How Do Temp Job Agencies Work?


Quick Answer

A temp job agency, or staffing agency, is hired by an employer to find workers with the skills needed to fill certain temporary positions. Staffing agencies help bridge employment gaps for workers who are between jobs, and they assist companies that are struggling to recruit qualified candidates on their own. A temp agency has an army of workers from which it can choose to fill positions for its clients.

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Full Answer

The staffing agency employs the temporary workers, not the client. This is convenient for the agency's client companies because the staffing agency handles hiring, terminations and payroll functions, including withholding of employment, payroll and Medicare taxes. This arrangement also shields the agency's client companies from wrongful termination suits. In most cases, all the client company needs to do is specify to the staffing agency how many employees it needs for which jobs and the time period during which the temporary workers are required.

Hourly pay rates are generally negotiated between the staffing agency and the employer. Staffing agencies earn money by charging their client companies by the hour for the work performed for them by the staffing agency's employees. Staffing agencies often earn as much per hour as their workers. In highly skilled professions, the staffing agency often earns more than the worker. To get a job with a staffing agency, a candidate generally interviews with the staffing agency, and the agency's recruiters search for a match between the candidate's skills and the job openings at the agency's client companies.

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