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Jacqui GrahamJuly 7, 20244 min read

Prioritising Meaningful Work to Attract Top Contractor Talent in 2024

The 2024 State of Contracting report has unveiled a significant shift in contractor priorities, highlighting that contractors now value meaningful work significantly over the prestige of a company's brand. Only 19% selected brand name as important, compared to what a company has to offer their contractors by means of financial reward, meaningful work, values, flexibility, and stability.

Historical Importance of Brand Name for Contractors

Historically, a company's brand name played a significant role in attracting contract talent due to its perceived stability, career enhancement, access to superior resources, and a reputable work environment - as well as looking ‘great on the resume’.  Contractors often chose well-known company names for the credibility, professional development opportunities, and the industry influence they offered. However, as highlighted in the report, priorities have definitely been shifting over the last few years towards meaningful work and personal fulfilment. While brand prestige, of course, remains a factor, talent acquisition managers must now focus on providing impactful projects and growth opportunities to attract high-level contractors.

Here are some key strategies, insights and actions to guide your talent acquisition efforts:

1. Emphasise Project Impact

Contractors are increasingly driven by the impact of their work. You need to highlight the meaningful aspects of the projects you are offering. Showcase how the contractor's contributions will make a real difference, whether it's through innovative technology, social impact, or contributing to industry advancements.

  • Action: In job descriptions and during interviews, focus on the project's goals, the difference it makes, and its long-term impact. Provide real-life examples of how previous contractors have contributed to significant milestones.

2. Showcase Opportunities for Skill Development

High-level contractors seek projects that challenge them and help them grow professionally.  Oncores SOC report highlighted that 83% of respondents looked for learning and upskilling opportunities when considering a new company.  

  • Action: Outline the skills that contractors will develop during the project. Mention any training programs, mentorship opportunities, or access to cutting-edge tools and technologies that your company offers.

3. Highlight Autonomy and Flexibility

Contractors often value the autonomy and flexibility that contract work provides. In fact 71% of our Contractors looked for a company culture offering workplace flexibility.  You need to make it clear that your company supports flexible working conditions and empowers contractors to take ownership of their work.

  • Action: Promote your company’s flexible work policies and emphasise the level of autonomy contractors will have. Share testimonials from current or past contractors who have thrived under your flexible work arrangements.

4. Communicate Your Company’s Purpose and Values

While a company's brand may not be the top priority, the underlying purpose and values of the organisation still very much matter. Ensure that your company’s mission and values align with the meaningful work contractors are seeking.

  • Action: During recruitment, articulate your company’s mission, values, and culture. Share stories that reflect your commitment to these values and how they translate into meaningful work for contractors.

5. Build a Strong Project Portfolio

A diverse and impressive project portfolio can definitely attract top talent. Contractors want to be associated with projects that are reputable and have a significant impact.

  • Action: Develop and showcase a portfolio of high-impact projects your company has executed. Use case studies, success stories, and detailed project descriptions to attract potential contractors.

6. Provide Clear Career Pathways

Even contractors are interested in hearing about long-term career development opportunities. Demonstrate how taking on a contract with your company can lead to future opportunities, either within your organisation or in the industry at large.

  • Action: Create and communicate pathways for contractors to evolve and develop to work towards more significant, advanced skilled and higher-paying contracts in the future.

7. Foster a Collaborative Environment

A positive, collaborative work environment is crucial. Ensure that contractors feel included and valued as part of the team, even if they are only with you for a short time.  Transparent communication and a collaborative work environment topped the chart in Oncores SOC survey for the most important aspect of workplace culture to top tier contractors.

  • Action: Develop initiatives to integrate contractors into your team seamlessly. Use team-building activities, regular check-ins, and open communication channels to make contractors feel like a vital part of the team.


Understanding that contractors prioritise meaningful work over most other criteria, including their brand name, is crucial for talent acquisition and hiring managers in 2024. By putting into place some of the actions above you will be able to attract and retain the very best contractor talent to your company. Implementing these strategies will not only help you meet your recruitment goals but also foster a more engaged and motivated contingent workforce.  

To read more exclusive insights straight from the horse's mouth then head straight over to Oncore’s State of Contracting Survey 2024 and download your copy today.