A Guide To Using Temp Agencies via New To HR

A Guide To Using Temp Agencies

Temps can be a huge asset to any firm, providing organisations with the support they need to trade and grow without having to make a long term hiring commitment. 

Paid by the hour, temporary employees are employed through a temp agency that  also handles holiday pay, health insurance, pensions and national insurance contributions. 

With so many options out there, understanding how to use temp agencies

 – and the benefits of hiring temp staff – will help you choose the right agency for your needs.

When might you need a temp?

There are lots of situations where hiring temps can be the best route to take.

One example is if you’re launching a new project and need additional staff quickly. Another is if you’re opening up a new role but want to trial it before making it permanent. 

Or it could be that your HR department is at full capacity and doesn’t have the time to source candidates to fill temporary support roles and solve HR issues.

Turning to a temp agency in these situations can be hugely beneficial. 

By leveraging the services of a good agency, you can upsize and downsize at short notice and source talent at speed without having to spend weeks advertising roles. 

How do temp agencies work?

Good temp agencies work closely with clients to match them with the right candidates.

The first step is to give your temp staffing agency details of the role you want to fill. Equipped with the right information, the agency will look at the candidates in their network and provide you with a few suitable options to choose from. 

Agency workers are employed on the temp agency’s payroll, so you don’t need to handle things like holiday pay or national insurance contributions. 

What kind of temp jobs are available at agencies?

Although temporary positions are available for a range of job types, most temp agencies focus on hiring for business support and administrative roles, including the following:

Temp receptionists

Receptionists are often the first point of contact a client, supplier or potential employee will have with your company, so sourcing the right candidate is key. 

Temp receptionists are paid hourly, so hiring one could benefit you if you already have a part-time receptionist in place but you need additional cover, for instance. 

Temp PAs and EAs

Personal assistants and executive assistants are roles that are designed to alleviate the more administrative aspects of your own workload, or the workloads of senior members of staff in your organisation. 

From diary management to managing expenses, good temps will hit the ground running on day one and adapt to your business processes with ease. That said, you will be expected to provide them with instructions and support. 

Temp office managers

If your office manager is on leave or you’ve opened a new location, recruiting people on a temp basis could be the way forward. Every business owner knows that office managers are the linchpin of an organisation, helping the office to run smoothly. 

You can always offer a full time permanent position to your temp down the line. 

5 benefits of hiring temp staff
  • Flexibility – you can hire temps for short term cover, or even hourly, and cancel their booking if you no longer require their services.
  • Skills – experienced temps have worked in a wide range of organisations so are skilled at adapting to different processes and software systems.
  • Speed – hiring through a temp agency is often faster than doing it yourself because agencies have a range of qualified temps on their books, ready to start. 
  • Trust – a good temp agency will know their pool of talent, interviewing candidates looking for temporary work and assessing their skills.
  • Business continuity – you can leverage the expertise and services of your temp agency year after year, and turn to them when you experience staff shortages.  

How to find the right agency 

It’s easy to find temp agencies that will help you with the hiring process. You can try search engines or ask your existing network for recommendations. 

However, to really find the right temp recruitment agency for your business, you should start by defining your needs. Here are some useful prompts if you’re thinking about using an employment agency:

  • How much does the agency charge for their services? (Agencies may charge differently.)
  • Do they specialise in the roles you’re looking to fill?
  • How ‘bespoke’ is their service; will you have a main point of contact?

About the author:

Auria Heanley is co-founder of Oriel Partners, a boutique PA and administrative recruitment consultancy based in Central London. She is extremely passionate about providing the highest quality of service to both clients and candidates. Oriel Partners’ clients range from global multinationals to small boutique firms, all requiring the same personal service and high calibre support.

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