I haven’t worked for a while. Should I consider temporary roles?

woman auditioning to get back into the job marketCheck Out Temp to Hire Opportunities If You’re Looking to Get Back into the Job Market!

I’m writing this blog especially for Northwest job seekers who might have been “out of the market” for a while and finding it a little tough to get back to work.  I am sharing some professional advice as to why Temp-to-Hire work opportunities are abundant right now and why an unemployed job seeker should check them out.

I’ve been in the staffing and recruiting business for over 25 years – long enough to understand staffing from both sides of the aisle – both the employers and the job seekers perspective.   One of the questions that always bubbles up from job seekers –  countless times and in all economic climates…”Why would I want to take a Temp-to-Hire job, when I want I want is to land somewhere permanently?”

Good question, right? 

Well, let me share that for someone getting back into the job market after a short or lengthy hiatus, one of those temp to hire job opportunities might be the ideal fit – just for you!

Here’s why now is the right time to take a second look at Temp-to-Hire opportunities when getting back into the job market…

During times like now, where the business community is struggling to find their financial footing after long periods of either out and out meltdown or for sure extended periods of uncertainty, employers use temporary / contract staffing as a way to staff their operations.  They do this for good reasons…they can ramp up or ramp down quickly, they can keep their feet in the water to ensure their recovery while avoiding the high costs associated with hiring direct and making long term commitments.  No employer wants to hire and then lay off.

While its true that when challenging times hit…temporary / contract staff are the first to go, the flip side of that coin when the economy starts to improve, temporary / contract workers are usually the first to be hired.  We think the time is right for clients to use more temp to hire staffing models and to hire more temps auditioning for full time roles. 

Why are Temp-to-Hire jobs great opportunities for Northwest job seekers?

#1 You get your foot in the door of a highly desired employer

….employers who,  under normal conditions, can be very difficult for candidates off the street to even get noticed, let alone hired.  In fact so many Northwest companies have embraced the Temp-to-Hire staffing model that for many roles inside these companies, the only way to get hired is to become a “temp first”.

#2 Experience the benefits of the “try before you buy” hiring model

Clearly employers have bought into the “try before you hire” recruiting model as not only a way to hedge their bets on the economic future, but also to  check out candidates “on the job” before offering them permanent employment.  Simply stated, they want to avoid hiring errors – for their sake and yours, the job seeker.

But the “try before you buy” benefit swings both ways.  Once a candidate gets their foot in the door, they also get to decide if they want to keep that door open or closed.  IOW< employees have the same opportunities to test the water before making a long-term commitment as do employers.  While Washington is an “at will” state…allowing employers to end your employment at any time and without reason…employees too, can determine a if a particular job or employer is that “just right fit”.  If it isn’t either party can end the audition without foul.

# 3  The job seeker has a big say in the terms of the Temp-to-Hire audition

….including how long the temp to hire audition lasts – which can be anywhere from 30, 60, 90 days or more.  You’re not stuck in a temp to hire role indefinitely.  If you decide the “fit isn’t right” the audition can end – without penalty.

#4   It’s a great way to try something new when getting back into the job market

Jobseekers who are new to an area, in between jobs, or returning to the job market, often return to the job market looking for something new – a different type of job, a new industry, a different kind of employer (large, small, on the grow, etc.) The Temp-to-Hire opportunity, because the employer spends much less vetting the candidate to have all the skills they could possible need, is a great way to move into a new type of job without having to compete with candidates already skilled and experienced in the kind of work you’d like to do.  Demonstrate that your skills are transferable, and you’re ready for an audition.

One thing I always tell job seekers is that even if a Temp-to-Hire job ends without them being hired,  chances are they will have gained some new skills, new experiences that could be beneficial and help increase your marketability, add value to your resume.  You’ve just increased your competitive edge!

#5  In challenging times, it can be a psychological boost just to get back into the job market & work

There’s nothing like having a regular paycheck in your pocket when you’re building back.  Look at it this way – you get to earn money while having a “long interview” with a prospective employer.

Here’s some quick advice I’d like to share with candidates who are in Temp-to-Hire roles.

This is advice I’ve found important by paying attention to who gets hired after a Temp-to-Hire audition and who doesn’t.  There are some behaviors that I find more than often lead to a candidate being hired, and behaviors that more than often lead to the ending of an audition without being hired.

The overarching principle is that once you’ve been selected for an audition, you should take advantage of the opportunity you have been given to show your value.  This includes showcasing skills and personal qualities you would bring to the table if hired.

Soooo….my first and actually only piece of advice is to treat the opportunity as if you were starting a “full-time” job and wanted to make a career level impression.

  • Stop thinking of yourself as a temp and acclimate yourself as if you were an permanent employee.
  • Show respect, support the company’s vision and mission.
  • Understand their rules of engagement. Show up on time, follow their dress-code.
  • Make sure you know what’s expected of you and make sure you meet those expectations.
  • Meet or beat deadlines.
  • Ask for more to do.
  • Show you have a desire to learn.
  • Build relationships and network

Taking your audition seriously, “walking your talk”, will go a long way to show your prospective employer that you are motivated and eager to make a difference.  Doing this, not only increases your chances of being hired, but chances are will lead to referrals to other opportunities inside the organization.

PACE Staffing Network is one of the Puget Sound’s premier staffing /recruiting agencies and has been helping  Northwest job seekers find their “just right” jobs for over 40 years. A  5-time winner of the coveted “Best in Staffing” designation , PACE is ranked in the top 2% of staffing agencies nationwide based on annual surveys of customer satisfaction.

PACE provides multiple placement options:

For more information on how the PACE Staffing Network can help you find the right Temp-to-Hire audition for you, give our Candidate Services team a call today at 425-637-3311 or send us an Email

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