If you have ever been unemployed you know the frustration of completing numerous online applications for employment and yet you never hear back from any of the companies. Additionally, you decide not to work with a staffing firm because you don't want a temporary job but a permanent job. This could be a significant career mistake.
Why? Staffing firms know the local hiring markets and they have direct relationships with human resource contacts at numerous companies. They also have information on future job openings even before they are posted and are a talent source for large companies.
According to the American Staffing Association, the number of temporary workers has increased by 45 percent since the 2007 Great Recession ended in 2009 with over 2.9 million people employed by staffing firms every day. On average 11.5 million temporary and contract workers are hired by U.S. staffing firms over the course of a year.
Staffing firms become the bridge to permanent employment, with 88 percent of employees stating their temporary or contract work made them more employable. It also allowed them to keep their skills current and in many cases learn new skills on the job.
Being in the staffing business for 15 years, I have experienced the joy and exhilaration from employees who accepted a temporary assignment and continued with that company much longer than they anticipated and for some it became a way of life lasting for many years. Then there are those who are hired permanently upon completing their very first assignment.
There is a story I like to share about "Tom" which is not his real name, but only for the purposes of this story. Over 10 years ago, Tom contacted me seeking employment in the Fox Cities for his hometown had few if any opportunities. He had been unemployed for over a year. Tom had great skills, but the longer you are unemployed, it becomes a negative in the hiring process for many employers. I convinced him to accept a one year assignment whereby he could use both his financial and his technical skills. While on this assignment, he would also learn PeopleSoft, which was a software program in high demand. For Tom, it would be like going to school to learn new skills and be employed. At the end of the assignment, he was hired permanently by the company. The last time I checked, he was still working there. By the way, he loved his new job, the challenge to utilize his skills and the people he worked with.
Staffing firms are a great partner to assist you with your job search. They can assess your skills to determine the best job opportunity, provide job coaching, interview preparation, and provide ongoing supervision while on the assignment. With the Affordable Care Act, more companies will be outsourcing jobs through staffing firms to fill both temporary and long-term contracted positions. These positions pay competitive rates. If you want continued employment, keep your skills sharp.
- Monica Vomastic is president/CEO of Landmark Staffing Resources in Appleton. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.