Temporary workers have now become an active part of the work force. Although earlier on, this was just a way to fill a space for an employee that was on leave or unable to come to work for some time, now it’s a different game for the temporary candidates. Some corporations look towards temp agencies to fill all their staff needs and help establish a good HR and process.

So for those who apply as a temporary employee, here are some things to keep in mind when considering what exactly is an employer looking for:

Fast learner and self starter

Okay, so the first thing you need to understand is that as a person who is applying for a temporary position, the employer must be able to see that you are a fast learner who will not have problems getting familiar with the way things work.

As an example, let’s suppose the company that you work with uses its own software to go about the daily activities.  The person that you are replacing must have known the software well which is why you would need to get to their level of understanding of the software and fast. The company would not want to invest time and money in a person that is going to be there temporarily.

The main challenge for the temporary employee would be to convince the interviewer that they have got what it takes. Take your A game along and do a little research about the company before you sit for the interview so that the employer knows you have done your homework.


Temporary workers are sometimes seen as miracle workers that can get anything done, basically a jack of all trades. You may find yourself being shifted from one department to the other to cover for someone else, which is why you should be able to understand what is required of you and when.

Adaptability is a skill and for those who possess it, understanding the basics of each department is a must. A temp that can hold their ground well in any department would be perfect for any position.


Yes, this is a big challenge. As a person who sees themselves as a temporary employee in a workplace, they cannot seem very enthusiastic about it, but the ones who do, are the ones who make it in this business.

For a temporary employee, bringing their best game to any assignment they are given will mean good reviews and that means you may find more offers from your agency thrown your way. In cases where the company loves the temporary employee, they might even offer them a permanent position in the company, but that is of course up to you if you want to take the job in one company or live the adventurous life of a temporary employee, going from one organization to the other.

For more information on temporary employment and what to expect, log on to Short Stints.

Share this article: