Last year was the year things began to bounce back from the pandemic. While Covid-19 still had a huge impact, it was also a growth year — particularly in healthcare staffing. Staffing Industry Analysts estimates that staffing industry revenue rose 28% in 2021 after falling by 9% in 2020. Healthcare staffing helped fuel that growth in a big way; travel nurse staffing revenue was up an estimated 150% alone. Meanwhile, IT staffing revenue was up 13% year over year.
However, the Fastest-Growing US Staffing Firms list, sponsored by The Braff Group, is based on a five-year compound average growth rate, so this year’s list is based on revenue from 2017 through 2021. And while those years had their ups and downs, the number of companies on this year’s list more than doubled to 122 from last year’s 56. It also outpaces by far the number of firms on the 2020 list, which is based on revenue years that predated the pandemic; 76 firms appeared on that year’s list.
The firms on this year’s Fastest-Growing US Staffing Firms list generated a median compound annual growth rate of 30.3% from 2017 through 2021. That’s up from last year’s median of 26.1%.
What’s behind the growth? Several firms on this list cited the importance of people — internal staff, contingent workers and customers. Of particular concern for many were their internal workers.
“When we create that positive environment, when employees feel highly engaged and valued and they see a clear path to how they can be successful, they stay longer, they refer their friends, they take better care of our clients and associate employees,” says Paul Sorensen, CEO of fourth-ranked Partners Personnel. “We take care of internal colleagues, and then they take care of clients and associates.”
Sorensen also cites an African proverb that says if you want to go fast, go alone. But if you want to go far, then go with a team.
The top 10 staffing firms on the list this year posted a median CAGR of 120.9%. These firms are:
Number of firms on this year’s Fastest-Growing US Staffing Firms list — 122 — outpaces previous two lists
- Catapult Staffing LLC (dba Catapult Solutions Group)
- Summit Medical Staffing LLC
- Partners Personnel
- Spire Healthcare LLC
- ProLink Staffing Services LLC
- GQR Global Markets
- Floyd Lee Locums
- Lead Health
- Gale Healthcare Solutions
Among all 122 firms on the list, IT ranked as the most-common segment, with 45 firms saying they provided IT staffing. However, the second most-common segment was travel nursing, with 35 firms on the list indicating they provide this type of staffing. Counting all firms on the list that provided some type of healthcare staffing — travel nurse, allied healthcare, per diem nursing, locum tenens or those simply listed as “healthcare” — there were 62.
This year’s list also included a number of large firms. Twenty-nine staffing firms on the list posted revenue of more than $300 million in 2021. Six of those had revenue of more than $1 billion: Aya Healthcare, Insight Global, Medical Solutions, Cross Country Healthcare, ProLink Staffing Services LLC and Favorite Healthcare Staffing LLC. Aya Healthcare had revenue of $5.72 billion, while Insight Global posted revenue of $3.36 billion and Medical Solutions had revenue of $2.37 billion.
California was home to the most firms on the list, with 14 headquartered in the Golden State. It was followed by New Jersey with 13; Florida with 11; Georgia with eight; and Nebraska, New York and Texas with seven each. The city hosting the headquarters for the most staffing firms was Omaha, Nebraska, with seven.
To qualify for the list, staffing firms had to post at least $1 million in revenue in 2017 and have a compound annual growth rate in revenue of at least 15% between 2017 and 2021. All numbers are self-reported; however, firms on the list had to verify revenue under a new procedure added last year. Where companies have international operations, only US revenue is used in calculations for the list.
As in the past, this year we interviewed top executives at each of the 10 fastest-growing firms. Their stories are available at fastestgrowing.staffingindustry.com/.