Hiring a temporary worker

In the 1990s, strong economic growth out-paced the rate of growth in the nation.
That prompted an increase in demand for recruiting/staffing firms that supply
direct-hire recruitment to their clients and
temporary help services to fill short- or long-term positions during peak seasons,
absences, vacations and medical leaves. For
nearly 15 years, there has been an increasing demand for such temporary help services. According to the American Staffing
Association, at least 90 percent of companies in the U.S. use some form of temporary
staffing. The demand for temporary help
persists because staffing services have
proved invaluable in helping businesses cut
costs while still maintaining a functional
employee base.

Smart Business spoke with Cindy Biter of
Delta Dallas to learn more about how temporary staffing firms can send employers
the candidates they need and prepare those
candidates to function successfully with
employers, and how employers and recruiting firms can work together to satisfy current staffing needs.

How do temporary staffing firms benefit companies?

In a constantly fluctuating economy, temporary help services can provide qualified
workers on short notice and on an as-needed basis by matching an employer’s work-flow needs to economic ups and downs.
Temporary help services can offer a variety
of short- and long-term savings for businesses and organizations. These could
include: controlling recruitment costs, saving on benefits and taxes, and even managing long-term personnel costs. It is important for an employer to partner with a
recruiting firm that can aid in the evaluation
and streamlining of present recruitment
processes and costs.

What are the primary criteria when selecting
a recruiting firm to fill temporary positions?

Let’s face it, companies look to partner
with recruiting services that have their best
interest at heart. The primary concern when
searching for a recruiting firm is to ensure
its screening process will bring you the best temporary help available. It is important to
make sure that firms are screening candidates thoroughly. Each firm has its own procedural policies for sourcing candidates,
and you should deal only with firms that
have thorough criteria for both their
recruiters and the candidates that are sent
to you.

1. Is your recruiter certified in temporary
staffing? (Certified Temporary Specialist) 2.
How does the firm ensure the temporary
candidates sent to you have the skills you
need? (How does the firm test candidate
skill sets?) 3. Does the firm guarantee the
quality of its temporary employees? (Does it
monetarily stand by its screening process?)

What criteria do staffing firms look for when
selecting well-qualified temporary employees to present to companies?

Reputable staffing firms will adhere to a
strict set of tangible and intangible attributes in their hiring criteria. Other than the
obvious assets, such as punctuality, a skill
set compatible with the job requirements
and a professional appearance, there are a
number of intangible items the staffing
agency looks for when selecting temporary
employees. Clients often report that it is, in
fact, the intangibles that count when it comes to temporary employees. For
employers, temporary employees who
demonstrate positive attitudes and have a
strong work ethic set themselves apart from
ordinary workers who are simply looking to
the short-term payday at the end of the

How important is a temporary employee’s
attitude in the hiring process?

Quite possibly, the No. 1 attribute of a
good temporary employee is attitude. A
good attitude will carry a candidate through
the toughest situations and potentially to a
full-time opportunity. Even if the employee
doesn’t like an assignment, optimism and a
proactive attitude will help him or her stand
out from the crowd. Every temporary
assignment is an opportunity for an employee to learn new skills. Even if employees are
not ultimately offered a full-time position,
they can still walk away with expertise that
will help them in the future.

Do temporary employees gain anything from
their assignments?

Sure. Staffing firm personnel encourage
candidates to see the networking opportunity in every temporary assignment. They
may not be offered a full-time job with an
employer that temporarily utilizes their talents, but good news travels fast. If temporary employees perform well for a company,
their supervisors will give positive feedback
to the staffing agency.

Should temporary employees maintain contact after their jobs are completed?

Temporary employees should stay connected with their staffing firm and specifically their staffing professional throughout
their job search. If temporary employees
stay connected to their recruiter, it is an indication of communication skills, diligence
and professionalism. All of these are qualities a recruiter will feel confident presenting
to its clients.

CINDY BITER is vice president of business development with Delta Dallas. Reach her at (972) 788-2300 or [email protected].