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labour

The world of temporary work might be completely unknown to you or one you might not fully understand, however the use of temporary workers is on the up in Australia and has firmly established itself within labour markets worldwide. Challenge Consulting has offered temporary staff to our clients for over 21 years and we’ve noticed a significant and consistent increase in awareness and demand for temp staff across most industries.

What is a Temporary Worker?
A ‘Temporary Worker’ is an employee who is only expected to remain in a position for a limited amount of time. Temporary workers may have the opportunity to obtain a permanent position after that or they may have a set end date. They:

• Work the hours that you need (Full-time/Part- Time)(Minimum 3 hours per day)
• Get paid for the hours that they work and are not entitled to holiday pay or sick pay
• Do not have a contract with the host company
• Are on the agency payroll (i.e. Challenge Consulting pay them for you)

Significant research has gone into the use of temporary workers as part of the workforce globally (www.staffingindustry.com). If you are wondering why you would ever need to use a Temporary Worker, research has found that the main motivation behind employers’ use of temporary workers goes further than just answering short-term demands. The numbers are compelling and the most common reasons for the use of temporary staff are:

1. Flexibility (89.4% of employers voted this the number 1 reason);
2. Value in answering short-term needs (87.8%);
3. Benefit in identifying candidates for long-term positions (75.7%);
4. Cost-effective solution to HR challenges (61.2%)
5. Bringing external expertise into the business (49.1%).

From the candidate’s point of view, there are significant benefits for professionals who offer themselves for temporary employment. The research found that professionals who chose temporary employment or an interim management position over a specific permanent assignment did so for pragmatic reasons;

1. Availability of short-term employment positions even during times of economic difficulty (72% of employees);
2. Opportunity for individuals to develop their professional network (70.7%);
3. Opportunity to develop professional skills (66.7%)
4. Possibility of finding stable employment (59.1%).

Out of the 17 countries surveyed for the report which included the USA and UK, Australia had the most positive attitude towards temporary employment. Generally, the positive response was more common in countries where Temporary Employment has been more established. On a global scale, Australia has the 2nd largest proportion of temporary employees as a percentage of the total working population (2.8%), just behind the UK (3.6%). Employers and employees now know and understand the benefits of temporary employment and accept it as a positive fact of working life.

Whether you are using temporary employees to replace a member of staff taking leave or to cope with an unexpected increase in activity; the speed of turnaround from agencies providing temporary employees was listed as the most important factor for employers seeking to recruit. Previous relationship and cost were both secondary factors.

Temporary employment in Australia is predicted to increase and temporary staffing agencies like Challenge Consulting are likely to become more essential to support business. The ability to provide highly trained employees to sophisticated sectors at short notice is valuable and Challenge Consulting has the experience and resources to respond to your need quickly. If you are looking to employ temporary staff for your business over the Christmas period or any time of year, please contact our Temporary Services Recruitment Specialist – Melissa Lombardo on 02 9221 6422 [email protected].

labour

Last week’s blog post focused on the qualities and characteristics of top temps.

This week, we continue with our temp theme, but from the perspective of companies and the various reasons the choice to use temporary staff makes good business sense for them. 

“The number of temporary employees in Australia has grown dramatically over the last 20 years with just over 400,000 people currently employed on a temporary basis.” *

Whilst a business may and should have a stable core team, there are many instances where additional staff members may be needed. A temporary employee can fulfil many objectives within a business. They can provide cover for absent employees, expertise and skills where there are gaps, project or leadership expertise if/when required and general flexibility for employers, who are cautious about making a permanent hire.

We polled our client readership last week and asked: “What is happening in your business now that makes hiring a temp the best solution?”

Results:

#1 = Ad-hoc needs, eg: special projects, tenders, etc – 36%

#2 = Seasonal workload increases – 27%

Head-count constraints – 18%

Inability to source suitable permanent staff – 9%

Supporting flexible workplace planning practices – 9%

As Jeff Doyle, Adecco Group CEO says, using temporary staff fosters great flexibility, and “enables companies to adjust their labour supply to meet the peaks and troughs of their business needs and it helps them access a range of specialist skills as and when required. In addition, companies use temporary labour to save costs”. **

Hiring a temporary candidate can enable businesses to afford someone that they wouldn’t necessarily be able to afford to hire permanently. Temporary candidates are often highly qualified and experienced and they can add enormous value to a business in the short term.

 “Temporary employment is a strong favourite at the big end of town with all Top 200 ASX listed companies supplementing their workforce with temporary employees.” *** 

Another major reason, though not one of the questions asked in our poll, that companies hire temps is the ‘risk reduction factor’ of a ‘temp-to-perm’ arrangement.

This employment is very common, especially of those employers ‘cautious about making a permanent hire’ cited above, whether this caution stems from head-count or budgetary constraints, or a previous disappointing permanent hiring experience.

Our Temporary Recruitment Consultant, Melissa Lombardo, asked Karli Scully, Macquarie Leasing’s Customer Service Supervisor, why hiring temporary staff works for her team’s needs: “So we can try before we buy … plus we don’t know what the volume of work will be in the future.” Risk-reduction and flexibility are both part of the equation here!

In a temp-to-perm arrangement, a temporary contract is awarded as a trial to assess a candidate’s suitability for a role before hiring them permanently. On the whole, there is less risk involved in hiring a temporary worker. If they choose to hire an individual on an hourly or daily rate, they won’t lose out financially if the candidate suddenly decides to leave the business.

So, how do businesses source their temporary workforce? Well, the “number one method of finding suitable staff for organisations of all sizes is through recruitment agencies”. **** If your business requires temporary staff members for any of the reasons discussed here, our 20+ years of temporary recruitment expertise is here to fulfil your needs. Learn more about our temporary staff services here. 

[Sources: *, **, ***, **** from www.hcamag.com article “Demand for Temp Labour in Australia Explodes”]