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By Khalilah Starks

The employment market continues to be a challenge for many people.  One of the things that I’ve observed is employers continued reliance on temporary workers.  Some companies have been a bit reluctant to add permanent employees because of the sheer uncertainty of our economy.  They have more work that needs to be done, but they’re not ready to commit to hiring permanent employees.  The operative word here is “ready” because, at some point, they may be ready to commit to the right person.  There are also lots of companies that use the “try before you buy” strategy when hiring.  So, they always hire temporary workers and convert the best performers to permanent status.

So, what does all this mean?  You should definitely consider temporary or contract jobs as a viable option during your job search.  If you happen to find a great temporary job, here are three tips to help you convert that temporary job into a permanent gig.

1. Over-Deliver

Give them more than what they ask for.  Then you’ll truly be an asset and they’ll think twice about letting you go.  Companies need great problem solvers.   Pay attention to their inefficiencies or struggles and suggest improvements.  Your goal is to show that you not only can do the job, but can add extra value to the company as well.  I’ve seen managers make permanent space for great temporary employees or extend temporary contracts when they weren’t able to create a permanent space.  Companies hate letting talented people walk out the door.

2. Strive for Perfect Attendance

Absenteeism and tardiness issues continue to plague many companies.  Managers hate dealing with employees who chronically come to work late or take off unexpectedly.  It’s a huge disruption to the workflow and a major annoyance to the business.  During your trial run as a temporary employee, you need to show that you are dependable and have great work ethic.  Say goodbye to the prospect of being hired permanently if an employer gets the slightest sense that you could become an attendance issue.

3. Network

Networking never ends.  You should be getting to know as many people in the company as you can.  The more that people know about you and your abilities, the better chance you’ll have of being hired permanently.  Companies look for people who can fit in their culture.  The more you get to know permanent staff and build relationships, the more you’ll fit in with their culture.  Likability can definitely affect your ability to make your temporary place a permanent home.  In the event where you’re not able to convert it to a permanent job, you’ll still walk away with great connections that can assist you in finding your next job.


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