Barry Asin, President Staffing Industry Analyst, 5 year projections from the 2013 Executive Forum

The staffing industry will grow, but it will become more concentrated by 2018. Online staffing will advance and the percentage of large staffing buyers using independent contractor compliance solutions will jump. In addition, the Affordable Care Act will be more boom than bust for the industry.

These are a few of the 18 predictions made by Staffing Industry Analysts President Barry Asin at the Staffing Industry Executive Forum last week in Orlando.

Here are all 18 predictions for the staffing industry in 2018:

  1. U.S. staffing revenue will hit $160 billion in 2018, up from $126.8 billion in 2012.
  2. North America will remain about a third of the global staffing market.
  3. Information technology and industrial staffing will make up nearly 60 percent of the U.S. temporary staffing market. They are at 53 percent now.
  4. Market concentration increases: the top 15 firms will have 50 percent of market share.
  5. The Affordable Care Act will benefit the staffing industry. “We will see that the Affordable Care Act will be more boom than bust for the staffing industry,” Asin said. However, a survey by Staffing Industry Analysts found that staffing firms expected customers to absorb a median 65 percent of extra costs while another survey found a majority of buyers expect to absorb none of the costs.
  6. Healthcare staffing revenue will reach $13.4 billion in 2018, which represents an estimated compound annual growth rate of 6 percent from 2013.
  7. Work will expand from “supply chain” to “human cloud” models. The human cloud includes online staffing as well as crowdsourcing where a large task is broken down into several smaller micro tasks that are farmed out to online workers.
  8. Online staffing will reach $5 billion in annual spend in 2018 from $1 billion in 2012. Online staffing includes firms such as ElanceĀ and oDesk. These firms connect staffing buyers with workers online – tasks are posted on a website and workers are engaged and paid via the platform. The workers are often independent contractors, but they can be W-2 employees as well. Often the staffing buyer and worker never meet face-to-face.
  9. Total talent management will become ubiquitous by 2012. Total talent management refers to overall management of a workforce, both traditionally hired and contingent workers. It includes such aspects as designing benefits and compensation, measuring performance and planning for future workforce needs among other aspects. It involves both traditionally hired and contingent workers.
  10. Technology choices and effective adoption practices will be critical to the success of staffing firms in 2018 like never before.
  11. Maturing VMS, MSP and RPO models morph into the next big thing.
  12. Staffing firms will be among the heaviest users of social media.
  13. Big data and social media will dominate the skills needed in staffing.
  14. New staffing operating models will roll out of the lab and into the mainstream. Examples include virtual and offshore recruiting and video interviewing.
  15. Death of the branch office model for staffing companies.
  16. Independent contractor compliance/screening adoption will exceed 70 percent among large clients. Presently, 54 percent of large buyers had adopted such models in 2012.
  17. Micro-targeting locations will drive growth for staffing firms.
  18. Micro-targeting of skills will drive growth in staffing as well.