What is a Temp Agency?

Temp agencies provide both temporary workers and companies of all sizes an option to deviate from traditional, in-house hiring and employment practices.

Temporary agencies are employment agencies that find employees to fill temporary jobs. For example, temps are often hired to work during seasonal increases in business, during tax season, during harvest seasons, or to cover vacations or illnesses. Temp agencies often also help to place professional consultants in short-term assignments.

Many temporary agencies have expanded their role in the employment sector to fill "temp to perm" positions where the position starts out as a temporary job but could become permanent if the employer decides to hire the candidate.

Temporary staffing agencies (like, for example, Spherion, which finds temp work for people in the office / administrative, light industrial, non-clinical medical, and customer service sectors) may place job candidates on retainer where they assign them to temp jobs as these arise. The staffing agency is the employee’s official “employer” who issues the paycheck.

They may also provide benefits like health insurance, child care allowances, or vacation pay. If a temp job turns into a permanent position, then the relationship with the staffing agency ends and they are paid directly by their new employer.

What Do Temp Agencies Do for Their Clients?

The main objective of temp agencies is to match qualified candidates with clients looking to fill temporary, non-employee positions. Traditionally speaking, these specialized job agencies were formed in order to provide large businesses with a large volume of talent, but many have evolved to include temp-to-hire and, in some cases, full-time position placements.

In addition to placement, background checks, drug testing, reference screening, and skills training are conducted by temp agencies, particularly the larger, more all-inclusive firms.

What Temp Agencies Do for Their Workers?

The temp agency employment model has long been considered a go-to for all categories of workers, including flexible, part-time, seasonal, and temp-to-hire contractors. Generally, job seekers will contact the temp agency first, although some highly-skilled candidates may be recruited for specific projects.

Workers are entered into the temp agency’s database and are contacted whenever a position opens up that matches their skill set, availability, and location. These jobs may last as little as one work day, or may turn into a temp-to-hire position. Although the temp will usually report to work at the contracting company, they will still be paid by the agency.

Pro-tip: Workers should never pay their agency any fees or percentages up front. All temp and employment agencies should offer cost-free job placement to candidates.

The Cost of Temp Agencies for Clients

Temp agencies rely on their company clients to gain revenue. These deals vary depending on the mitigating terms of the contract; some reflect fixed-fee, hourly fee, or value-based pricing models.

The temp agency makes its money through rate markups, or the additional cost on top of the worker’s hourly wage that covers the agency’s costs and any benefits being provided to the temp worker – and in some cases, markups can be as much as 100% or more. For instance, at a 50% markup, the temp agency will charge the client $45 per hour for a worker that they’re paying a rate of $30 per hour.

In the case of temp-to-hire positions in which the client wants the option to bring on the temporary worker full-time, a contract buy-out would be negotiated. Note that temp-to-hire positions aren’t guaranteed employment; they simply give the company the option to transition a temporary worker to a full-time role after the temporary work period ends.

The upside for temps is, of course, the fact that the agency does the leg-work in terms of placement and negotiation.

What Kind of Jobs do Temp Agencies Offer?

Temp agencies hire workers from all kinds of backgrounds – from tech to manufacturing, food service, administrative work, and beyond – to meet the demand for project-based or short-term talent as companies seek a more dynamic workforce.

What Are Some of the Cons of working with a Temp Agency?

There’s a downside to everything, and that includes temping:

-You may feel isolated

-You may be treated like a second-class citizen on the job

-There is a lack of certainty about income

-You may not have health insurance, a pension plan, or paid vacations

There aren’t very many disadvantages to temping – but if you like the security of a regular job and the camaraderie of a consistent circle of coworkers, you may find temping to be a disappointment.

Where do I find a Temp Agency Near Me?

Recruitsy is a crowd-sourced rating a review platform built to connect workers with staffing and temp agencies near you. To get a jump start on finding temp agencies near you, simply browse this page to find the best temp agencies in a city near you.

Temp Agencies Near You