Is Your Dream Candidate a Temp?

By Jered Haddad

Earlier this month, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that the unemployment rate continues to hold at 5 percent while payroll employment rose by 292,000 in December. Exciting news for our economy, but an indication to hiring managers that challenging times lie ahead.

By way of supply and demand, as unemployment rates decline, the availability of high quality candidates decreases. Competition becomes fierce, and quite simply, it can be a maddening experience to recruit the right people.

On a local level, the demand for good candidates mirrors these statistics and has drastically accelerated.

I have worked in the recruiting industry for two decades and weathered ups and downs associated with the U.S. economy. Hiring effective workers has always been a critical mission for companies that are thriving, and statistics show that hiring temps offer a viable solution in this type of hiring environment.

According to CareerBuilder’s job forecast, nearly half of U.S. employers plan to hire temporary or contract workers in 2016. I absolutely support this truth and advise you to try a temp contractor for the following reasons.

You’ll Reduce Your Burden & Risk. Temp agencies pay the employee and pay all federal, state and local taxes and contributions, unemployment insurance and worker’s compensation insurance. The agency handles all pre-employment checks and assumes all professional liability for the temps, including errors and omissions and certificates of liability insurance.

You Can Try Before You Buy. Hiring a temp allows you to evaluate a person’s work ethic and performance before adding them to your payroll. The best temps are usually between jobs, hungry for work and offer employers a way to try working together without the burden of a long-term commitment. If the temp brings value, then the employer can turn the temporary hire into a permanent one. If the relationship doesn’t progress, then there’s an easy out.

You Can Hire with Confidence. Experienced temps recognize the benefits of maintaining a rapport with their recruitment firms. These candidates stay in touch for years, and when he or she becomes unemployed, they immediately turn to their trusted recruiter. The best job seekers want to return to work quickly and seek immediate opportunities to keep their skills fresh while building upon experience. The result is a candidate who is eager to work and easily sourced from a trusted recruiting expert.

You’ll Save Time. When you work with a temp placement firm and communicate exactly what you need, you can avoid sifting through resumes of unqualified candidates. The staffing firm can send three resumes of qualified candidates available for immediate assignment, and in turn save you or your hiring manager a lot of time.

One fact remains: when unemployment is low, it becomes increasingly challenging to find qualified candidates. Temps offer a valuable option to fill positions quickly and connect with desirable job seekers. Whether you’re working with a trusted HR professional, hiring a recruitment firm or undertaking this challenge yourself, it is possible to uncover those dream candidates, just remember, they may exist (at least initially) as a temporary contractor.

Jered Haddad, vice president of Gateway Group Personnel, can be reached at