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Utmost, a platform that helps Workday customers manage their extended workforce, including freelancers, contractors, and other professionals, has raised $21 million in a series B round of funding.

The freelance industry is flourishing, by all accounts. In its recent State of Contingent Workforce Management report, Ardent Partners found that 43% of the U.S. workforce is now built on a contingent worker foundation — up from 20% a decade ago.

Workday-native

Founded out of Dublin, Ireland in 2018, Utmost touts itself as a Workday-native alternative to legacy vendor management systems (VMS), which companies use to serve their non-employee staffing needs. With Utmost, enterprises are promised full visibility into their broader workforce with data-driven insights for procurement, HR, finance, and IT departments.

Utmost provides transparency into extended workforce spend, something that is typically tracked using multiple systems. Companies can also garner data such as what fraction of their workforce is made of contractors and where they are based.

“Utmost centralizes this data so executive leadership can see how they are spending across the total workforce,” Utmost marketing VP Neha Goel told VentureBeat.

Above: Utmost dashboard

The main problem Utmost is looking to solve is that existing VMS offerings tend to focus on sourcing workers from traditional staffing companies, which limits the pool of available talent. Plus their systems don’t play nicely with modern human capital management systems, such as Workday. So while a company might use Workday for most of their HR needs, hiring personnel have to use another system to book temporary workers. Utmost bypasses this by plugging directly into Workday.

According to Goel, the platform’s core selling point is that it brings “total workforce visibility” to enterprises. In its three years in business, the company has managed to accrue major customers such as Ecolab, NortonLifeLock, and Colonial Life.

Among the touted benefits is improved compliance. “You can create consistent processes for onboarding and offboarding so that workers gain or lose access to facilities, IT, or systems access,” said Goel, who added that this can also help reduce worker misclassification. “Hiring managers don’t know if they need an employee or a contractor or an agency — they need to get work done. Utmost creates a single place to source workers and recommends the appropriate worker type.”

Ecosystem

Workday, for the uninitiated, is one of the major players in the enterprise SaaS software space, with products spanning finance, HR, business planning, and more. It also represents part of a growing array of companies adopting a Salesforce-type ecosystem approach that encourages third parties to develop integrations and build on top of their platform while directly investing in startups via a dedicated venture capital fund.

Indeed, Utmost counts Workday as a closely integrated technology partner — and also a financial backer. Workday Ventures invested in Utmost’s $11.2 million series A round two years ago, and it has now added to the recent $21 million series B. This round was led by Mosaic Ventures, with participation from Greylock Partners, Acadian Ventures, and Alumni Ventures Group.

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