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Debbie Fledderjohann, President of Top Echelon ContractingEmployer-sponsored healthcare insurance is becoming more complex and expensive every year.  Whether or not you have employees or offer healthcare insurance, this is a trend that WILL impact your recruiting business.

In the past decade, health insurance premiums for employer-sponsored plans have gone up 80-100%.  Nearly half of the employers surveyed for the Aflac Workforce Report listed cost containment, including healthcare insurance costs, as their top business concern, compared to 28% in 2011.

“The research shows how the need to control costs is driving workforce decisions,” said Teresa White, executive vice president and chief operating officer for Aflac Columbus.  “For four consecutive years, we have witnessed this growing trend and can foresee the possible ramifications for the U.S. workforce.”

Why Health Insurance Premiums Are Increasing

Those workforce decisions are impacting everyone in the employment arena, including independent recruiters.  But before we discuss that, let’s look at what is feeding this upward trend in premiums.  The first place people tend to look is Obamacare, or more formally, the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  Forbes magazine recently listed four factors related to the ACA that impact premiums:

  1. Commercial underwriting restrictions—Insurers can no longer apply a number of techniques they have used to lower their costs.  They must now offer coverage to participants’ children up to age 26, and they can no longer apply pre-exisitng condition exclusions or lifetime limits on coverage, for example.
  2. Insurers can no longer base premiums on age.
  3. The ACA applied new taxes and fees to insurance companies that are typically passed to employers.
  4. Plans must now include “Essential Health Benefits,” including ambulatory patient services, emergency services, substance abuse disorder services, etc.

However, the ACA is NOT the only thing to blame. Here are some other catalysts:

  • High insurance claims
  • Aging population
  • Unhealthy lifestyles
  • Costly technological advances
  • Inaccessibility of healthcare pricing to allow consumers to make cost-effective choices

Small employers are taking an even harder hit because their participant pool is not large enough to absorb high medical bills.  One participant with high claims can easily result in a massive premium increase at a smaller organization.

Cost-Containment Methods

Employers have to find a way to cover these high, and often unexpected, costs.  They are being forced to make difficult decisions that impact the entire business, including the following:

  1. Shifting costs to employees—To minimize the premium increases, many employers have been forced to choose plan designs with higher deductibles, co-pays, coinsurance, etc.  The number of workers covered under high deductible plans has quadrupled in the past 7 years, according to The Kaiser Family Foundation.  Some employers are contributing a lower percentage toward employees’ benefits premiums, as well.  The end result of these techniques is shifting more costs to the workers.
  2. Shifting costs to customers—Ultimately, some of the cost also shifts to a business’s customers in the form of higher prices on goods and services.  However, there is a limit to how high a company can raise prices while remaining competitive.
  3. Staffing decisions—You are probably already aware that some companies are freezing hiring and/or reducing employee hours to part-time to avoid the upcoming employer mandate of Obamacare.  While the effective date of the mandate keeps getting extended, employers with 50 or more full-time employees will be required to provide healthcare insurance to those employees.  But employers under the mandate aren’t the only ones to employ these techniques as premium increases affect companies of all sizes.  Any company grappling with high insurance costs will be looking at these and other methods (e.g., freezing raises) to reduce the impact of healthcare costs.
  4. Eliminating healthcare—Some employers will just drop healthcare coverage altogether, even if that means facing fines under the Obamacare employer mandate.  For some, it will be cheaper to pay the fines than offer coverage.

Impact on Recruiting Firms

Recruiters should also brace themselves for the impact of healthcare costs.  You may notice, for example, that more candidates will weigh the TOTAL compensation package in their decision to take a position, not just salary.   This is especially important now that the ACA is requiring most Americans to have health insurance under the individual mandate.  Therefore, negotiations may be more difficult if quality benefits are not available.

Direct-hire job orders could also decrease as employers try to contain costs.  Contract job orders, though, could increase because companies will still need to get work done.  This is likely one reason why contract staffing continues to grow.  If your firm does not already offer contracting, the time to start is now.

Recruiters who employ in-house staff and/or contractors will be more directly impacted by healthcare costs.  If you are a larger firm, you may be required to offer coverage under the employer mandate of the ACA.  But even if you do not meet the 50-employee threshold, you may need benefits to attract quality contractors.  You will have to weigh the cost and administrative burden of offering the benefits versus the candidates you may lose by not.  Another option is to outsource the employment of your contractors to a contract staffing back-office, such as Top Echelon Contracting, that provides contractor benefits.  That can be a great way to brand yourself as a recruiting firm of choice without taking on the complexities of offering healthcare insurance.

The cost of healthcare is a problem that is not going away.  You will want to remain educated on the issue and put yourself in the best position to succeed in this increasingly challenging environment.  The best way to do that is to become a sole-source provider who can provide all of your clients’ staffing needs by offering a variety of options, including contract staffing.

(Editor’s note: This article is intended for informational purposes only and should NOT in any way be construed as legal advice.)

By DEBBIE FLEDDERJOHANN, President of Top Echelon Contracting

Debbie Fledderjohann, President of Top Echelon Contracting

Driven by a presidential decree, the Department of Labor (DOL) is working hard to revise the laws regarding who can be exempt from overtime.  If you have contractors who are currently classified as exempt, you will want to stay up on the changes.

In March, President Obama issued a memorandum asking the DOL to update the regulations surrounding who can legally be considered exempt from overtime.  It was recently announced that the new, proposed regulations are expected to be published in November.

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), most American workers must be paid at a rate of 1.5 times their regular pay rate for any hours worked over 40 in a workweek.  Some employees can be denied overtime if they qualify for the executive, administrative, and professional exemptions, otherwise known as the “white collar exemptions.”

President Obama is seeking to make fewer people ineligible for overtime under these exemptions.  To that end, his memorandum to Secretary of Labor Tom Perez directed the DOL to do the following:

  1. “Modernize and streamline” the overtime regulations to make them more consistent with the original intent of the FLSA.
  2. Address the changes in the modern workforce.
  3. Make them easier for both employers and workers to understand.

We will not know the content of these changes until the proposed regulations are released, but they will undoubtedly include changes to the “minimum salary” and “duties” tests that must be met for a position to be considered exempt.  A Fact Sheet released by the White House states that the minimum salary requirement has failed to keep up with inflation.  In fact, it has only been changed twice in 40 years, currently standing at $455 per week, which is below the poverty level for a worker with a family of four.  Someone could even fall under the minimum wage if they had to work 65 or more hours per week and were only paid the minimum salary required by the white collar exemptions.  In addition, that salary threshold makes it so that only 12% of Americans qualify for overtime, compared with 65% in 1975.  Experts believe the salary threshold could be increased to as high as $1,000 per week.

They also expect an update to the “duties tests.”  Each exemption spells out what duties must be performed to allow the employee to be exempt.  For example, workers under the Executive Exemption must be managing the enterprise or a department or subdivision and regularly directing the work of at least two other full-time employees.  The duties tests will likely become more specific, possibly dictating an exact percent of time a worker must spend doing certain duties to qualify.

Even if you outsource the employment of your contractors to a back-office service, this is an important issue.  You will want to be sure to do the following:

  1. Keep up-to-date on the regulations.  Again, the changes will not happen overnight.  The DOL spent two years deciding on changes for the last revision in 2004.  Still, you will want to keep this issue on your radar so that when the regulations are updated, you are ready.
  2. Educate clients.  If you have exempt contractors placed at any of your client companies, they need to be made aware that you may need to increase some contractors’ salaries to keep them as exempt, or you may have to make them nonexempt.  Either way, your clients’ costs could increase, and they will likely appreciate a heads-up, especially considering the new regulations could apply to some of their direct hire staff, as well.
  3. Follow current federal AND state laws.  While waiting for the new regulations, it’s important that you and your clients continue to comply with the DOL’s current regulations.  Don’t forget rules in certain states, such as California and New York.  For example, in California, the salary of an exempt worker can be no less than twice the minimum wage for a full-time employee.  The minimum is currently $640, but will increase to $800 in 2016.

Hopefully, we will have a better picture of the new regulations this fall when the proposed regulations are supposed to be released.  We will be sure to keep you posted as this issue continues to develop.

(Editor’s note: This article is intended for informational purposes only and should NOT in any way be construed as legal advice.)

By DEBBIE FLEDDERJOHANN, President of Top Echelon Contracting

Summer is here, at least unofficially, and with it comes the start of many summer internship programs.  These programs can be great for students AND for the companies that utilize their services.  Students, of course, gain useful experience and can “get their foot in the door” at a company.  And for companies, internships are a way to get summer help at a reasonable price.

