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Busting Staffing Myths: What It’s Really Like to Work as a “Temp”

Posted by Scott Fiore on April 23, 2019

You’ve been out of work for a long time. The frustrating treadmill of applying to jobs and absorbing rejections has started to cut into your self-confidence. Meanwhile, the lack of a paycheck has simultaneously cut into your bank account.

Or, maybe you’ve toiled in the same dead-end, unfulfilling position longer than you care to remember. Your hopes for long-term career satisfaction have started to fade.

Either way, you can help your situation by teaming with a staffing firm. You’re reluctant, however, because of what you’ve heard about life as a temp.

You’ve heard working as a temp means submitting to a series of short-term, mind-numbing tedium, where you’ll draw the ire of your co-workers and constant mistreatment from your managers. A cross between a medieval serf and a court jester.

These are myths. A recruiter aims to put you in engaging, career-expanding placements, ones with dynamic co-workers and supportive bosses happy for the talents you bring to the table.

Here is the truth about four myths related to life as a temp:

You Only Get Mind-Numbing Work

People tend to view temp work like a glorified paid internship. Under this conception, you’ll spend your days making copies, brewing coffee or taking lunch orders. If you’re lucky, you might get shunted to a finger-cramping data entry project.

This isn’t the case. companies don’t bring in extra help, with the additional expense and increased headaches that entails, just to make busywork. They have an important project to complete or an open position they haven’t been able to fill on their own.

In short, coming into a new situation as a temp, expect to contribute to important operations.

Other Workers Treat You Badly

A key concern about becoming a temp worker stems from the perceived social hierarchy of the workplace. Skeptical potential temps worry they will instantly become the bottom of the totem pole, or they will be resented by the full-time workers as a potential threat to their salaries and benefits.

The basic function of a temporary worker is to lessen the workload for full-time employees. Bringing in additional help only happens when the regular staff finds itself inundated with more work than it can handle. Beyond not being viewed as a threat, chances are the full-timers will greet you as much-appreciated relief, the rescue brigade coming in to save the day.

Taking a Temp Job Means Never Getting a Full-Time Gig

Some people view a temp assignment as a kind of surrender; like they’ve given up on the prospect of ever working a full-time job again.

This isn’t true. Many assignments that start as nominally “temporary” can turn into full-time placements over time. Even if the assignment you’re on doesn’t have full-time potential, it doesn’t keep you from continuing to pursue a staff position somewhere else.

In the meantime, the temp gig will give you a paycheck and allow you the opportunity to build job experiences that will make you more attractive to future employers. These improve your chances of getting a full-time position in the long run.

Temp Jobs Are Always Short-Term, Sporadic Assignments

It’s true that some temp assignments can be very short. However, many placements are long term, or even indefinite. Moreover, you’ll know the length of the engagement going into the placement. You can choose whether it fits your career goals and your long-term schedule.

Ready For A New Opportunity?

Every temporary assignment represents a potential career-building opportunity. TriStarr can find the perfect placement for your situation. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in Job Search