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Temp jobs - Who bennefits most? The employer or employee

Updated on April 20, 2009

How you benefit from being a temp

There are many advantages for the employee in temporary jobs found through agencies. You know someone else is looking for a job for you, even when you're still sleeping in bed. If it's a job you don't like, you know the end date is in sight. Every few weeks or months you get a vacation.

Other benefits include being introduced to a number of different companies, and also exposure to a number of different computer systems - if you're like me and work in accounting - or other key resume skills. You also meet many more people, and begin to quickly read into the dynamics of an office. If you've seen the TV show The Office, it's hard not to label your new co-workers with characters from the show.

Temp jobs often start immediately.  This can be handy for those who are currently unemployed, especially since many permanent jobs are being recruited for long before the start date.

Also, some temporary jobs can turn into a permanent job. This gives both you and the employer a chance to feel things out before making any commitment to a permanent job. If you don't think it's the right job for you, as a temp you can quit and not have it taint your resume for leaving early after being hired, as it was a temp job after all.

Perhaps this video can best be appreciated by other temps

Is it to the employers advantage?

Hiring temps works out well to employers as well. They can let the boring, mundane tasks such as filing, shredding, and data entry pile up, and bring in a temp as needed to clear things up.  There is very little notice required for letting a temp go, and if they don't like someone, it's far easier to call the agency and request a new temp, then to fire and re-hire a new employee.

However, employers do pay a premium to the agencies for temps.  Not only are they paying for the temporaries hours, but also often an extra 50% to the agency itself.  It's always disapointing when you see an invoice for your own work from the agency (which I often do as I'm in accounting), and see what rate your employer is paying the agency for you, and comparing it to your actual salary.

Where do the agencies fit in?

The agencies find the jobs, interview potential employees, and send them on their way to their new jobs. In a city with a large job market, the agencies must be the winners in this scenario.

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In conclusion...

If you want security, benefits, or tend to live from paycheque to paycheque, then a temp job is not for you. Though if unemployed, it's a perfect way to fill in the space between permanent jobs.

For myself, temporary jobs have allowed me to travel and live in cities for short periods of time, while still working in accounting. However, as I'm in the UK at the moment where the recession has hit quite hard, I've joined HubPages until my next temporary position comes through. It fills the days, and gives you that faint glimmer of hope of earning a dollar or two.


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      issues veritas 9 years ago

      There are no real permanent jobs outside of the government and union jobs.