As is the case with most high profile industries, an array of myths and misconceptions surround the temporary staffing industry. Typically, these arise from hearsay or a general lack of knowledge regarding the industry. Whatever the case, they have the potential to do harm by deterring potential candidates and sowing confusion among our clients.
With that said, here are some perennial myths surrounding the staffing industry that we’d like to clear up.
Staffing firms are dinosaurs and the industry as a whole is on its last leg
This one pops up a lot, quite often in casual conversation, at industry-specific gatherings and in the course of our duties. However, it couldn’t be further from the truth. The reality is, the staffing industry is currently bigger and more important than it has ever been throughout history. In the UK, in fact, there are now too many staffing firms to count. Literally. Central statistics offices no longer know exactly how many are in existence – only that there are an immense amount.
Staffing firms are only for manual and unskilled labour
This may have been true once. Like 50 years ago. But it hasn’t been the case for a long, long time. Today, staffing firms are responsible for sourcing and providing highly skilled professionals for highly skilled positions. In fact, the top fields for temporary staffing firms include programmers, cyber security experts, doctors, nurses, teachers, engineers and project managers.
The gig economy is rendering staffing firms redundant
Again, this myth demonstrates a very tenuous grasp of the modern economic landscape. Sure, the gig economy is a thing. And it is revolutionising our economy and the way we work. However, far from eliminating the need for staffing firms, it is making them more in demand than ever. Large firms often need individuals with specific skill sets for one off gigs. However, they don’t usually have the time nor resources to source these individuals themselves. For this reason, they turn to the staffing agencies and HR offices to get exactly who they need, on-demand, without all the extra unnecessary hoopla regarding hiring and on-boarding and contracts and so forth.
Moreover, the gig economy is creating and unprecedented demand for creative digital types. As these types are far less likely to be inclined to work permanent, long-term positions, it is far more likely to find them working with and through temporary labour and staffing agencies.
No one would want to take a temporary job
Actually, studies indicate that the overwhelming majority of young professionals entering the workforce would prefer to take a temporary position. At least at first. The reasons are varied: They don’t want to get nailed down to one job right away. They want to explore their options. Or test the waters. Or they just need something to hold them over until something else comes along. Or they would simply prefer to work only when they want. And not work when don’t want to.
Moreover, a number of major companies are no longer offering permanent positions straight away, instead requiring candidates to work temporary roles first in order to get a better feel for how well they will integrate and thrive within the company. In this way, temp jobs are becoming more necessary than ever.
Temp agencies don’t care about their workers
With the competition for skilled, qualified labour becoming ever more fierce, temporary staffing agencies more than ever are forced by the market to place a premium on their talent-relations departments. This means getting to know each temp personally, engaging them consistently through social media and in person, catering to their needs and concerns and personally intervening to resolve any issues that might arise.
It also means that staffing firms are increasingly adopting new technologies, such staffing software and scheduling apps, that make the candidate’s experience (and the client’s as well) as positive, enjoyable and hiccup-free as possible.