Day after day, I talk to exciting people who are looking for a new job or simply want to assess their own value on the job market. I often hear: "I'm only interested in a permanent position with the company as opposed to temporary employment through a recruitment agency."  In this blog, I'll explain how temporary work has developed and why there are situations in which temporary employment is the best solution.

The industry has changed

Just 10 years ago, there were recruitment agencies that paid temporary employees very little in order to line their own pockets. Meanwhile, others paid above-average wages to appear more attractive. At this time, there was still no collective bargaining agreement, hardly any controls and frequent abuses. Though there are still a few exceptions, these times are definitely over! Nowadays, there are so many reputable recruitment agencies, that exotic and dubious agencies have fallen by the wayside, and market-driven wages and fair conditions have been established for everyone.

Reasons for temporary work

First off, let's clarify a fundamental question: Why does temporary work even exist? The reasons are many: 

  • a temporary project
  • unexpectedly large orders in production
  • long absences due to illness or accident
  • further assistance necessary 

All these situations eventually come to an end and you are left without a job again. When applying for another job, you then have to explain why your last employment was so short. So I completely understand the concerns about such work.

Don't underestimate the potential

By choosing temporary work, you leave yourself plenty of room for changes that occur in life. At the same time, as a temporary employee, you get your "foot in the door" at the company. Once a project or large order has been completed, it is not uncommon for there to be another such project or order for which you will be needed. Sometimes, the person who has been absent because of illness or accident can no longer do the same work and has to be replaced permanently. Or you've done such a good job as a temporary employee that the company extends your temporary employment, or even offers you a permanent position!

No internal approval

At this juncture, I would like to mention two other important reasons that can lead to temporary work: It is often the case that companies do not immediately approve an additional permanent position or this process is too lengthy. However, they need practical support much quicker. For example, it might well be the case that there is a need for a specialist who can jump into action quickly but who will be employed on a temporary basis. As soon as the position is approved internally, the employment becomes permanent. That's why it can be a great opportunity to take a temporary position, especially in a large company. 

The Try-and-Hire Model

The second reason is the so-called Try-and-Hire model. This usually involves someone starting work on a temporary basis first at the company for three months via an agency, and then being offered a permanent position if the company is satisfied. In contrast to the case described above, the aim here is to convert the temporary employment relationship into a permanent position after three months.

In such cases, I also often get negative responses from job seekers such as, "It's too risky to give up a permanent position in order to start temporary work." I totally understand these concerns. However, on closer inspection, the differences between this model and immediate permanent employment are not all that great. Not unlike with Try-and-Hire, even with a direct permanent contract, there is a probationary period, and in most cases, this lasts three months. During the probationary period, an employment relationship can be terminated at short notice. It is often easier for companies to employ someone via an agency first and to prepare everything for a position during the first three months. I always give my candidates the following explanation: "A Try-and-Hire opportunity is like the company outsourcing their probationary period to an agency" In addition, with a Try-and-Hire opportunity, you have the opportunity to prove yourself at the company and to "prove your case" for a permanent position through good work. Without this model, you would not even get an opportunity in the first place because companies are much more reserved when it comes to permanent positions.

Be open, check the offer, and give it your best

The employment agency industry is large and diverse. It's worth taking a closer look and finding the right partner for your needs. At Randstad, we maintain excellent relationships with our clients, and we practice transparent and direct communication. I hope I have managed to convince you of the merits of a temporary opportunity, and to encourage you to take a closer look at what's being offered. Go the extra mile in your temporary position and show them what you've got!

Here's how a temporary job assignment

through Randstad works