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A Temp Job Agency Can Help You Land a Permanent Job

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Don't be fooled by the “temp” in the title; a temp job agency can be a great resource for landing a long-term or even permanent position.

Get Your Resume Together

No matter what position you're applying for, you should have your resume on deck and ready to go. Make sure it's saved in an electronic format so you can send it to any temp job agency online. The job agency, in turn, will upload the resume to their system database.

You may also want to have some printed copies of your resume on hand, but these days it's no longer necessary to print them on fancy paper.

Choose a Reputable Temp Job Agency

If you need suggestions, ask your friends, family, and co-workers for referrals. If you happen to know people who work in Human Resources, ask them to recommend a temp job agency. You can probably get away with using two or three agencies at a time, but you should avoid signing up with too many. Staffing agencies often compete with one another to fill positions at the same company, and it might hurt your credibility if several recruiters try to submit you for the same job.

Schedule an Interview with the Job Agency

Call the temp job agency and request an in-person interview with a recruiter or staffing specialist. Make sure you dress appropriately and conduct yourself professionally, as you're trying to convince the recruiter that you are capable of presenting yourself (and the job agency) in a good light. You'll probably be asked to take some skill tests, especially if you're interested in jobs that use computer skills. Brush up on your applications and software, as well as your typing and 10-key skills. The better your test results, the better your chances of getting placed.

Know How Much You Expect to Make

During the interview, make sure you let the recruiter know what your salary expectations are, and be prepared to give a “bottom line” hourly rate. If you give the recruiter a range to work with, you'll increase your job opportunities. For example, if you give a range of $25-30 per hour, a good recruiter is going to try and get you placed at the high end of the scale (because he or she will make a higher commission). However, you'll also be considered for short-term assignments at the lower end of your range.

Find Out About Benefits

A lot of staffing agencies offer vacation time, health insurance, and even retirement plans to their employees. In addition, some states will give you the option of collecting unemployment insurance if you're working as a temp employee and your assignment ends. Check with your temp job agency to find out which benefits are available to you.

Be Prepared for Long-Term Assignments

Over the last few years, more and more employers have started using temp placement agencies to fill the positions in their companies. Rather than doing the hiring themselves, these companies prefer to employ long-term contractors (6 months or more) and temp-to-hire employees (work for 60-90 days before being offered a permanent position). If you're amenable to these assignments, make sure your staffing specialist knows this. But be honest! If your temp job agency commits you to a long-term assignment and you back out before it's complete, you may find yourself blacklisted by that job agency.

Stay in Contact with Your Temp Job Agency

Once you've signed up with a job agency or two, make sure you check in at least once a week to let them know that you're available. Creating and maintaining a good rapport with your temp job agency can create a long, beneficial relationship for you both!

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