But there is a difference between “reasonable” and free, and the latter could land your clients in trouble.  The Department of Labor (DOL) has been looking closely at unpaid internships to determine if they comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  In order to be legal, they must meet six criteria as stated on the DOL’s Fact Sheet on Internships:

6 Criteria of Legal Unpaid Internships

  1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment.
  2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern.
  3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff.
  4. The employer that provides the training /internship derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern, and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded.
  5.  The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship.
  6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.

The DOL is not the only thing employers have to fear, though.  If unpaid interns believe they have been treated unfairly, they can file class action lawsuits, as the former interns of the Black Swan film did against Fox Searchlight Pictures.  Companies targeted these lawsuits could have to pay back wages, in addition to damages and fines.

Considering that nearly half of all interns are unpaid, there’s a good chance that a number of internships are not compliant with the FLSA.  You may want to encourage your clients to take a close look at their programs to make sure they are legal.  That doesn’t mean they need to abandon their internship programs, which can be a great way to identify and groom potential talent.  Nor do they need to hire interns as traditional employees, which comes with a lot of additional costs and legal liability.

Instead, you can offer to convert their interns to contractors who will become W-2 employees of a contract staffing back-office.  The back-office retains the employment responsibility and liability.  Meanwhile, you gain a valuable additional source of summer income.  How’s that for a happy summer?

(Editor’s note: This article is intended for informational purposes only and should NOT in any way be construed as legal advice.)

For many years, The Cornerstone, the newsletter of Top Echelon Contracting, was sent to the recruiters of Top Echelon Network.

Contract split placementsThe Cornerstone was eventually discontinued in favor of another newsletter, Contracting Corner, which is now published once a quarter.  (Click here to access past issues of the Contracting Corner.)

However, we at Top Echelon Network still run contract split placements made by Preferred Member recruiters in select issues of The Pinnacle Newsletter Blog . . . and this is one of those select issues!

Below are are recent contract split placements made by Top Echelon Network recruiters and handled by Top Echelon Contracting, the recruiter’s back-office solution.

Congratulations to the recruiters involved!  We hope there are many more contract splits in your future!

Contract Split Placements Made by Preferred Member Recruiters

Multiplier Used

Agency Code

Client Recruiter

Recruiter’s Firm Name

Agency Code

Candidate Recruiter

Recruiter’s Firm Name

Job Title


1.83 AC45 Carl L. Bradford Bradford Search Consultants, LLC BC73 Tom Edwards Front Line Search Solutions LLC Translator $11.44
1.44 MA32 Donna Carroll Systems Personnel MA22 Gary Silver The Shay Group Integration Consultant $15.98


Many of the Top Producers in Top Echelon Network have added contract staffing to their recruiting firm’s business model.  Not only that, but they’ve also taken advantage of the services provided by Top Echelon Contracting.

For more information about contract staffing and the back-office services that Top Echelon Contracting provides, call 888.627.3678, x2.

Has your firm backed away from its contract staffing services due to the hassle and financial and legal liability that comes with it?  If so, you are NOT alone.  But it might surprise you to know that some recruiters who had abandoned their contract staffing services are now returning to contracting.

These recruiters have found that they can get all of the benefits of contract staffing (steady income source, increased sales, becoming a sole-source provider to clients, etc.) WITHOUT the additional task and liabilities that come with employing the contractors.

Jeri BartunekThat’s what Network Member Jeri Bartunek is doing.  For 20 years, her firm, Bartunek Group Global Recruiting, did nothing but contract placements.  Although she says that contract staffing was a “fabulous revenue stream,” she stopped offering that service when she was burned by a client during the recession.  As the employer of her contractors, she was responsible for the payroll processing AND funding.

In short, she paid the contractors before she got paid by the end client.  That was all well and good until a client didn’t have the ability to pay their $80,000 tab.  That’s when Bartunek decided to shift her firm’s focus to direct hire, which they have done exclusively for the past several years.

Bartunek recently decided to re-establish the firm’s contract staffing services.  So what happened?  Did employing contractors suddenly get less risky?  Did she have a guarantee that her clients would always pay?  No.  She simply became aware of the option to outsource the employment of her contractors to a contract staffing back-office service.

As the legal employer of her contractors, the back-office service is responsible for the payroll processing and funding, as well as all of the collections and other administrative tasks, including legal contracts, employment paperwork, background checks, unemployment, Workers’ Compensation, benefits administration, etc.

