Have you considered bringing on temporary staff in place of a permanent employee? There are a lot of benefits to hiring a temporary employee instead of signing on a permanent one. Whether you aren’t sure of how long you need an extra hand for, or you need someone available really quickly, a temporary employee is a great option to consider.
There is a lot great talent out there; skilled people who are ready to work, keen to show their worth, and happy to do so as a temp. Not only people who can assist with paperwork overflows, but also technically specialised people ready to step into a laboratory, manufacturing plant, or research facility.
Especially during periods of economic uncertainty, temps can be a fantastic, relatively cheap, and low-risk option to help you through the tough times. However, regardless of your business’ current outlook, there are a lot of benefits to hiring temporary staff.
What is a temporary employee?
The term is very self-descriptive – a temporary employee, or temp, is someone you bring in on an impermanent basis, with no guarantee of the length of employment. This is distinct from a fixed-term or contracted employee, who, while also being an impermanent employee, has a pre-defined period of employment – e.g. 3 months, 6 months, 12 months – which is fixed and unchangeable. Temporary staff are often brought on for as little as one to three months, and importantly, they are with you only for as long as your need their skills, whereas a contracted employee is kept on for the entire duration of their contract, even if their work dries up or their project finishes early, and you no longer really need them.
Benefits of using a temp
There are a lot of good reasons to consider hiring a temp. Temps can be of great benefit to businesses of all shapes and sizes, in all sorts of industries. Here are a few of the benefits you may see by including temps in your labour force.
Your bottom line:
Temporary employees can be one of the most cost-effective ways to bring in new staff, especially in the short term. You can hire as many temps as you need to get through a busy period, without having to commit to long term hires. This is great for periods of unexpected work volume, seasonal production, or other fluctuations in your need for labour.
Then there are all the other expenses above and beyond a permanent employee’s base salary, including payroll costs, profit shares and insurance, for example.
If you have semi-unpredictable or seasonal workload, a temp is a great option to help with your busy periods. They are available quickly, relatively cheaply, and they only cost you for the time that you need them. If you need someone to cover a sudden absence, or to fill in while another employee undergoes some extensive training, a temp can fill that gap.
By including temps in your employment strategy you have the freedom and flexibility to make the most of your permanent employees without sacrificing your business’s overall productivity.
Temps have often worked for a number of different companies over a relatively short period of time. These workers bring a wealth of fresh skills and great ideas to your business. They have seen what works well and not so well in other companies that are often similar to, or competing directly with your own.
We regularly hear of temps going into a new position and having some great ideas for improvements. You might be looking for a production operator, so you hire a temp who not only has great production experience, but it turns out they also have practical knowledge of health and safety, or lean manufacturing, and can share this experience with your team.
In the current economic climate, this is especially relevant; there are plenty of very well qualified professionals ready to go, and happy to step into a relatively junior-level role on a temporary basis. For example, we have recently sourced someone for an entry level pharmaceutical QA temp role who came from a great background, with many years as a technical manager in the food industry. She took a role paying less than she typically would in order to gain some great experience – it was a mutually beneficial situation for the temp and the employer.
A common reaction to busy periods, is to overwork current employees. More often than not, it will negatively effect productivity as employees become fatigued, but can also have a terrible impact on the attitude and morale of your team. Bringing in a temp to help when things get busy can be great to boost the morale of the whole business.
Don’t force your team to work overtime, to miss having dinner with their families. Bring in an extra hand or two just for the busy periods and everyone will be happier for it, as well as more productive! By bringing in a helping hand, you show your employees that you aren’t willing to overburden them, and that you have the whole team’s well-being prioritised during periods of increased pressure.
Retain your permanent employees
Following on from the previous point, if organisational morale becomes too low, your permanent employees may start looking for greener pastures. One of the most common complaints we hear from job-seekers is that they have been going too long with extended hours or under too pressure, and so are looking for a new position. Losing your well-trained, permanent staff can be a massive cost – financially and otherwise – to your business. If you bring on a temp, you can mitigate the chance that your longer-term employees (into whom you have invested a lot of resources) start looking to leave, and save on the extensive costs of hiring and training a permanent employee.
Turn around speed
Temp staff are often readily available, and able to work within a few days of when you start to look (even the next day!). If you need to urgently replace or cover for someone, a temp is a great way to get someone on board quickly to ensure that you don’t have work going unattended. You will then have time for the person to either return to work, or if you need to replace them, you have the breathing room of knowing that the work is covered while assessing your next steps.
Recruitment agencies will typically have qualified people ready to go – temps who have often been in previous assignments, and so are known to be good workers. Using a temp service is a fantastic way of quickly hiring a new employee with confidence.
Enjoy an extended job interview
Hiring the right person is not a simple task. A new employee not only needs the right skills and experience, but they need to fit within your organisation’s culture, they need the right attitude, and the willingness to grow with your company. Engaging a temp can be a great way to discover a new permanent employee. As you work with them, you will learn more about their skills, and how they fit within your team, and the business’s values. You may like them so much that you find or create a permanent position for them.
Temporary employees can be a massive benefit to businesses of all shapes and sizes. If you would like some more information about our temping services, see: Scitex’s Temp and Contract Solutions and get in touch with one of our consultants.