How Do Temp Agencies Work?

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Working With Employers

Temporary agencies seek out companies and businesses that are hiring workers on a temporary or full-time basis. A temporary agency provides a finding or head hunting service to employers. The benefit of this service is that the employer does not have to hire personnel to screen or interview candidates or double check that an employee has the requisite training and skills necessary to do the job.

Finding Employees

Temp agencies find employees by placing advertisements in newspapers and magazines as well attending job fairs. A temporary agency may ask potential employees to take many different tests. These can include tests measuring an applicant’s computer skill as well as writing and math abilities. A temporary agency will verify an applicant’s educational background and check references as well as conduct an interview to gauge the employee’s attitude and general behavior.

In return for conducting this service the temporary agency is compensated either by a flat fee up front or by an hourly fee. The hourly fee is paid to the temporary agency on top of the worker’s wages.

A temporary employment agency may specialize in hiring workers for certain fields such as nursing, law or food service.

Candidate Pools

Many temporary agencies have a core group of reliable employees they can offer employers for projects. These employees have often built up a track record of reliable employment with the agency in the past indicating that they can meet an employer’s needs. An employer may have the agency choose a specific candidate to hire for the job. They also may choose to interview these prescreened candidates themselves in-house and then decide which one to hire.

Benefits to Workers

Workers benefit from working for temporary agencies in several ways. A temporary agency may offer immediate employment as well as flexible hours. Temporary work may pay a higher hourly salary than the worker can otherwise earn. This can be an ideal situation for a worker who has benefits from other sources such as a spouse. An employee may want to investigate a career before committing to it. Often temporary employment can turn into permanent employment as the worker proves herself value to the company. An employee may be in an area for only a short time frame and unable to commit to work for a longer period.