- Know what opportunities may come from a placement with a temp agency. Many agencies work with one of the traditional temp, temp-to-perm, or direct hire models, and while Contemporaries also works within these three standards, we’re different in that most of the temps we place for short-term assignments end up “going perm,” that is, being offered permanent employment either in the same capacity or for a different internal position that one wouldn’t eligible to apply for without first working as a temp for the same company (i.e. getting your foot in the door).
- The temp agency is your employer, not your on-site supervisor. Many companies use staffing agencies because they take on all the costs associated with new and contracted employees: W-9s, health insurance, workers comp, payroll, etc. The agency absorbs all the risk and potential legal ramifications of its employees (like any other employer), and it’s important to remember this even though you “report” daily to another person at a different company. Similarly, your resume should list the temp agency as your place of employment, not the company with whom you were placed on assignment.
- Understand the relationship between your employer, the agency, and your on-site placement, the agency’s client. The agency’s job is to find and send good candidates who are right for a specific position at a specific company– at Contemporaries we call this process “Right Match.” We are only interested in sending clients those candidates who can meet each expectations and add value to the company for the duration of their assignment; likewise, we are only interested in sending candidates to those companies where they will fit in, grow, and thrive.
- Honesty is the best policy. In the authors’ words: “Recruiters can only do their jobs well when candidates are honest with them… You may be hesitant to share information for fear that it will impact your consideration for a position, but if your recruiter knows ahead of time they can work with it… and assist you in finding the right position.” If you have outstanding interviews, are applying other places, or have upcoming appointments (even dental)– let your recruiter know! We really can work with this information AND keep you working on an assignment.
We at Contemporaries believe there is a place for everyone, a candidate for every client and a client for every candidate. These tips are great for understanding what a temp agency is, how it works, and how it can work for you– no matter where you might be in your job and career search.