Vic Jack MRCSA from Maslow People and Culture Agency is one of a growing number of New Zealanders choosing to work in a unique way. Fractional work is a relatively new concept that’s beneficial for individuals and game changing for start-up and scaling businesses. RCSA spoke with Vic about the emerging trend that’s helping small organisations grow while plumping up individual resumes.
What is a fractional employee?
Fractional employees are hired by companies for a ‘fraction’ of their time. They are usually highly skilled in their function (at a C Suite or Senior Management level) and are a cost-effective way for businesses to employ senior level expertise economically and strategically without exhausting their cash runway.
Fractional is a new kind of terminology. In the last few years, you might have heard of ‘virtual’ worker like virtual CFO’s, virtual CMO’s, virtual CEO’s. The difference and benefit of fractional workers is that they operate on day rate or retainer and are fully integrated and imbedded within an organisation. Virtual staff work remotely and are semi-integrated. Similarly, their job is functional and strategic but is not fully integrated. A fractional worker is like having a full -time employee, but on a fractional time basis. They are someone who aligns with the purpose and the vision of the organisation, offer expertise and strategic leadership and oversight and execution of operational work and deliver results, fractionally.
What type of organization benefits from using fractional staff?
Startups and fractional workers are a match made in heaven. The startup can pick and choose staff that align with their values and mission and sign them on to do the job in a way they can afford.
Let's just say a startup needs a CFO. It’s tough to afford senior level expertise when you are starting out. Hiring someone fractionally is a good strategy. A fractional divides their time and works within the organisation maybe three days a week at first, then drops that back to one day a week or even one day a month. Later, when the company starts to scale, they might want to bring that person back again, or have them help hire the permanent person into the role.
How Fractional Work Compares (Credit: fractional.co.nz)
Why would someone choose to work fractionally?
Working fractionally is a great opportunity for an individual to gain experience across a variety of sectors. Fractional roles allow people to generate an income while refining their skills and progressing their careers. They add expertise and value. Working fractionally across multiple organisations looks great on a CV. Its also not uncommon for a fractional employee to be offered a permanent role for the startup or the business they were instrumental in growing. There are always opportunities to grow or have equity inside a business.
Why do you love working fractionally?
I really value working across different types of organizations and having the flexibility to work the way I want. As a recruiter with my own agency, I do work across a lot of different types and sizes of organizations. Currently we are educating the public and our clients about fractional execs and the benefits of employing and engaging workers in this way. The feedback thus far has been positive, but we need continue to educate CEO’s and company stakeholders to the benefits of fractional executive and get the word out there. There needs to be more education that this type of work exists as many organizations don’t even realise fractional executive are an option. That said, in the past 6 months there has been a surge in interest and media has started to pick up on the concept of fractionals and we are seeing the trajectory start to escalate.
How can people learn more about Fractional Work?
There are websites in Australia and NZ that connect organisations to Fractional workers. It’s like a marketplace with lots of information available. Fractional people, like myself can list who they are, their day rate, what their levels of expertise is, what drives them and what their values are. There is also an educative section that covers how to work with people and the kind of contracts that you can have with fractional workers.
These websites are:
I think the more we exposure we get, the more commonplace Fractional work will become and the benefits of working this way will become apparent.