Technisource Parent SFN Group to Be Acquired by Randstad Holding

Local IT staffing company Technisource had breaking news to announce in late July. Its parent company, the Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based SFN Group, Inc., is being acquired by Amsterdam's Randstad Holding nv, a leading global provider of HR services. As a sign of SFN's value and bright prospects for the future, the transaction represents a premium of 53 percent over its closing share price on July 19, 2011.

The definitive agreement to combine forces "puts us at the Number 2 staffing company in the world," comments Goretti Heinz, Managing Director of the Hacienda Technisource office. The new global presence is "very exciting," Heinz says. "Randstad operates in 44 countries, which opens up a lot of doors for us. Both companies bring unique strengths as industry pioneers, and this combination will strengthen our geographical footprint and service capabilities."

Technisource is one of six specialty businesses in the SFN Group family of companies. As its name implies, Technisource focuses on IT, offering assessment, managed services, projects, and recruiting. Demand for personnel with IT expertise is strong. "Many of the clients in our local market, which extends from Silicon Valley throughout the East Bay, have budgets to spend on projects in these areas," Heinz reports.

Sectors heating up right now include cloud computing and storage, and work associated with the Android and Apple operating systems. "There is lots of development, upgrade, and maintenance activity going on right now," she says.

That demand appears to be reflected in the Technisource IT Employee Confidence Index for the second quarter of 2011, which was released at the end of July. "A full 70 percent of workers indicated that they were confident in the future of their current employer," the survey reveals, noting that the number is "up six percentage points from the previous quarter."

The corollary to that confidence level is that the proportion of IT workers who believe it is unlikely they will lose their current jobs remains in the same neighborhood, at 71 percent. In fact, 35 percent of IT professionals are considering potential job changes, according to the Index.

As the resource pool tightens, employer-offered training and development programs become important retention tools. "We offer our candidates ongoing training to keep their skills sharp and help in various areas to help them in their career development," Heinz remarks.

As a result of the Randstad acquisition, Technisource becomes part of an entity with at least 1,000 offices nationwide. Heinz points out that parent SFN Group was already very strong in North America, but combining the companies "moves us up from the sixth largest to the second largest IT staffing firm in that geographic area."

Regarded as an industry pioneer, SFN has "sourced, screened, and placed millions of individuals in temporary, temp-to-hire, and full-time jobs for more than 65 years," according to the release announcing the merger. The company delivers "strategic workforce solutions that improve business performance" to approximately 8,000 customers, from Fortune 500 companies to a wide range of small and mid-size organizations. Its family of specialized businesses-Technisource, Tatum, The Mergis Group, Todays Office Professionals, SourceRight Solutions, and Spherion Staffing Services-employs more than 170,000 people annually.

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