge is accessing the right skills and expertise in order to facilitate further growth. The global competition for talent has made it a seller’s market, and many companies lack the financial resources or industry reputations to hire the best professionals on a permanent basis. Contractors, therefore, provide growing businesses with an essential supplementary talent pool, and this is particularly important for hypergrowth companies. The rapid expansion that comes from doubling their revenue every 3-4 years means that these companies have urgent talent needs that are difficult to meet through conventional hiring. This is particularly true if they are startup companies with little or no reputation.
For these companies, access to an independent workforce is crucial. Besides offering a cost-effective means of accessing talent, contractors also provide hypergrowth companies with the following advantages:
- Flexibility and agility in responding to the market and how they deploy resources
- Access to expertise and experience that is not internally available
- Rapid scaling of specialist teams to fulfill specific projects
- New perspectives that help drive innovation
The research points to a definite correlation between companies that are achieving hypergrowth and their use of contractors. A recent industry survey revealed that hypergrowth companies used contractors 25-30% more than other startups growing at a slower rate. This suggests that rapid growth businesses who invest in independent talent are more likely experience hypergrowth as a result of the competitive advantage provided by independent contractors. With the unrelenting pace of change in business and technology, the range of talent needed by an organisation can change on a frequent basis. With access to the right talent, organisations can quickly and easily build the teams they need to compete in a dynamic global economy.
How do contractors benefit from working for a hypergrowth company?
Research shows that many professionals at the top of their field are increasingly turning to contracting and consulting roles to provide them with the choice and flexibility that they want. As companies compete for this talent, a new ‘talent economy’ is being created. Unlike the ‘gig economy’ where cost of labour is usually the primary hiring factor, the talent economy refers to businesses who are looking for the best people, not the cheapest. Contractors with specific, in- demand skills are extremely attractive to hypergrowth companies, who are usually able to afford to pay a premium for such expertise. Besides the financial benefits, there are many other aspects of working for a hypergrowth company that could benefit contractors, such as the following:
- A unique opportunity to work with cutting-edge technologies in innovative environments
- A chance to network with other experts who could provide you with future opportunities
- Experience working with new technologies and processes could provide contractors with skills that few people possess
- As your hypergrowth gains industry footing you could be offered opportunities to write or speak about your experiences
- An opportunity to capitalise of the financial and professional benefits of working for a hypergrowth without the long-term risk
Which sectors have the most hypergrowth opportunities?
Although hypergrowth has become synonymous with new technologies such as AI, cryptocurrency and blockchain, hypergrowth companies can be found across all industries. The changes brought about by these new technologies, along with the emergence of new global markets, are creating a new business landscape. A recent survey that looked at the behavior of hypergrowth companies showed that 38% of surveyed hypergrowth startups are employing a form of AI in their businesses to better use their data, improve operations, and provide customers with tailored services. This means an inevitably high demand for contractors with tech-based skills. In addition, there will be a demand for those who understand the wider legal and financial implications of these technologies. However, the survey also showed that 47% of hypergrowth startups are not reliant on any new technology, indicating that ultimately, hypergrowth comes from providing customers with the best solutions. Neither are hypergrowth companies all new startups, many are long established businesses that have entered a new phase of growth by adapting their offering or entering into new business ventures.
How can contractors target hypergrowth companies?
Although contractors are in demand, targeting hypergrowth companies calls for a proactive approach. The best way to secure an opportunity to work with a hypergrowth company is to do your research and keep yourself informed. Reading business literature, blogs and journals will keep you informed on fast growing businesses where your skills could be valuable. Networking sites such as LinkedIn are also an excellent way of tracking certain business activity while also growing your network. You can actively indicate that you’re looking for contract opportunities within hypergrowth companies with LinkedIn’s open candidate function, which enables you to specify the kind of work you’d prefer. If you think a particular company would be a good fit for you, you can either approach them directly, or via a recruitment agency working with that company. It’s important to identify how you can add value to a company and present this to them in a convincing manner. Lastly, it’s important that contractors take the opportunity to invest in their skills. Hypergrowth companies are likely to need the most up-to-date expertise and knowledge when it comes to latest software or processes. Taking regular courses and learning new or niche skills will enhancing your overall service offering, giving you the edge on the competition.