staff augmentation

Filling Gaps in Staff Skills

Whether a business is a start-up company, a small business, an established business, or a large one, there may be times when the skills of the current workforce are not up to a task or challenge that the business faces. Advanced technology, for example, may be out of the realm of experience for the information technology (IT) person at the business. Creating a new line of products to meet customer demands may require more skills than are currently in-house. A financial crisis may have left the business without a competent chief financial officer (CFO). How does a business begin to fill in the gaps in skills?

There are a few viable options available. The business can advertise for the professionals it needs executive recruiting. That will require advertising costs, time and money spent interviewing, screening, hiring, and training the new person (s), as well as providing insurances, benefits, and earned leave time. That process may take more time and money than the business has, or is willing to spend at any given time. Professional development for all, or some, of the current staff is another option. It will be an investment, and take some amount of time, but it may be worth it, considering the return on the investment. The current staff already know the business, the policies and procedures, and the goals. Background has already been completed, and benefits are already covered.

Developing the staff means that those skills will be available to the business as long as the staff remain in its employ. Courses and training are available in many areas, such as finance, human resources, administration and operations, internal auditing, people-centric skills, and others. There are also webinars that are inexpensive, and take only one day to complete. Promoting from within, developing skills, and training current staff will only make a business stronger.

The other option is staff augmentation. That fills in gaps by contracting or hiring people with the skills needed on a temporary basis. An agency provides consultants, project managers, IT professionals, and other professionals with the skills required for a project, an expansion, updating technology, or analyzing the business to determine next steps. The practice of staff augmentation is efficient and cost-effective for many businesses. The only drawback is that the process has to be completed for every new project or challenge that arises for the business. Owners can learn about options, costs, and programs for staff development at