Hiring temporary employees is becoming a method small and medium businesses use to "test-drive" potential permanent employees. Temporary hiring can offer a great situation for the candidate and your company, and often can lead to a high quality permanent hire.
More than two million people work as temporary employees in the United States, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This includes independent contractors, on-call candidates, freelance, and temporary or part-time workers.
Temporary to permanent hiring has been employed by recruiting and staffing firms for ages, but is quickly becoming a method small to medium sized businesses are using as a way to "test-drive" potential full-time staff. A temporary worker is brought in when a position becomes available and works for a period of time before they are either offered a full-time position or let go.
Using the temporary to permanent arrangement can be a win-win situation for both the candidate and your company. The advantage of temporary to permanent hiring is that the person in charge of hiring makes a more informed decision about offering the candidate a full-time slot, while covering all key functions in the meantime.
Plus, many temporary candidates are looking for permanent positions, but are willing to offer their services on a part-time basis in hopes of proving their worth and landing the permanent gig. In fact, 74 percent of temporary candidates are seeking full-time employment by temping first according to the American Staffing Association. And, to their credit, a whopping 72 percent of temporary employees surveyed by the American Staffing Association obtained permanent positions with the employer for whom he or she worked part-time.
Bringing in a temporary worker provides you with a longer time to evaluate a candidate. You get to observe the applicant's skills, personality, and performance as he or she works. Temporary and contract work also provides a bridge to permanent employment as candidates also try out a prospective employer and showcase their skills for a permanent job.
While some claim that there is a stigma associated with temporary workers - namely poor quality candidates – this is just not the case. Many excellent candidates choose temporary and contract work as an employment option, reports the American Staffing Association:
The trend toward using temporaries and other non-regular employees is growing, and with good reason. There are several advantages to using temporary employees in your business:
Cost - You may save on payroll administration and fringe benefits costs. You also save on cost-per-hire and the costs associated with making a bad hiring decision.
Time - You reduce the amount of time spent recruiting overall because if a temporary worker meets your qualifications, you hire them immediately, and avoid sorting through resumes and conducting lengthy interviews. Hiring temporary workers is simply a tryout to permanent hiring.
No long-term commitment - If you're not sure whether you have enough work to keep a full-time employee busy, start them off as a temporary employee and find out.
Possibility of a permanent hire - If a particular temp worker seems to fit well into your business, you can offer to hire him or her as a permanent employee. In this case, you avoid the risks of a probationary period you normally have with a new hire.
Fill vacancies - When your full-time employees are vacationing, taking maternity leave, or otherwise cannot fill their position; you fill the void by hiring a temporary worker to relieve the strain placed on your everyday staff. Your company stays on schedule, and you gain a candidate you can call on should the need ever arise again. This candidate now becomes a possible replacement for your current full-time employee should they ever leave your company.
Because one of the advantages of the temporary to permanent approach is hiring someone you know will be a good fit for the company, the transition should be seamless. But remember: there's competition for temporary talent, and chances are that if this candidate is filling a temporary need for you, he or she may have filled this same need at one time or another for a competitor.
If you are interested in converting a temporary employee to a permanent employee the best solution is to move quickly. Having a solid transition procedure in place is one of the best ways to seize talented temporary workers and convert them to permanent employees before the competition.
Effective employee onboarding has a positive domino effect: it ensures that new hires feel welcome and prepared, giving them confidence and resources to make an impact within the organization, and also allowing the company to move forward.
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