Around a third of workers in temporary contracts are doing temp work for the first time, according to a survey by Indeed Flex.
It found that 32% of temporary workers were doing so for the first time, while 47% have been temping for less than 12 months – with the rising cost of living a factor in many taking on these jobs.
Almost half of workers surveyed by Indeed Flex (46%) started a temp role in the past six months to boost their income to cope with rising prices.
Inflation in the year to September rose by 10.1% according to the Consumer Prices Index measure, while food prices rose by 14.6% over the same period.
Workers are also looking for temporary work to support them with the cost of Christmas, to top up income from their own small business, or a desire to have more flexibility in the hours they work, Indeed Flex found.
Just over a quarter 28%) of temporary workers fit temp work shifts around their full-time job, and 11% around a part-time job. Nearly a fifth (17%) fit temporary work around their childcare arrangements, and 8% around education. Six percent are retired.
Older workers account for much of the rise in temporary work. Forty-one percent of those surveyed by Indeed Flex were between the ages of 50 and 70. A fifth (19%) said they were doing similar work to when they were a student.
Those aged 18-30 now account for under a third (29%) of people doing exclusively temporary work.
Novo Constare, CEO and co-founder of Indeed Flex, said this year had seen a particular expansion in the type of people attracted to temporary work.
“While the desire to top up their income is a common thread for many, the temp workforce is becoming increasingly diverse,” he said.
“Temping is more than just an instant and practical way to earn more money – its flexibility enables people to fit shifts around their lifestyle.
“Our research shows that not only are temps fitting jobs around full and part time roles, they are also using it to support the things that really matter to them – from childcare to education, running their own business and even retirement.”
Research from Rest Less, a community for the over 50s, echoed Indeed Flex’s findings about older workers. It found that 57% of over 50s were looking for flexible working opportunities, while 67% favoured a return to part-time work.