Manufacturer Gains Visibility into the Contingent Workforce
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Manufacturer Gains Visibility into the Contingent Workforce

Client Profile: A manufacturer of wood-based construction materials


In late 2017, our client chose Simplify VMS to provide visibility into their contingent labor management program in the U.S. Prior to onboarding Simplify VMS, the client’s HR managers experienced several challenges with managing their contingent workforce, including:

  • They didn’t have a full view of non-employees working for their organization; where they were located, which agency they were from, or which compliance procedures were followed (if any) to onboard them

  • They didn’t have one centralized process to manage their contingent workforce; creating a significant burden surrounding supplier engagement (e.g., contract negotiations, invoice reconciliation, etc.)

  • They didn’t have visibility into their talent suppliers’ pricing and markups; supplier base opacity often times resulted in higher costs to onboard contingent labor resources, which reduced the program’s return on investment

  • They did not have an existing vendor management system (VMS) and so they needed support to setup the tool

Through a competitive RFP bid process, the client decided to go with Simplify VMS for its ease of use, straight forward system setup, and quick implementation timeline (three to six weeks).

“Having SimplifyVMS onboard helped us organize our non-employees and supported them as we moved to a new building. Our HR team was able to focus on helping the people, while the tool made it possible to source more job candidates and get them on the floor within days at our new facility. We’ve really enjoyed working with the Simplify team and can’t wait to expand our program.”


By onboarding Simplify VMS, the client was able to setup their VMS of choice and centralize their contingent workforce data stream into one channel in six weeks. From this channel, managers were able to pull workforce reports in real-time and automate workflows, which helped them when they needed to support the transition of employees from one manufacturing facility to another. Additionally, by having visibility into their supplier base, managers were able to transform their talent management strategy by expanding the base of suppliers from which they were pulling, which resulted in price competition and an overall lower cost per head.

Another major benefit of funneling their contingent labor data (e.g., invoices, timesheets, requisitions, etc.) through one tool was the creation of a single channel of information that program stakeholders could leverage for a variety of uses. This channel has eliminated the need for touchpoints (e.g., emails) and requisitions outside of the system, which has helped reduce the potential for rogue spend and maximized the program’s return on investment.


The client underwent a facility transition and having Simplify VMS running smoothly, it made the transition to the new plant seamless as all of the non-employee workforce data was centralized and easily reportable, which made new onboarding easier as the process had been standardized. This ultimately helped limit the administrative burden on the client’s HR team, so that they could focus on other higher value add efforts like sourcing “right fit” suppliers near their new facility. By having the right VMS tool in place, the client simplified their transition support efforts as the data to support the move was readily available, centralized, and easily reportable.

By having more visibility into their contingent workforce, the client sponsor was able to rationalize their supplier base, source new suppliers, and significantly reduce their administrative workload. This enabled them to focus on strategic initiatives that helped drive their organization’s mission forward.

Overall, managers were able to create measurable metrics for HR to use and drove inefficiencies out of the program. As a result, the client created a benchmark to measure return on investment against each year for HR, and they reduced on- floor headcount costs by $141k in their first year of the program.