Definition

vendor management system (VMS)

A vendor management system (VMS) is an enterprise software platform that enables companies to control the process of procuring and managing a flexible workforce. VMSes are usually Internet-enabled and can be run on premises, in the cloud, or hybrid. They include features that companies use to search for, identify, on-board, track, and manage flexible workers. These are comprised of a few broader categories of workers: contingent or temporary workers, who generally perform jobs in limited time frames, such as filling in for a full-time employee who is out on leave; statement-of-work (SOW) workers, who are employed on a project for a defined time and scope, such as a programmer on an IT development project; and independent contractors or freelancers who work on a contractual basis that could be short or long-term.

A VMS, for example, can enable a company to review and rank job applicants during the hiring process, and then classify those who are hired and make sure they fulfill compliance requirements, such as having the proper work permits or accreditations. The system can track, manage, and process time sheets, contracts, expenses, and invoices associated with the temporary workers. This can result in cost savings, more streamlined processes, and the reduction of non-compliance issues.

Leading VMS companies include Fieldglass (an SAP company), Beeline, Claritum, eBidSystems, Erecruit, Intelex, Peoplefluent, PRO Unlimited, Provade, and SourceSuite.

This was last updated in December 2015

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