How to Stand Out on a Temporary Assignment

And Therefore Have a Better Chance of Being Hired on Full Time

Many people think the job opportunities offered via staffing agencies such as Helpmates are “just” temporary assignments.

Many are, but many of our assignments do see our associates getting hired on to our client’s own payroll after a few weeks or months. (A very happy day for us as well as for our employee and client!)

Gardena staffing

We understand that many folks are looking for steady, full-time work. “Temporary assignment” doesn’t sound nearly as reliable (although many of our temporary opportunities last for several weeks or even months).

So because we understand you may be hoping to turn that short-term assignment into a full-time position with a client, we’ve put together a short primer on how to turn a temporary assignment into a more permanent position.

Step 1: Be a great temporary specialist

Take on the assignment with the attitude that it’s a real job. Which it is. We wouldn’t have hired you and sent you to our client on assignment unless we thought you had the skills needed and would be a great addition to our client’s workforce.

In addition to your job skills, our clients are looking for skills such as commitment, a great work ethic, dependability, curiosity, and so on.

Showcasing these qualities is the first step you need to take for a client to look at you as a potential new-hire someday.

Step 2: Think of your assignment as the first few weeks in a new job

You know how it is: you start a new job and you want to impress your new boss and colleagues. You’re on your best behavior. You try to do things before being asked and solving problems you know your boss needs solved. After all, that’s really why employers hire people for: to help them reach their goals and solve problems.

Working on assignment allows you to “prove” you have the ability to do this. In many ways, you’re in a better position than people interviewing for more permanent jobs because you’ll be able to prove you can do the job while they can only say they can.

Step 3: Let your staffing recruiter as well as your assignment manager know you’re interested in being hired at the company someday.

Ask for a meeting and tell your manager at work that you’d like to work at his or her company should an opening occur.

At pretty much the same time – or even before – let your recruiter/manager at the staffing company know, as well.

Never worry: if the client wants to hire you, the staffing company will not stop it. It may be delayed a bit but if the client company wants to bring you on to its payroll, the staffing company will be pleased. Truly.

One thing to look out for: a client manager who offers you a full-time position and asks you to not tell the staffing company. This is going against the contract the two businesses have with each other. The manager you’re working with on assignment knows this; he or she basically is knowingly breaking the contract.

Don’t be surprised if the manager you work with at the assignment asks you to submit a resume and fill out an application. This pretty much is par for the course.

Also, you should look at the company’s internal job opportunities because many companies allow temporary specialists to apply before the jobs are opened to the general public. Let both your staffing manager as well as the assignment manager know that you’re applying for one or more positions.

Check out temp-to-hire assignments

If you’re looking for full-time work, check out the job opportunities at Helpmates. You’ll see temporary assignments, direct-hire opportunities and other assignments known as temp-to-hire.

These are positions that clients ask us to fill because they are looking to bring someone on in a temporary capacity in the hopes the company will want to bring the person on to their payroll in about three months or so – and that the specialist on assignment also will want to do so.

If any temporary, temp-to-hire or direct-hire assignments appeal to you as you search, follow the application instructions or contact the Helpmates branch office nearest you for more information.

When It’s Raining Job Candidates

Before the pandemic struck, employers were struggling to find people to fill open positions. But the pandemic has changed that in many respects. There were almost seven million jobs available in October (latest figures available), but in November (latest figures available) nearly 20 million people were getting some sort of unemployment benefits.

Gardena recruiters

What this leads to is more people applying for openings, and companies faced with more candidates to screen. Moreover, many people are simply sending in applications for anything that looks remotely like something they might be qualified for. This causes a lot of headaches for recruiters and hiring managers and results in hiring processes taking longer than they should.

So, in the midst of this glut that is clogging the hiring pipeline, what can companies do to improve the process and improve their hires? The answer is to provide clarity and openness – about the requirements for the job, the duties, the pay, the application, and the hiring process itself.

  1. Job Requirements

When posting job ads, most companies frame job requirements in terms of education and experience, which actually may have little to do with the actual skills needed for the work. Moreover, requirements are often expressed in abstract terms whose meanings may be clear to the hiring manager, but no one else.

Rather, the job requirements should focus on the skills, knowledge and abilities the person actually needs to do the work and how these skills will be measured.

  1. Job Duties

Too often this is a general description filled with language that sounds more at home in a courtroom than a job ad. Companies need to show what the job is really like. To do this, they should include things such as photos, videos or a podcast to describe it. Candidates need to see all aspects of the job, both the good and not so good parts.

