Five Common Job Mistakes that Temporary Employees Shouldn’t Make

Here’s a blog post from our past that we felt was really worth re-presenting to a new “generation” of readers. It’s rather mandatory reading for any temp employee hoping to make a good impression on his or her supervisors for future success.


Currently, it’s estimated that around two to three percent of the nation’s workforce are temporary employees or contract workers. If you’re considering temporary work yourself for any reason, the benefits can be numerous. First off, temporary employment allows you to get your foot in the door at companies that might otherwise prove challenging to penetrate. Indeed, some companies have deals with temp agencies where ONLY their temp employees are placed on-location and permanent hiring comes from those temp workers.

Temp employment placements also enable workers to try different types of positions, to gain new skills, and often they allow a degree of flexibility not typically granted in permanent jobs. Before you head out on your first temporary assignment, however, or IF you’ve forgotten these basic principles, be aware of the most common mistakes made by temporary employees so that you can avoid committing these missteps yourself. YOU want to look responsible and hard-working while on-the-job, don’t you?

Not communicating with your staffing company. Even though you’re working on-site at a client company, you’re still an employee of a staffing company such as Flex-Team Inc. Thus, any job concerns should go directly to your recruiter before you deal with the on-site company. Likewise, if you’re running late or need to miss a day of work, let your recruiter know. If you’re interested in a permanent position at the client company, communicate that interest to your recruiter too. This may sometimes seem counter-intuitive but keep it mind – your temp agency placed you in the position and they have the relationship with the business where you are working.

Job searching at work. If you’re using temporary employment to bridge the gap in between permanent positions, you’re likely searching for long-term positions on a daily basis. That’s completely alright and understandable – however, make sure to leave your searching at home when you start your temporary job. Even if you’ve completed all of your assigned tasks, it’s not a free pass to peruse job boards online. Instead, consider asking your supervisor how else you can help or be of assistance at work.

Using Your Cell Phone outside of Lunch and Breaks. This may seem like a perfectly commonsense behavior, but our present new-found infatuation with cellular technology has created an entire generation of cell phone “addicts” who must look at their phones at least several times an hour. This is simply not acceptable in a work situation. First off, a worker is being paid to work, not to talk on the phone or surf the web. Secondly, some positions are within industries that are situated in potentially dangerous environments – NOT paying attention while on the job due to cell phone distractions can be dangerous for employees and the products/machinery being utilized. An employee should not use their cell phone except during personal times at work such as at lunch or during breaks. All Flex-Team employees are instructed on this etiquette.

Chronic tardiness. It’s only a temp job, so does it really matter if you’re five minutes late? YES! In fact, your attendance and punctuality matter a great deal. Your on-site supervisor will report any concerns about your reliability to your staffing company, so if you’re chronically tardy or absent, you’re not likely to get placed on future assignments. Tardiness also makes your temp agency look bad, since they’re the ones who are furnishing tardy workers to the hiring company.

Showing no initiative. You should treat every temporary assignment as a potential working interview. After all, you never know when a permanent opportunity might arise at the company. If you’re doing the bare minimum and then using your spare time to read a book or gossip with co-workers, you’re showing a lack of initiative that’s unlikely to get you hired on a permanent basis. Some supervisors will even request that “lazy” temporary employees be replaced with more energetic workers.

If you’re interested in administrative or light industrial temporary work, you’ve come to the right place with Flex-Team Inc. Please contact us today to discuss available temp opportunities with our many customers. And keep in-mind these tips about common work mistakes – they can help you to excel in temporary employment!

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