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Hiring a Temp: What to Look For

Hiring a Temp: What to Look For

You know that contingency and temporary staffing can help you grow your business while cutting costs and reducing the risk associated with hiring. But now that you’re ready to move forward and starting recruiting temporary employees, what kinds of credentials and personal traits should you search for? What qualities and qualifications suggest a successful match for your needs and your culture? Here are a few ways to sort the best temp employees from those who are just okay.

Ask Questions about the Candidate’s Plans

Showing interest in the candidate’s plans and intentions can serve two purposes: It can you determine how well your short and long term goals line up. And it can also help you gain the candidate’s respect by demonstrating that you’re looking for a mutually profitable match, not just a one-sided, exploitative relationship. Both of you need to be happy in order to make this pairing work, so don’t just fire off self-serving questions like you’re giving an oral exam. Listen as much as you talk.

Look for Flexibility

Temporary work arrangements are, by nature, not meant to last forever. You don’t know how long you’ll need her services, and at the same time, you’ll probably want the option of hiring her full time if you get to know her and decide that you like her work. This agreement is open-ended, and if she has a high tolerance for flexibility and uncertainty, that’s a good sign.

Look for Focused Skill Sets

If you need an IT specialist to help you implement a complex new software platform that may take between three months and one year to complete, you don’t need a candidate who excels in every single area of human endeavor. You just need a skilled, experienced specialist. Don’t get off track by talking about her high school GPA or her marathon times, and don’t be too easily impressed by her science fair award or her skiing championship. Yes, she’s hardworking, friendly, and a great citizen, but those things matter more when you’re evaluating permanent employees.

Look for Strong Recommendations

Factor the opinions of others into your decision. Trust an experienced staffing agency (like Techneeds) to conduct a pre-screening before you meet with the candidate, and don’t complete the hiring process until you’ve contacted at least one reference or former employer.

For more on how to find candidates with the right skill sets and the perfect balance between flexibility and reliability, reach out to New England’s top staffing agencyTechneeds.