Ross Bentley explains what UK managers should do to make full use of temporary workers and help them utilise their time
An estimated 26 million UK workers are set to take a holiday over the summer, so who's going to do all the work? Inevitably, many companies will turn to the 1.4 million registered temporary workers to fill the gaps.
But managers welcoming temps into their places of work must ensure they maximise the temps' time and help the temp to assimilate into their team.
Personnel Today offers some tips on how to get the best out of temp workers.
1) Show them the ropes:
“It is essential that at the beginning of an assignment all temporary staff are provided with a full description of the role and an understanding of the company's expectations,” says Shelley Bolton, business manager at the Telford office of recruitment firm Manpower.
“A full health and safety induction should also be provided, alongside any particular company policies regarding breaks, dress code and hours of work.”
Managers are also advised to spend time introducing a temp to the rest of team so they feel comfortable from the start. Assigning a member of the permanent team as a guide for the temp may be a good idea and will also give a junior member of staff the chance to shine with this extra responsibility.
Don't be afraid to ask temps to learn a new software system - many will be used to going into new surroundings and picking things up quickly.
2) Show respect:
Today's temps aren't just dumb paper pushers, so respect their intelligence.
According to Tom Hadley, director of external relations at the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), many temps are experienced, well-skilled workers who have chosen to work temporarily to fit in with their circumstances. “They may have young families or be returning to work - so make the most of their knowledge,” he says.
Hadley suggests inviting temps to comment on how processes can be improved, as they may add a fresh insight to the work. Also, he advises not to discriminate between temps and permanent staff when discussing team issues - this will help the temps to feel part of the team.
3) Inclusion and pay
“Encourage temps to accompany the regulars for informal drinks after work and make sure they're included on official company-organised events," recommends th