CR Fletcher

2010 Greater Syracuse Business of the Year
C.R. Fletcher Associates, Inc.
Certified NYS Women-Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE)

Temp-to-Hire: When and Why It Makes Sense for Employers

Your business is shorthanded.  You could use a few more people, but you’re reluctant to hire anyone full-time because of the economy.  Is it time to bring in temporary workers?  What are the costs and benefits of such a move?

There are a number of benefits to using a temp.

One of the advantages of using temporary workers is the flexibility it offers.  It enables you to quickly adjust to changes in workload.  If you have seasonal bumps in demand, or if there is an unexpected demand surge, temporary workers will help you quickly get up to speed on production.

Another advantage of using a temp is the opportunity to evaluate the person without having to make a commitment.  If you are considering the person for a full-time position, you can see how productive the person is and how well he or she fits into your business.  Some businesses, in fact, use temporary staffing services for its pool of workers from which to recruit.  Or you can use the temporary employee to fill the position while you look for a full-time replacement.  And if the temp is not working out, all you need do is contact the staffing service and it will take care of the rest.

Temporary workers usually are less expensive than full-time employees.  You are not responsible for providing any benefits.  Their employer is the staffing service, not you.  The service is responsible for recruiting, hiring, screening, and testing workers.  The service is responsible for payroll and payroll paperwork, unemployment compensation insurance, and taxes.

Traditionally, temp workers have been used mostly in lower level, unskilled positions.  But that is changing.  Temps now are used in practically every industry and in skilled positions for a range of short-term projects in levels from unskilled labor to even doctors and nurses and everything in between.  Even in the legal field, firms are now using attorneys on a temporary basis.

Some employers assume that temporary workers just don’t work as hard as a full-time employee would.  But research has shown that this is not the case. It found that temporary workers actually work harder, and that their performance continued to improve when they were hired as full-time workers.

What are the drawbacks?

If you do bring on temporary workers, a certain amount of training will be necessary to get them up to speed on the specific projects they will be doing, no matter if they are skilled or unskilled.  If, however, you use the same temporary workers on an ongoing basis, the amount of training needed will be a lot less.

Using a temporary worker may also be impacted by safety issues.  Some jobs are obviously more dangerous than others.  Studies have shown that the number and severity of injuries on the job are higher with temp workers.  So, you will have to make sure all safety measures are taken when using a temp, and never let a temporary work a job without making sure he or she can do it safely.

Also, as an employer you must be aware of the legal issues involved in using temp workers.  The contract must be clear about the status of these workers and that they are not eligible for the benefits regular employees receive.

C.R. Fletcher can help Syracuse-area companies identify and source high-caliber temporary workers for direct-hire, temp-to-hire and temporary positions. Contact us today.

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