Employers look to hire more temporary staff to aid business recovery

Temporary staff are becoming increasingly important to businesses as they try to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In times of uncertainty, temporary work can be a real asset to both employers and workers. It allows businesses to create jobs when the future outlook is unclear. It also gives people a chance to get back into work, earn money quickly, and progress into a permanent position.

Temporary staff allow businesses to access skills and talent needed for business recovery

The latest Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC) Jobs Outlook report has found that employers are looking to hire more temporary staff to aid business recovery. As with previous recoveries, businesses will use temporary staffing to build back.

Employers’ intentions to hire temporary agency workers have increased over the past few months, according to the REC’s latest JobsOutlook report. In May-July, their hiring intentions for agency workers in the short term (the next three months) reached net: +6, the highest level since October-December 2019.

Employers’ intentions to hire permanent staff also recovered to net: +5, another sign of confidence returning. Overall, firms are slightly more likely to look to bring on temporary staff than permanent members of staff in the next three months. This is the first time that has been the case since May-July 2018.

When asked why temporary agency workers are important for their organisation, more employers say that agency workers are important for short-term access to key skills. The proportion highlighting this factor rose from 53% in January-March, before lockdown measures were introduced, to 67% in May-July.

A flexible jobs market has always been one of the UK’s great economic assets

Neil Carberry, Chief Executive of the REC, said “A flexible jobs market has always been one of the UK’s great economic assets – keeping employment high in the good times and ensuring people have more options when times are tough.

“Today’s data show that as lockdown eases and the economy recovers, businesses will use temporary staff to start to build back. That makes sense, and matches the pattern of previous recoveries. While the path ahead is still uncertain, temporary work helps firms create jobs sooner, and helps people who need new jobs get back to earning quickly.”

Employers’ intentions to hire temps in the medium term (over the next 4-12 months) were also high, at net: +13. This is the highest this measure has been since August-October 2018. It suggests that an increasing proportion of businesses will use flexible labour to adapt and grow in the coming months.

REC research shows that temporary work is not only important for employers, but for workers as well. Two in five (39%) people in Britain have done temporary, contract or freelance work during their lives. The majority of whom do this by choice. One in three (36%) chose to do this to find work quickly. Three in ten (28%) used temporary work to earn money quickly.

Many also use temporary work as a stepping stone and progress into permanent positions. Two in three (68%) of those who have done temporary work in the past are now in a permanent role.

greenbean’s Flexible Workforce Management

Managing a temporary or contractor workforce can be costly, time consuming and a huge administrative undertaking. greenbean’s Flexible Workforce Management takes control of your flexible workforce, providing you with full visibility of your team through one solution.

We source all of your temporary staff and contractors, ensure compliance with Agency Worker Regulations and provide you with one consolidated invoice. A dedicated, on site Account Manager manages all temporary worker and hiring manager queries including payroll, sickness and holidays. This allows your HR team to get on with day to day tasks. This service can bring you cost savings and ensures effective employer brand management.

Learn more about the clients who use our Flexible Workforce Management here.