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Jobless Recovery Brings Temp-To-Hire Back into Fashion


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Temp-to-Hire has long been the preferred staffing method of choice among many of the more experienced hiring managers with whom we work. A few years ago, the tight labor market and difficulty finding quality Temp-to-Hire candidates caused the method to fall from use. Now, as we see the signs of a third jobless recovery, there has never been a better time to take advantage of this favored staffing strategy.


Try-Before-You-Buy Staffing

The Temp-to-Hire approach allows hiring managers to fill positions free of fees while simultaneously deferring a hiring commitment to the end of a predetermined evaluative period.

During this evaluation, managers can directly assess the candidates' skills, productivity and culture-fit in their actual work environment. It's like an extended working interview. Rather than relying on gut instinct, references or resumes, you're able to get a real sense of how a potential employee will fit into your actual job requirements.

At the end of the trial period, the hiring managers have the option to employ the candidate in a Direct-Hire capacity. However, unlike traditional Direct-Hire with its associated fees, with Temp-to-Hire the employer merely pays a standard temporary mark-up for the work performed during the trial period.

It truly is the best of all possible worlds allowing you to quickly and easily fill a productivity hole while delaying a hiring decision until you have more evidence to give you greater confidence in your choice. And, because there are no Direct-Hire fees, it's much easier to take advantage of the benefits of Direct-Hire staffing without running afoul of corporate cost-containment policies.

"Historically, hiring managers who staff using the Temp-to-Hire method often express their wish to adopt it as a primary hiring strategy," says AppleOne Vice President Marc Goldman. "However, when unemployment was low, not very many candidates were willing to do it."


Small Window of Opportunity

Now that the economy is regaining momentum and competition is beginning to stir, businesses must muster full productivity if they are to exploit nascent opportunities. Coincidentally, there is now a rare window of opportunity for hiring managers to choose from a massive database of formidable yet affordable talent.

Now that we are in the middle of a jobless recovery and the candidate pool is the most educated and skilled in U.S. history, Temp-to-Hire candidates are not only readily available, they also have a greater potential for becoming valuable company assets.

"Jobless recovery has marked the early stages of economic expansion twice before, and the present is no different," says Goldman. "Even as numbers indicate joblessness, smarter companies are taking their cue from previous jobless recoveries and they are taking advantage of this brief period when they can cost-effectively fortify their staff."

Understandably, many employers find that it is still difficult to hire with confidence given the current economic climate. However, Temp-to-Hire allows businesses to bridge the productivity gap and lock in those keeper candidates while shifting the hiring decision to a point when the economic picture is more clear.


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