  1. Salary

There is no reason to keep salary information hidden on the assumption it will strengthen the company’s negotiating position. This is not a useful approach. Nor is discounting candidates who ask about salary early in the process.

Again, companies need to be open about salary, including a pay range in the job posting.

  1. Application

Too often the application is long and detailed, prompting many qualified candidates to simply look elsewhere. Sometimes companies ask candidates to upload a resume into an applicant tracking system and submit an application, which is a recipe for candidate frustration.

Applications should be as easy as possible to complete. You need to consider what information you really need at this initial stage of the process. Do you really need a Social Security number and references at this point? The simpler the application, the more likely the candidate is to complete it.

  1. The Hiring Process

The hiring process at many companies is often rather mysterious. Not many understand how it works, why it is set up the way it is, or how long it should take.

Companies need to be transparent about the hiring process. In fact, some recruiters advocate putting it online, offering regular email updates as to where things stand. Moreover, hiring managers need to be accountable for evaluating candidates according to established criteria. They should not be allowed to kick the can down the road, to hold candidates in limbo. They need to review resumes and applications with an eye toward skills and not simply education and experience.

Changing these things will make the whole process less of a numbers gambit, but rather an effort focused on finding someone who can do the job and add value to the company.

Helpmates can help you sort through “too many” job applicants so that you interview just the top candidates. Contact the recruiters at the Helpmates branch nearest you to learn more.

Looking into Our Crystal Ball: Predicting the Future of Remote Work Post-Pandemic

Waaay back (in late 2019), about 7 million of us worked remotely full-time, which was about 3.2 percent of the entire workforce. In addition, about 43 percent of us worked at home at least part time.

Gardena staffing

Now, during the pandemic? Gallup in mid-March began polling people regarding working from home and reported that 39 percent of those polled said their employer offered “flex time or remote work options.” That number increased to 57 percent in polling conducted between March 30 and April 2. We wouldn’t be surprised if it’s more, now (late July, when we wrote this post).

What does the future hold? Our guess is that remote work is here to stay!

Not everyone can work from home, of course, but for those who can, it’s looking more and more as if they will want to continue doing so, at least one or two days a week. This particularly could be the case if the COVID-19 crisis remains with us for the remainder of the year and into early next. That is, the longer people get to work remotely, the more they’ll want to.

Most remote workers LOVE to work at home!

The Gallup research article linked to above mentioned that 59 percent of people polled who are working from home because of the pandemic said they’d prefer to do so as often as possible once health restrictions are lifted.

In fact, folks working from home like it so much that they told pollsters that they’d be willing to quit their current employer to find another remote position if their current company did away with remote work.

Remote workers ARE more productive

A recent survey conducted by CoSo Cloud found that 77 percent of remote workers said their productivity grew when they started working from home. (Fifty-two percent also said they were less likely to take time off.)

Some might be thinking: “Well, of course the employees will say they’re more productive! But are they really!?” Yes they are. Data are showing a 47 percent increase in employee productivity this year.

The future isn’t here yet and therefore nothing is absolutely certain…

…but it appears as if more of those employees who can work from home, will.

Gartner, for example, believes that about 48 percent of employees are “likely” to work remotely at least part-time post-pandemic, up from 30 percent before COVID-19 turned the world upside down and shook it vigorously.

Not everyone agrees, of course: other experts believe workers will return to the office. Working from home can be very lonely; therefore, according to the research firm Gensler, “only 12 percent of people want to continue to work from home full-time after the pandemic  subsides.” In addition, Gensler reports that of those who would like to work from home at least some of the time, that some of the time amounts to no more than two or three days per week. Possibly less.

Our prediction?

We believe a good number of people will continue to want to work from home full time. Whether this number is more than those who prefer to work in an office full-time will depend on how well the physical office meets their needs as well as their child care requirements and arrangements.

Still, we believe a lot more workers than before the pandemic will want at least the option to work remotely full- or part time. Savvy employers will understand that this option could well become a required employee benefit if they want to attract top talent – and what employer doesn’t want to do so?

If you’d like to offer remote work to potential employees who normally didn’t work remotely before the COVID-19 crisis (call center workers or customer service representatives, for example), contact Helpmates. We recently helped two of our call center clients move our specialists to full remote work, and we can do the same for you.

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