EconomyFinancialHR companies change their model

HR companies change their model

“We don’t know what happened,” says Francisco Martínez. At least 900,000 employees who were subcontracted were left off the map, after September 1 of last year. “These people are not internalized, but they did not go to service companies either. We understand that many of them became informal,” says the CEO of Adecco in Mexico.

Héctor Márquez does not exclude this possibility. In order to have a better overview of the effects of the reform to this labor scheme, the Mexican Association of Human Capital Companies (Amech), the group that it presides over, analyzed the data presented by the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS).

In November 2020, there were 5.2 million outsourced workers. By February 2022, 60%, 3.1 million, were incorporated into the payroll of real employers. 22% remained in subcontracting, but providing specialized services (the permitted scheme), while the remaining 18%, the 900,000, are no longer in the IMSS.

“In addition to the informality, a part was left without a job, others could be hired in a fee scheme, assimilated to salaries, copyrights, union or cooperative payment,” explains Márquez.

No personnel outsourcing firm emerged unscathed from the change in legislation, which prohibits workers registered with one company from working for another, unless it is to provide specialized services. For example, a car manufacturer may not outsource auto mechanics, but it may outsource security personnel.

Some of the Amech companies lost 100% of their clients and had to close. Others were reduced to 20%. “There was an 80% impact on the subcontracting industry,” says Márquez.

In the case of Adecco, Martínez knew that 95% of its business was in personnel subcontracting and only 5% in recruitment and selection, consulting, training and payroll services. He predicted a 40% loss, and it was.

As the reform allows the subcontracting only of specialized personnel and in the market there is a greater demand for profiles with digital and technological skills, Adecco presented to the Registry of Providers of Specialized Services and Specialized Works (Repse), authorized by the labor authority, five new divisions: logistics and industrial, back office, one focused on capturing commercial profiles, promotion, marketing and marketing support, one for technological positions and the last one for occupational health, which recruits company doctors and nutritionists for employees.

Martinez is optimistic. Adecco gained 100 new clients last January alone. The expectation is to reduce recovery time and differentiate itself as a specialized service company. The way is that.

New customers

For ManpowerGroup, the reform meant an affectation of 60%. Alberto Alesi, general director of the company for Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America, explains that the company transformed its services and looked towards the specialty of profiles, through new business divisions, such as logistics, life sciences and professional businesses.

The change in the regulation also forced him to focus on verticals that for a long time remained in a drawer, among them, the search for middle and high managerial profiles. Before, the recruitment of low profiles represented 90% of the business.

This ‘new’ aspect represents 15% of the company’s business, when two years ago it was less than 2%. Manpower incorporated artificial intelligence and machine learning into its processes and standardized its global platforms so that the client can see where their recruitment is, in addition to monitoring salaries in real time, according to industry and regions, as well as mapping foreign profiles, with based on your specialty.

“Today we have more clients, but with a smaller number of personnel. If we compare ourselves with the previous year, we are still far below. Specialized services began to grow in August, although not at the volumes of before”, says Alesi. “A client asked us for more than 100 or 300 people and now it has been reduced to a quarter. The recovery is slow and the specialized services market remains very conservative”.


However, Márquez, from Amech, considers that the reform has not been able to help recover the employment that existed before the pandemic, nor has it resolved other pending issues in the labor market.

“Just as there is a fiscal miscellany every year there should be a labor one. That rules and regulations be generated that allow progress in the five labor lags in Mexico: formal work with social security, decent work with better salaries, employee development to reduce the shortage of talent, retention of talent with better working conditions and equity of gender and labor support to vulnerable groups”, she says.

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