How Tech Staffing Agencies Can Help with the New Independent Contractor Ruling

Is the Department of Labor’s (DOL) new independent contractor rule throwing a wrench in your talent acquisition strategy? First of all, virtual hug, we know this is a complicated law, and as with any new law, it can feel a bit like the Wild West! CA Employers have already become familiar with the dilemma of classifying someone as an independent contractor vs. an employee through Assembly Bill 5 (AB5).  Now in effect as of March 11, the (DOL) has  unveiled its long-awaited final rule in the classification of independent contractors. This rule, has significant implications for business across industries, particularly those in the dynamic and rapidly evolving tech sector.


Understanding the Framework

To fully understand the effects this has on your hiring efforts, Let’s dive into the foundation. The DOL’s independent contractor final rule indicates whether a worker should be classified as an employee or an independent contractor.

Through narrowing the classification of independent contractors, the rule aims to prevent misclassification and ensure that workers receive the appropriate protections and benefits under the federal labor law.

An important note about this law is that it doesn’t adopt the ABC test that California or New Jersey employers might be familiar with. According to the US Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division, the ABC test would define the classification of independent contractors based on a three-factor test. However, now the only factor involved is the “economic reality test” used by courts to differentiate an employee from an independent contractor “which relies on the totality of the circumstances where no one factor is determinative.”

In layman’s terms, whether an individual is an employee or independent contract is not dependent on title, choice, agreement or pay status,

This framework involves assessing different factors:

  1. The degree of control exerted by the employer
  2. The worker’s opportunity for profit or loss
  3. The nature of the working relationship
  4. The worker’s investment in facilities and equipment

Impact on Tech Hiring with New Independent Contractor Rule

The tech industry, known for its reliance on independent contractors for specialized skills and project-based work, is particularly affected by the DOL’s final rule. Many tech companies engage independent contractors for software development, IT consulting, cybersecurity, and other critical functions. However, misclassifying these workers as independent contractors when they should be classified as employees can have serious consequences. According to Barclay Damon, it may result in legal liabilities, including back wages, taxes, and penalties, as well as damage to the company’s reputation and brand.


Tips for Tech Hiring Companies

Navigating the complexity of the DOL’s independent contractor final rule requires a proactive approach. This is why partnering with a reputable staffing agency such as Prosum can provide valuable assistance. Here’s why:


  1. Expert Knowledge of the Rule: Prosum specializes in workforce management and have a deep understanding of labor regulations, including the DOL’s independent contractor rule. We can help companies hiring talent interpret the rule correctly and ensure compliance in their hiring practices.


  1. Risk Mitigation: By entrusting the hiring process to Prosum, companies can reduce the risk of misclassification by carefully vetting candidates and classifying them appropriately, minimizing the likelihood of legal repercussions and financial penalties.


  1. Access to Top Talent: Prosum maintains an extensive network of technology professionals, allowing clients to access a diverse pool of talent with the skills and expertise they need. Whether companies require temporary contractors for short-term projects or permanent hires for long-term positions, Prosum can connect them with qualified individuals who meet their specific requirements.


  1. Administrative Support: Managing payroll, benefits, and other administrative tasks for independent contractors can be time-consuming and complex. Prosum streamlines these processes, handling payroll administration, tax withholding, and compliance-related paperwork on behalf of tech companies, thereby freeing up their time and resources to focus on core business activities. The Society for Human Resource Management states that most temporary workers assigned by staffing firms are classified as W-2 employees so they wouldn’t be affected by the rules.


Solve Your IT Hiring and Employment Challenges with Prosum

The DOL’s independent contractor final rule poses challenges for companies hiring independent contractors but partnering with Prosum can help mitigate risks, ensure compliance, and access top talent, ultimately driving success and innovation in the tech sector.

We’ve been providing information technology staffing and recruiting services for more than 25 years—let us help you find the motivated candidates you need Contact our team today to get started.