In April 2021, vacancy growth for temporary roles rose at the quickest rate since October 2014, according to the REC. And, as the economy continues to reopen and organisations look to plug skills gaps without going over budget, the demand for temporary workers is set to continue.
That said, many job hunters are biased against temporary roles due to concerns about the lack of stability and future prospects. Yet temporary work has the potential to be fantastic for you and your career, and you really never know what doors it may open for you. All those years ago, I joined Cathedral Appointments to temporarily cover maternity leave, was taken on permanently, then climbed the career ladder and well, here we are 23 years later!
There are so many reasons why you should consider taking on a temp role – here are just a handful.
Temporary roles give you a chance to explore new career opportunities and can be a step in a totally new direction. If you’re considering changing your career path, a temporary role allows you to have a trial run, as well as enables you to experiment with different roles, industries and departments.
Not only will you gain experience through temporary work, but with each new role you gain transferable skills which can be used across numerous industries. The chance to build experience with new software, different roles and areas of business is something many employees don’t have easy access to. Being able to show a rich and diverse skillset, as well as a commitment to upskilling, immediately makes you more attractive to recruiters.
As well as helping to build your CV, temporary work fills gaps in your employment history. If you’ve had a long period of unemployment, employers may question this. But, undertaking temporary work shows initiative and a willingness to be flexible – both attractive qualities to potential employers.
Sometimes, it really is not what you know, but who you know. Temporary work can be a relatively easy and very effective way to widen your network. Who knows who you’ll meet at the water cooler? Temping provides the ideal situation to build contacts throughout your sector. Whether it’s for references or helping you secure a job further down the line, the opportunities for networking are invaluable.
Temping offers the flexibility that just isn’t possible with permanent jobs. Not having a long-term contract may be scary at first, but it puts you in control of your career. Whether you have caring responsibilities, studies, or are just looking for more freedom, temping can offer the ideal solution. It can also help you achieve a healthier work-life balance and alleviate work-related stress, as you may not feel the long-term build-up of pressure from working in a permanent position.
It’s a myth that temporary workers don’t have the same rights as permanent staff. As temporary worker, you are entitled to worker’s employment rights; these include statutory paid holiday, rest breaks and protection against discrimination. After 12 weeks, you then qualify for the same rights as a permanent staff member.
Temporary roles often have the possibility of turning into permanent roles – just like mine did. Of course, not all of them are guaranteed to lead to a permanent position, but if you’ve impressed your employer and a job opening arises, keeping you in mind – or in the business – will save them both time and money. Take advantage of the unique opportunity to get your foot in the door, test the waters in a new role, and always stay open to embracing all that comes your way.