So you want to Temp?


The world of temping is an exciting one indeed! Whether you want to temp while you are looking for a specific permanent role, or you have no idea about what career pathway to take so you want to experience as many different industries as possible to assist you in your career decision. With temping becoming more and more popular, what are the key things that you can do to stand out and be the high performing temp that everyone wants?

Staying in touch…

Coming in and registering your interest with us, and then following up with a well-written ‘Thank you’ e-mail is great – but not enough. It’s the things you do after that that really count. I tell every candidate that I interview to stay in touch with me on a regular basis –e-mail/ call me weekly to advise me of your availability for any last minute temp assignments that come up for the next week. Only 1 out of 20 candidates actually do this and it’s those candidates that are at the top of my mind if anything comes up. You may do this 10 times in a row and I may have nothing suitable come up – but when that glorious message comes in on a Tuesday morning at 7:45 AM on our Rusher Rogers paging service while I’m listening to how the weather forecast for the day has changed from 22 degrees and sunny to -3 degrees with a chance of rain (while it’s pouring outside) asking for a receptionist immediately for the day, guess who I remember is available? Not the person who was exceptionally presented and had years of experience that I interviewed one month ago, but the candidate who consistently kept in touch with me since our interview 3 months prior. Your initiative is a big part of your brand in temping!

When you get that last minute call…

Let’s go back to that paging message that’s come in at 7:45 AM. I go straight to my list of temp candidates to call – the first calls go out to the ones that have been in touch with me on a regular basis. Generally, because it’s these candidates that have been in touch with me and that I know are available, the position is filled immediately within 3 calls. If for some reason I don’t get through and hit the voicemail, after leaving a voicemail descripting the urgent nature of my call, I move on straight to the next person. If candidate number 4 calls me back before candidate number 1 does, candidate 4 has got the job. This is the next step in temping – speed!

You had something last minute come up although yesterday you were available…

That’s fine! We are all human. As much as you may try to plan out your whole week on Sunday night, life sometimes just happens. You might get the chicken pox or need to help a family member out with something urgently. All you have to do is just e-mail or call instead of leaving my voice mail to go into an empty abyss to be forgotten about by everyone – but me. It’s important to understand that just because you have to say no to one assignment, that doesn’t mean that I won’t contact you for something else. The key here is communicating and updating me as soon as practically possible. If I don’t hear from you at all, that indicates that either your communication is weak which is essential in temp-land!

You got through all of this, and secured the assignment…

Now this is your time to shine! It’s time to make the most of this assignment to prove just how good you are. Not just sitting around and waiting to be asked to do things but taking initiative, being proactive and actively looking for things to do. This is what distinguishes a regular temp from a high performing temp. What happens then? It will be you specifically that the client asks for when they need an extra hand. Sometimes they may even try and create some work for you just to get you back in as they feel that you are an asset to their organisation.

It’s always the little things that make a big difference, as mentioned in ‘The little things with a not-so-little impact’. So focus on these things to be our best temp yet! For more information on temping and to keep updated on new jobs we recruit for, like us and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn.


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