A Workforce in Transition—Staffing a Technology Transformation Initiative in a Remote, Hybrid, and RTO World

Brian Trout, Executive Vice President, Sales, Baer
Brian Trout
Executive Vice President, Sales
23 June 2023

From Apple to Uber, enterprises are increasingly issuing return to office mandates, with some setting expectations that employees return full time and others offering up hybrid arrangements in which they are in-office one or more days a week. In many cases, employees who successfully navigated remote work for more than three years are pushing back. Earlier this year, the Washington Post reported that office capacity had hit a post-pandemic high of 50%, and while that number may continue to grow, the model may never again dominate the way it once did—remote and hybrid models are here to stay.

As enterprises and their employees find their footing, it feels a bit like the wild west—there are no norms, no standard practices. And when it comes to staffing critical enterprise technology transformation initiatives, unprecedented challenges are emerging around identity verification, employee engagement, and access to resources. These pressures add a new layer of complexity and risk to initiatives that are already among the most significant an enterprise can undertake.

Companies and enterprise performance partners like Baer need to find new approaches to meet these challenges so they can find and retain the talent they need to drive the best performance from their enterprise technologies.

Emerging Challenges Require Innovative Approaches

The first challenge is perhaps the most concerning. I have heard anecdotally that there is an increase in people misrepresenting themselves and their qualifications, accepting more than one full-time position, and/or farming out work to contractors, but I haven’t seen clear data to understand how prevalent the issue is. Anyone hiring, whether internally, through a systems integrator, or through an enterprise performance partner, must now take greater care to validate the identity of candidates—that they are who they say they are, that they have the skills and expertise they claim, and that they are credible in their contributions.

The second challenge that I am hearing of is around engagement. Both management and employees are suffering from burn out. Remote work is not for everyone—it makes it more difficult to connect in real time, and although many are thriving, others are struggling with isolation. Engagement isn’t just about happy employees—it can have a tangible business impact. Employees who are not engaged are less likely to successfully complete the project in a timely manner so the company can begin realizing value on their enterprise investment. Companies are going to have to embrace new models for engaging employees, holding them accountable, and supporting asynchronous work. Technology will likely be a differentiator here, but finding the right set of solutions and adopting them is yet another transformation lift.

And the third challenge relates to matching company needs for remote, hybrid, or in-office with talent desire and willingness. Technology is unquestionably changing faster than it ever has before and transformation initiatives are imperative for any company that wants to stay ahead of the curve. Even under the best of circumstances, identifying talent with highly specialized expertise, adjacent skillsets, or even the ability to adapt and learn new skills, is challenging. Now we must also consider how our clients are structured and how they intend to manage a project, relative to talent availability, willingness, and capability to be in-office and/or remote. It makes a tight talent pool even tighter.

Addressing Challenges with a Precision Approach

Addressing these challenges is not the sole responsibility of the company. If you are partnering with an enterprise performance partner to assist with identifying expertise to support your technology transformation initiative, then you should expect them to partner with you to resolve these emerging challenges.

At Baer, we believe the extended management and oversight of your contingent labor is key to ensuring   on time delivery of and realizing maximum value from complex IT transformations. We are continuously looking down the innovation curve, proactively engaging people through our invitation-only Opportunity Edge network, continuously cultivating long-standing relationships with proven resources in the enterprise technology space. The same precision approach we take to identifying the right experience and skillsets extends to identifying the willingness and ability to work within the parameters of how you choose to execute your initiative.

No one could have anticipated how much the market environment has changed in the past few years. The situation remains fluid and demands that both enterprises and enterprise performance partners like Baer who support their critical technology infrastructure projects stay apprised of emerging trends and challenges, proactively seek to address them early on, and remain nimble.

At Baer, it is our responsibility to understand the IT consulting market today and where it is headed next, to understand your strategic approach to technology transformation and the technology itself, and to help you drive the best performance from solutions, whatever model you adopt for implementing them.

About Baer

Unlike typical technology staffing companies, Baer is a true enterprise performance partner. We have a deep understanding of the scope of enterprise technology transformation initiatives and the highly specialized skillsets you will need at different stages of the process.

To learn more about how Baer can make a positive impact on your enterprise transformation, please reach out to Brian Trout, btrout@baergroup.com, Executive Vice President, Sales, or John Wilson, Vice President of Strategic Accounts, at jwilson@baergroup.com.

We look forward to speaking with you and learning about your specific challenges.

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