hen the economy is floundering, businesses have to become
creative to turn a profit. With personnel costs one of the biggest line items, it often
becomes the first target for reduction. A feasible solution is temporary
workers, which costs less than permanent staff, saves time and offers
flexibility. Effectively using temporary staff during tough economic
times can help a business run lean and do more with less. For one, using
temporary workers avoids the costs of insurance, healthcare, taxes and other
Temp workers can be added quickly, at a much lower cost, in
response to market demands, helping to smooth fluctuations in the workload. If
demand falls, the business is spared the expense of laying off full-time
workers, which can cost as much as a full year of payroll.
For the foodservice industry in particular, using temporary
workers can help even out the seasonal fluctuations as well as the ups and
downs experienced during a struggling economy. Temp workers let a business
respond quickly, so customers do not notice an interruption in service.
Some strategies to make the most of temporary workers
temporary workers as a buffer when revenue starts increasing, while
waiting for signs that the economy is improving enough to justify hiring
overtime by giving temporary workers the extra hours, whether that’s for a
special project or during peak workload times. Providing extra help during
busy times prevents burnout of full-time employees and helps prevent
- Use an
agency to provide temporary workers, which reduces the time and effort
spent advertising, interviewing and hiring staff. Temporary workers from
an agency have been pre-screened and tested, which means less training is
cash flow by using an agency, which is generally paid within 30 to 45
days, versus an employee who is paid every week or every two weeks.
Businesses can hold onto their cash longer, making for better cash flow.
temp workers during a hiring freeze to handle increased workload without
adding to the direct hire headcount.
temp workers for non-core functions to free up full-time employees for
more critical work.
critical vacancies with temp workers until it’s possible to recruit a
hiring temporary workers be as specific as you can about the
qualifications and job responsibilities. It makes no sense to hire someone
who isn’t qualified, especially since they are meant to fill an immediate
During an economic downturn, it’s especially important to
make the most of the temporary employee’s time and efforts. Some strategies to
ensure the highest productivity include:
a work site orientation including a thorough explanation of job duties, an
overview of basic information such as the location of the restroom,
breakroom and when breaks are scheduled.
the employee to someone who can answer questions.
treat temporary workers like they are different from full-time employees.
They should be shown the same respect and consideration given to all
define the temporary worker’s role and performance criteria.
in mind that temporary workers who are looking for a permanent job and
those who are interested in temporary employment long-term are more
willing to put extra effort into their job.
– Susan Reidy