Temporary and contract employees play a big role in the American workforce. American staffing companies hire more than 15 million temporary and contract workers each year, according to American Staffing Association. With such a dominant presence in the workforce, this segment of workers can’t be overlooked. To engage temporary talent and grow your candidate pool in your staffing agency software, you should start at the very beginning of the job application process.
Be more responsive during the job search and application process
Getting off on the right foot with temporary workers begins with being transparent and responsive. According to the American Staffing Association, job seekers want to hear that the search process will be “transparent and at least somewhat human”. They say they’re tired of submitting resumes and then never hearing back from anyone.
While it’d be ideal to call or send emails to each candidate, we know that’s not doable for many recruiters. When possible, make an effort to return calls and write personalized e-mails—but for times when your plate is full, setting up automated responses through your staffing agency’s applicant tracking system could be a big help.
This feature provides you with an opportunity to let applicants know that you’ve received their application and that it will be reviewed. You can also share what the next steps are, and when interviews will be taking place. Job seekers want to know their application was received and appreciated, which isn’t implied when they hear nothing at all.
Call them “Temporary Workers” or “Contract Employees”
According to the New Language of Staffing handbook by ASA, these are the two terms these employees prefer most. From the perspective of temporary workers, “seasonal labor” gives an impression that the person is disposable, while “contingent” sounds like their pay is dependent on their job performance. This research reveals that the way you describe roles matters to job seekers, so be more conscious about how you communicate in job descriptions and conversations.
Express the chance of a permanent position (if there is one)
If there’s a possibility for the temporary role to become permanent in the future, let your candidate know. Statistics from ASA reveal that 49% of staffing employees say working temporary jobs is a way for them to get a permanent role. However, we must note that not all temporary workers are looking for a permanent position.
Some enjoy being able to work various assignments for different companies, and others value having a flexible work schedule. In fact, ASA’s research shows that one in five of employees say scheduling flexibility is a key reason for choosing temporary and contract work. To better understand your employee’s goals and circumstances, ask them questions related to their work preferences:
- Are they interested in a permanent role at the company?
- Do they like working different roles in a variety of industries?
- Do they value flexibility and having more autonomy over their hours?
These are all questions you can ask during an interview or follow-up phone calls. Keep a record of this important information in your staffing agency’s software so that you can refer to it when you need to place the employee in their next assignment.
Welcome them into the company
To instill a better sense of community and belonging, companies should make a bigger effort to create a welcoming workplace for all employees. A common sentiment for temporary employees is that they sometimes feel excluded from corporate communications and events. Bring up these points and suggest some ideas on how to navigate this with your client. These are just a few ways to help the employee adjust to their workplace and team:
- Provide training or support when needed
- Include them in staff meetings or events
- Invite them to lunch or happy hour
- Ask them for their ideas or expertise on various projects
Unhappy temporary workers may feel inclined to quit or hold negative feelings towards the company. Fully integrating them into the workplace can make all the difference in their output and overall experience.
Temporary and permanent staff want to feel respected
Temporary workers aren’t any different from permanent staff—they want to feel valued and respected by their peers and managers. If maintaining a strong and beneficial relationship with temporary workers matters to you, consider giving these strategies a try.
Are you looking for a staffing agency software that’ll help you grow and engage your talent pool? Contact us today.