Is it quiet or is it me?
As a temp, it is easy to develop a complex, you may feel you are constantly being told “I haven’t got anything outstanding at the moment” OR “we expect it to pick up again soon”. As a recruiter I will be honest and say that I use these phrases when speaking to candidates about the current market.
For those that are curious, it may reassure you to know the following. The market is quieter than we have seen in recent months.
What traditionally happens after a summer is support staff, across media, embark on their holidays (flights and hotels are cheaper!). This normally sees an increase in temping opportunities to provide cover for all of the gaps!
So why isn’t it busy now then? Well, my theory is that many Londoners got their holiday fix over the Olympics period.
However, as we slowly approach November and people start to realise they have ‘x’ amount of holiday days to take, we will see another increase in temporary bookings.
When the market is like this, we still get a flow of temporary bookings coming through the door – these will most likely be from our bigger clients or the ones that have the disposable income to lighten the work load with a temp! In most cases I will provide these clients with a temp that they know and trust. This is easier for the client, the candidate and me because temp recruitment is about simplicity and this consistency keeps things simple.
If you are a new temp to an agency or perhaps a temp who is yet to work for the agency you have signed up to, here is the best bit of advice I can give you – If you have specified that you are free immediately and you are happy to do anything, you really have to back this up. Too often candidates tell me they are desperate for work but when I call them in the morning, with a last minute booking, they turn it down. Although some notice would be ideal, most of my regular temps have started this way and now get the pick of the bookings because they are so reliable.
It is usually first come first serve as well, so if you want work, make sure your phone is switched on and you are prepared to rise and shine when the call comes through.
Anyway – in summary, it isn’t you, it’s the market. I am confident however that we are experiencing a calm before a very wet, windy, snowy, and wintery storm!
Sam Stock – Head of Temporary Division