So far, so good. You are ready to do temp and contract placements! How do you do it? This article will outline some simple steps needed for you to get this done so you can enjoy the benefits of temp and contract placements. These steps include the following: developing your marketing strategy, getting set up in advance with a back-office provider, screening your applicants, and making those first few placements! The rest is easy. After you have made a few placements and your clients realize the benefits, you can enjoy an increasing stream of business.

You need a marketing strategy to educate your clients about temp and contract placements. This strategy should spell out what benefits the client can expect to accrue, what responsibilities you as the recruiter will have, and what is the role of the back-office provider. Temp and contract placements provide your clients with options to solve their labor needs. There may be opportunities for idle workers to be put back on the job. With so many people out of work, this creates a huge source of potential placements, both direct-hire and contract. Your marketing effort should point out that there are a lot of people who now prefer working remotely and don’t want to go back to an office environment, regardless of their employers’ requests to return. You as a recruiter have a unique opportunity to match up these workers with new remote-friendly employers. Stay alert to these opportunities and help your clients understand how they may benefit.

Temp and contract hires can fill an employer’s immediate need until direct hires are found and may ultimately result in a direct hire if the candidate works out for the long term. You can earn a conversion fee if the temporary employee becomes a direct hire. In the meantime, you earn an income stream while they are on the contract assignment.

Be sure to make your clients aware of the temp and contract option as a means of getting people working quickly with minimum long-term risk. Contract placements can reduce overall labor costs and benefits burden, minimize the risk of maintaining direct hire staff, and provide the labor to move the client’s projects forward. All parties can profit from this: the employee is working, the client’s labor needs are served, and you are receiving income.

Key to your marketing effort is staying in close touch with your clients and ensuring that they understand that you are here to help them with their labor needs. Ask your back-office provider for a summary of the advantages to contract placements so you will have your talking points handy! Keeping communications open is vitally important. Pick up the phone and touch base with each of your clients. Keep your name in front of your clients so that they think of you as being on their team and vitally interested in their well-being. If you don’t call them, you may lose out to your competitors who do call. Remember that turmoil in the labor market can easily translate into the upset of many long-standing recruiter/client relationships. Get in front of this and take action to maintain your standing with your clients.

Get set up in advance with a back-office provider so that you are ready to fill a contract position as soon as the need arises. Once you have made a placement, your back-office provider will take up the burden in many ways. They will collect the employee’s time, get it approved, and make sure the employee is paid on time. The back-office provider’s payroll responsibilities include withholding taxes, child support payments, state and federal unemployment, matching employer taxes, wage garnishments, making payroll tax deposits, and issuing W-2’s after the year’s end. Funding of payroll, of course, can be included, along with invoicing of your client company. The back-office provider will monitor accounts receivable and aging of invoices, follow up on missed or skipped invoices, and make calls to expedite collections. They will provide the needed state and federal unemployment coverage for the employee, thus protecting your inhouse unemployment rating. Finally, the back-office provider will provide workers’ comp (WC) for the employee, making sure the WC policy covers the workers’ comp class code and job description. You can be ready to make placements in any state by partnering with a back-office provider. This flexibility will enhance your utility to your clients and enable you to match up candidates and positions regardless of their location. Partnering with a back-office provider can relieve you of the administrative details of a contract placement so that you can focus on what you do best: find the right candidate for the job!

Screen your applicants to determine if they would be interested in a contract position. Some former full-time workers who are now encouraged or forced to work at home may well develop a preference for the more flexible lifestyle they can enjoy out of the office. They may find themselves back in the candidate pool and looking for assignments that ensure them the desired flexible work arrangements. It is becoming commonplace to see clients whose employees are remarkably diverse geographically. Contract workers likely will be hired back sooner than direct hires. This is due to companies being unsure about the future: concern about another wave of COVID-19 cases may lead to further mandated shutdowns. Other workers, tired of the burdens and inconveniences of social distancing imposed in high population-density cities may opt to pack up and join the exodus to the suburbs, smaller towns, or even rural locations. These folks present another recruiting opportunity when they rejoin the labor market and are very easily handled via contract placements. Finding a short-term labor solution for your client will enable them to continue their operations unimpeded at minimum risk.

Finding the optimal direct hire often takes significant time. Temp and contract placements can fill the void and may even result in a good fit for a direct hire. A beneficial side-effect of the vetting process for direct hires is that you will develop an inventory of potential temp or contract candidates. Keep these candidates in mind and propose them when appropriate as surrogates or provisional workers.

Partner with a back-office provider to give you the flexibility of responding immediately to your client’s needs and relieve you of the headaches of handling temp and contract placements. Back-office providers keep up with the ever-changing rules and regulations issued by the federal, state, and local jurisdictions. These services can be provided immediately if you are set up in advance. You can put your marketing strategy to work if you know HOW TO START.


Posted in

NAPS Harold B. Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award Winner