While much of the news surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the economy has involved job losses and business closures, there is another side to the story. Surging demand online has led to immense pressure on supply chains and logistics providers, while many manufacturers and businesses in previously-niche industries have recorded new waves of interest. The result is a labor shortage—and with it, the potential for delays and lost revenue.
Many businesses have a newfound reliance on temporary workers. Whether they are placed into the position through temp agencies or selected via the company's own hiring process, temporary employees can fill in the gaps to meet deadlines and help businesses achieve their targets during chaotic quarters. How can businesses make the best use of these resources without making costly errors?
Avoid Cutting Back Onboarding Processes
Although they may have a pressing need for labor, it is crucial for businesses to maintain consistency in the procedures that they use for hiring. This consistency includes, where allowed by law, requiring temporary worker background checks such as the US OneSEARCH and properly vetting every individual before bringing them on board. Just because an employee may only work at the company for three to six months does not mean that they cannot pose a risk to the business or its customers.
While striving to fill labor shortages, do not lose sight of the need to safeguard against the risks of negligent hiring.
Don't Miss the Chance to Permanently Hire Top Talent
When a temp's contract ends or they complete their assignment, should you let them walk out the door? For many businesses, it is a reasonable idea—they have filled a need and no longer require the role. However, from time to time, businesses may identify temp workers who are particularly good fits for the business or bring essential skills to the table.
Developing a complete temp-to-hire pipeline in advance will allow you to make an offer early and potentially avoid losing a valuable addition to your permanent team.
Foster Team Cohesion with an Inclusive Culture
Be aware of the friction that can result from the mingling of full-time employees and temps and mitigate it by promoting a company culture that keeps everyone on an equal footing. Treating temps as valued, respected team members increases your likelihood of identifying and encouraging the employees you'd like to bring on board permanently.
Some industries, especially the logistics sector, will continue to require larger numbers of temporary employees as pandemic-related economic factors persist. Others have always relied on temps, but new realities merit a re-assessment of their role. By applying the same principles to these workers as full-time employees, from properly vetting them at the time of hire to providing a pathway for advancement, companies can make the most of this vital labor resource.
About Michael Klazema The author
Michael Klazema is Chief Marketing Technologist at EY-VODW.com and has over two decades of experience in digital consulting, online product management, and technology innovation. He is the lead author and editor for Dallas-based backgroundchecks.com with a focus on human resource and employment screening developments.