It can be a major obstacle sifting through resumes when you’re trying to find the right employees who would be a good fit for your company, and if that employment is meant to be temporary, it’s all the more exasperating. That’s why many companies are turning to staff agencies to help them find suitable workers to fill temporary positions that have become available for whatever reason.
Since the staffing agency has already done most of the legwork in finding good employees, they offer candidates to a client company when the need arises. When you decide to work with a staffing agency to fill employment needs, there are a few things you should be aware of to avoid choosing the wrong agency for your company.
What Is a Staffing Agency?
First of all, what exactly is a staffing agency? A staffing agency — also known as a search, recruiting or staffing firm or service — is an organization that matches companies and job candidates. This kind of arrangement is generally temporarily, such as when a client company requires extra help during the holiday season, or when it is known that several key employees will be on vacation or away from work for a known period of time.
Temporary employees are a good match for these kinds of situations, and can provide the needed skills until a more normal work situation is back in effect at the client company. There are occasions where temporary employees from staffing agencies have impressed client companies significantly and have been hired away from the staffing agency, but this is not normally how the arrangement works.
Finding the Right Staffing Agency
When you’re trying to choose a staffing agency from among a whole list of candidates, you should give priority to those agencies which are known for having solid business practices. That means that they will take pride in the employees they provide to client companies and that those employees are properly credentialed and have been reference checked by the agency.
Any agency you’re considering should also carry the appropriate insurance, such as general liability, and they should also have Workmen’s Compensation insurance. Once you get beyond this preliminary qualification, you should then determine whether or not a candidate company can bring true value to your organization, and whether they are prepared to work as a partner with you, rather than treating you as just another client.
It’s also a good idea to check online reviews of any staffing agency you’re considering because you can learn an awful lot about an organization from clients who have already availed themselves of the organization’s services. Many online reviews will provide details that might be important to you in evaluating how useful an agency might be to your company. Ideally, you might want to try and find a staffing agency that specializes in working with employees in your specific industry, so that you can be sure they have the right kind of employees for your business.
Convey Your Needs Clearly
Keep in mind that you have to do your part to make a working relationship successful with any staffing agency you might choose. That means you’ll need to clearly communicate what your needs are for any open positions. You should also express to the agency what kind of person you’re looking for to fill the open role, and what you expect of that person on the job.
In addition to describing the basic responsibilities that any new employee would have, as well as the skillset necessary to fulfill the role, you should describe a little bit about your company to the new employee. This means you should clearly relate any specific policies you have regarding dress code, working hours, official breaks during the day, security policies, and other requirements that you ask of your employees.
This is a good idea because you don’t want to surprise any incoming employees with policies and requirements that they may not be able to live up to. It will also give them some idea of your corporate culture, and what it will take to be successful in the environment provided by your business. Remember that it’s not a one-way street when you’re trying to find employees through a staffing agency.
They will definitely do their part in finding appropriate candidates, but you have to do your part as well so that you don’t set up an employee for failure by keeping them in the dark about your company. This kind of arrangement always works best when both sides are open and honest with each other, and when there are no surprises that are sprung on incoming employees.
Check Out the Legal Details
For some positions that you have to fill with your company, there may be some legal details that accompany the transaction, for instance, payroll taxes and worker classification. One thing you should be aware of is that when hiring to fill temporary roles, the staffing agency is still the official employer of that worker, so you need to be sure that any workers you accept are legitimate employees of the staffing agency rather than independent contractors.
It might also be worth your while to establish a dual indemnification agreement in any contract you arrange with a staffing agency so that both parties can be protected from any possible mishaps or issues that may arise.
Maintain Good Relations
Having found a staffing agency that you like working with, and which provides value to your organization, it would definitely be worth your while to maintain good ongoing relations with that company. Chances are you will require their services again in the future, and then you’ll know exactly where to turn when you need to fill temporary positions.
This will eliminate a lot of searching and interviewing in the future, and you should be able to quickly fill any open positions by using recommended employees from your preferred staffing agency.