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More temporary jobs seem to be turning permanent

Posted February 2, 2010

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With unemployment numbers at some of their highest levels, temporary work is becoming an attractive option to those without jobs.

Michael Lane, branch manger of AccountTemps in Raleigh, says more people are seeking temporary work, and experts agree that companies seem to be making temporary workers permanent employees.

Jeannette Moss, director of job placement at Wake Tech, says she is seeing more companies that want to hire candidates on a temporary basis. The challenge, however, is that with more people turning to temporary work, the competition to get those jobs is much greater, she said.

"A lot of the employers are nervous about hiring permanent folks, so they would much rather hire a temp," Moss said.

More temp jobs become permanent More temp jobs become permanent

Right now, directors say the best fields for finding temporary work are in health care, IT or financial services.

"It is an opportunity to kind of audition for a permanent job," Lane said. "So don't necessarily think of a temp job as just a temporary position."

Theresa Cochran became a permanent hire through a temporary job. Nearly two years ago, she lost her job as a data analyst for GlaxoSmithKline.

"It was very difficult, especially after spending 21 years of your life with the company that meant so much to you," Cochran said.

With the help of a temporary-employment service agency, she eventually found work at a bank. Within three months, she was hired full time as an executive assistant.

"I really love it where I'm at," she said. "I'm at home."


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  • Picaflora Feb 11, 2010

    Mike Lane with AccouTemps actually helped me land my permanent position. It took 9 months from when the temp position started... but the company was on a hiring freeze and just coming off a lay-off/restructure a month before I started.

    Temp jobs kept me afloat during my unemployment - it gave me a chance to keep up on my skiils, gain experience, and earn more than I would from unemployment.

  • babbleon Feb 10, 2010

    Maybe this week's Newsweek, about how laying off workers is bad business, will start to get through to management.

  • mjjunk Feb 4, 2010

    I agree with Reader X. I think most companies are seeing Temps as a way to permanently staff their ranks for cheap with the false hope of *maybe* someday becoming a full time employee. I am a temp that was told when I started that I would have the opportunity to go full time. Instead, this company has a regular habit of hiring temp people for just 2 years and then letting them go... just to end up hiring MORE temp workers. I am a good worker - my boss tells me that almost every week. So why can't I get hired? Company profits is why.

  • Reader X Feb 3, 2010

    Personally I don't see this to be true. I see more and more of these large companies lay off the regulars and hire them back as temps, but it never goes the other way. I've been a temp for the last 3 years and it seems to only be getting worse. I think temp work also has a great affect on health care. You end up taking a 1/3 pay cut and can not afford to buy the healthcare and vacation packages offered by temp services. So you go without. Just my personal experience.