Lots of job seekers are conflicted about taking on temporary work, thinking it will jeopardize their permanent job search. As a job seeker, you may be confronted with the same dilemma… Do I take a temp job and risk missing out on my dream opportunity? Or do I miss out on a great temp opportunity to wait for my dream job that may or may not be right around the corner?
There are actually many benefits to being proactive and taking on temporary opportunities, and they can even help you find that permanent dream job!
1. Avoid Gaps in Your Resume
There’s a difference between a “jumpy” resume and one that is strategically filled with contract roles. As long as you clearly identify your contract jobs as temporary assignments, it shows your adaptability, ability to learn new things quickly, and your initiative to work. Potential employers often voice concerns over karge resume games, but rarely over a resume with a lot of contract roles.
2. Money, of Course!
Temping is a wonderful way to keep a paycheck coming in week after week. You get paid your hourly wage, plus vacation pay paid out weekly, so your life doesn’t need to be put on hold just because your job search is.
3. Temp-to-Perm Assignments
If you have considered temp work in the past, I am sure you have heard your recruiter say the phrase, “Of course there is always the opportunity for the role to become permanent.” These are called ‘Temp-to-Perm’ or Temporary-to-Permanent assignments. Hiring managers often knowingly approach roles with the expectation that they become permanent. They may or may not choose to have this disclosed to the candidate upfront, that way they can see the truest working nature of the temp before making a permanent hiring decision.
4. Opportunity to Turn Every Temp Assignment Into a Permanent Role
Recruiters will typically avoid saying there is 0% chance that a role will become permanent. Often employers will say they have no room or need for a permanent person on their team, but after only a few weeks of a stellar temp, they make the space available. Often this decision is made because the temp brings a skill set to the table they didn’t know they even needed, or is such a perfect fit in their culture that they just have to hire them. Every temp assignment is an opportunity to prove yourself invaluable to and positively influence a team.
5. Have Your Cake and Eat It Too
Having a temporary assignment doesn’t have to mean your permanent job search stops. I always ask my contract employees to commit to the entire length of the contract and to structure their permanent search in a way that will not conflict with their temp assignment. But sometimes your dream job does present itself in the middle of an assignment, and hopefully you have chosen to work with a recruiter who supports your goals and can guide you through accepting your exciting new opportunity without burning any bridges!
Here are a few tips on how to do that:
- Remember that your new employer expects you’ll need to give two weeks’ notice, and may be nervous about hiring a candidate who is willing to leave a contract with no notice!
- Know that start dates can be negotiated. In a hot market, employers choose a start date as soon as possible to make sure they don’t lose great candidates, but if they know you need extra time to wrap up an assignment, they will usually be willing to push the date.
- When you partner with recruiter who truly understands your goals, they will celebrate your permanent job offer and help you negotiate the acceptance and notice period.