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Fractional Hiring: A Game-Changer for Startups

Anurag Paul

12th Jun'24
Fractional Hiring: A Game-Changer for Startups | OpenGrowth

In layman’s terms, fractional hiring means that a highly qualified executive is employed by your company for a set number of days per week. They can be employed for a few hours during a week or several days during a month. This person can give his or her insights to several companies at a given period depending on the timetable.

It is beneficial to both companies and professionals. Hiring provisional services allows companies to obtain the best skills at the top level, while they can concentrate on their main operations. People get to learn from the variety of organizations they are associated with, and this adds to their portfolio. This article aims at explaining the concept of fractional hiring as a form of hiring. So, keep reading this article to know more about fractional hiring and how it can be a game-changer for your emerging startup.

What is Fractional Hiring?

Fractional hiring is a recent practice of staffing that allows organizations to obtain skills and talent flexibly. It targets the executive level and above and does not include consultants, temporary workers, or freelancers. In this model, a highly skilled executive works in a company for a certain number of hours in a week or days in a month. This, in turn, enables the executive to share his or her knowledge with several organizations at once.

The benefits of using this approach of hiring are numerous. It is a win-win situation for companies since they can access the services of the best professionals without having to pay the full price of a permanent employee. These services allow businesses to gain access to a variety of specialized skills that enable them to become more efficient and focus on their central activities. 

For the executives, it provides an opportunity to engage with different organizations. This will help them gain professional experience. So, start exploring the key metrics for evaluating the impact of Fractional CMO services. In other words, fractional hiring is beneficial for both parties.


The Benefits of Fractional Hiring for Cost-Effective Leadership

Fractional CXOs are a wise strategy for organizations that want to save money. It allows them to get the needed skills and experience without signing long-term contracts and paying the C-level employees high salaries and benefits. Interim business management positions, or fractional positions, rose by 18 percent from 2021 to 2022. Since 2020, they have increased by 57%. Fractional services have been in demand, particularly in the year 2020 and the subsequent years.

Several reasons make fractional hiring advantageous, especially in today’s world of economic difficulties such as the current recession in the United States. There are challenges that firms encounter in managing and expanding their business with a small number of employees. Here are some examples: 

  • Reduction of the size of the senior leadership teams because full-time salaries are expensive. 
  • Teams that do not have proper leadership and direction.
  • Chief executives and business proprietors assume leadership of strategic plans. 
  • Layoffs and downsizing that result in overworking of the remaining employees. 


Understanding Fractional Engagements

Fractional engagements are emerging as a preferred model as more employers look for flexible staffing arrangements. However, what do such arrangements look like between employers and fractional talent? 


1. Creating a Fractional Position 

First, the employer has to be specific about their requirements and the extent of work that is expected to be done by the fractional employee. Then, they draw up a work-sharing document that includes the functions to be performed, the time frame, and the pay. This can be done through drafting a contract or a statement of work. 

While it is important to have as many details as possible regarding the project and its expected outcomes, communication and tangible goals (KPIs and OKRs) are essential. The two parties have to remain consistent throughout the process of the engagement. When executed and coordinated well, fractional engagements can deliver qualified professionals and executive management. Go through a brief overview of fractional executives before you hire one.


2. Usefulness and Compensation for Staffing with Part-Time Employees 

Fractional executives usually log in remotely from home or the client’s business premises for a few hours a week to a few days a month. They work like full-time executives, engaged in planning, implementing strategies, training, and giving direction to the employees. Compensation for fractional executives is often structured as a monthly fee. These fees vary between $5000 and $15000 depending on the level of interaction and the executive’s experience.


Fractional vs. Freelance vs. Consulting

What is the difference between the fractional workers and freelancers or consultants? Although they have some similarities in the approaches to the fulfillment of tasks, let us consider them separately. 


Fractional vs. Freelance vs. Consulting


1. Freelance Workers 

A freelancer is an independent worker who offers their services on a contractual basis to an employer or an organization. They are result-oriented, self-scheduled, define the extent of their work, control the resources, and are accountable for the timeline. Independent work is generally lower to mid-level. Because of this structure, freelancers usually do not gain profound insights into the company’s functioning, mission, or values.


2. Consultants 

Consultants are employees who are contracted by organizations for a specific period. They offer advice on new programs, specific project requirements, or organizational issues. Consultants are concerned with helping firms implement business strategies. Their participation is often limited to a particular project and is more often at the managerial level rather than operational.


3. Fractional Workers 

Fractional workers advise at the executive level and implement tasks and projects. In contrast to freelancers and consultants, fractional workers become part of the organization’s staff. They acquire extensive organizational experience and fully integrate themselves into the company’s environment. 

These positions are part-time, paid by the number of weekly hours worked, and can be for six months or more. These hires are integrated into the company’s workplace to the same extent as a full-time employee. Learn about the best practices for integrating on-demand experts into startup teams.


A Real-Life Example of Fractional Hiring 

Suppose a firm is required to come up with a new product in a short time. A fractional leader comes in to evaluate the situation and begin the work right away. When the fractional leader has all the authority, he or she directs and manages the required activities for a product launch. Strategic planning and execution expertise define the prospects and develop the strategies for the desired results. 

Thus, the company guarantees the successful implementation of the project by using a fractional leader. This in turn frees the full-time team to attend to other important business aspects. The idea is that the company does not have to build everything from the ground up, and the fractional executive brings the knowledge right away, which means that the process will be faster and more successful.


Why Would You Want High-Level Fractional Talent?

Discover the benefits of accessing top-tier expertise without the full-time cost. Here are some reasons why you need a high-level fractional talent:


1. Temporary or Interim Leadership

Fractional hires fill the gap for companies that require a C-suite executive but do not need a full-time employee. These specialists ensure that important tasks are performed accurately and continue to help out until a superior permanent employee is secured.


2. Lower Financial Outlay 

Leadership is crucial in organization development, and fractional executives provide the required leadership while not exerting too much pressure on organizations’ finances. Taking into account the economic factors we mentioned above, fractional roles are quite sensible from the business perspective. Non-permanent employees affect cash flow to a lesser extent because they are paid less and do not enjoy privileges such as healthcare and other benefits as permanent employees. 


3. Necessary Expertise 

Employment of fractional executives can ease the pressure of running a business. They come with a wealth of knowledge, skills, and experience from large firms. The leadership skills that they possess are also effective and include strong task orientation. These professionals are often hired by start-ups and small businesses because of their efficiency.


Maximize Your Business Potential With Fractional Executives

Outsourcing can revolutionize your business as it offers specialized services without the cost of full-time employment. The approach of fractional executives provides opportunities for startups and small businesses to be agile and acquire the necessary tools to compete effectively. 

OpenGrowth focuses on the right fractional executives and on-demand experts for the businesses. We know the specifics of startups and will help you find the specialists you need to achieve success. This guarantee means that the right candidate for your business needs will be found so that you can accomplish your business objectives in the right manner. 

Find out how OpenGrowth can help you in finding the right fractional executives for your startup. Connect with fractional executives and on-demand specialists for your business to level up to the next stage! Discover how fractional hiring can transform your startup today!

Anurag has been writing content for over eight years, and he is dedicated to it and cannot see himself in any other industry. As a passionate writer, he is interested in business and entrepreneurship. An accomplished technologist and financial expert, he strives to empower others through entrepreneurship, leaving his comfort zone to explore entrepreneurship. Having worked in the Financial sector for more than five years as a full-timer, he also has a keen interest in Corporate Finance ...