Do you expect seasonal or similar short-term bursts of activity for your small business? Or perhaps you’re seeing the first tentative signs of what could well be the start of a long-term growth trend. Maybe there’s a single large task or project that needs to be done by a certain date, and your employees are already busy with other tasks.
These scenarios are typically good news for a small business. But they also have the potential of straining your labor resources beyond the breaking point. Even the most productive workers have their limits, and stressing them could well compromise their normal efficiency, not to mention your own.
Fortunately, there’s a proven human resources alternative that can provide the needed agility to meet any challenge, temporary workers.
“Temps” aren’t simply placeholders for other employees when they’re sick or on vacation. They’re highly skilled and talented individuals who prefer the variety and flexibility of temporary and contract employment to a full-time job.
According to the American Staffing Association (ASA), 12.9 million temporary and contract employees are hired by U.S. staffing firms over the course of a year. Nearly 80 percent of staffing employees work full time, virtually the same as the rest of the work force.
What’s more, these employees are continually staying abreast of the latest business related trends, tasks, and technologies. ASA reports that 90 percent of staffing companies provide free training to their temporary and contract employees. And 65 percent of those employees say they developed new or improved work skills through their assignments.
Temporary workers can also bring a fresh perspective to their assignments, drawing on what they’ve experienced in other settings, perhaps companies facing the same kinds of issues as yours.
The “Staffing Smarts” section of ASA’s website (www.americanstaffing.net) can help you locate temporary staffing firms in your area, some of which offer specialized help for specific industries. You’ll also find guidance on choosing a staffing firm, laws and regulations governing employer-temp relationships, and other valuable information.
Other leading, nationwide firms offering temporary staffing solutions for small businesses include Kelly Services (KellyServices.com), Manpower, Inc. (www.manpower.com), and Olsten Staffing Services (www.olsten.com).
To learn more about human resources issues facing your small business, contact Raleigh SCORE. We provide free, confidential business mentoring and training workshops to small business owners. To schedule a free appointment with our experienced counselors, go to http://raleigh.score.org, or call us at 919-856-4739.