“With direct hire, it’s really great to get that big check, but with contract staffing, there is a ton of opportunity and a constant revenue stream that you don’t have with direct hire,” Bartunek said.

Scott LeishmanMeanwhile, for Network Member Scott Leishman and his firm, bizjobz, it was the “administrative nightmare” of running their own back-office that drew them away from contract staffing.

For starters, there was the liability insurance his firm had to obtain, and each client wanted to see different coverages on the firm’s Certificate of Insurance.  Then there was unemployment and Workers’ Compensation—both filing claims and fighting them. The firm has not run any contractors out of its own back-office in two years, but they still have to administer claims on some former employees.

Realizing they were leaving money on the table by not offering contractors, Leishman sought a way to get back into the contract staffing game.  Like Bartunek, he found the answer in outsourcing the employment of his contractors to a contract staffing back-office.

He is once again making contract placementswithout the administrative nightmares.

“We are back in contract staffing because of the back-office service,” said Leishman.  “We wanted to to be a full-range office.  We are able to take care of the clients and candidates whether they prefer contract or direct.”

If you want to be able to solve ALL of your clients’ staffing problems, you have to provide contract staffing services.  But you don’t have to take on all the liability and administrative hassles.

Let a contract staffing back-office provider do that for you so you can continue to do what you do best . . . recruit!

When it comes to social media and recruiting, LinkedIn is no longer the only game in town. Recruiters are finding ways to use nearly every social network to improve their recruiting processes.  (Even Pinterest! See blog post.)

Erin OsterhausThe 2013 Recruiting Channels Survey, conducted by Software Advice, found that 80% of recruiters are using social media to source hires.  Perhaps more surprisingly, recruiters reported that social media delivered the hightest quality candidates, second behind only employee referrals.

On its blog, Software Advice specifically focused on Twitter, discussing how Twitter as a company uses its own network to get the best candidates.  The article provided many useful tips, but the majority were aimed at corporate, in-house recruiters.

So to find out how independent recruiters can use Twitter, we interviewed Software Advice’s HR Analyst Erin Osterhaus, whose job it is to provide advice on the best recruiting, talent management, and leadership techniques.

TEC: Independent recruiters don’t have the advantage of being able to use other employees and company culture to help them market their open jobs, as was suggested in the article.  What unique techniques can they use?

Osterhaus: Social media is still a useful tool, even if you don’t have a large pool of employees from which to expose a company’s culture and open positions.  Independent recruiters can have social profiles targeted specifically at job seekers.  For instance, on Twitter, you could advertise the positions for which you’re hiring.  And in the case of Twitter, be sure to use hashtags that are industry-specific in order to get your tweets in front of as many potential candidates as possible.

TEC: What are some tips for recruiters just getting started with Twitter who may be a little intimidated?

Osterhaus: Don’t be afraid! There are plenty of guides out there to help you ease into the Twitterverse.  Just realize that your Tweets are public and should conform to the voice of your organization.  Then go from there.

TEC: Hashtags were discussed extensively in the “5 Strategies” article.  In my experience, this is the thing that intimidates new users the most.  They wonder how they know which hashtags to use.  Any advice?

Osterhaus: There are certain standard hashtags that are frequently used by job seekers on the job hunt.  For instance, #hiring, #tweetmyjobs, #jobopening, etc.  (For a more extensive list, click here.)  If you want to get your job postings in front of these candidates, all you have to do is include the hashtagged phrase in your tweet.

And if you want to get your Tweets in front of a specific audience, for example, software developers, you can use hashtags such as #hadoop, #linux, #ubuntu, etc.  This strategy can work for all types of positions.  You just need to think of keywords related to the job, and then put a # in front.

For reference, there are also useful tools to help you discover which hashtags are trending in certain industries. is one such tool.  Just type in a keyword in the search box, and you’ll get a list of trending words to use in your posts.

Erin Oster­haus is the HR Analyst at Soft­ware Advice, a free resource for software reviews and comparisons.  She focuses on the HR mar­ket, offer­ing advice to indus­try pro­fes­sion­als on the best recruit­ing, tal­ent man­age­ment, and lead­er­ship tech­niques.  Feel free to con­nect with her on LinkedIn.

A major deadline for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the healthcare reform law also known as Obamacare, is coming up quickly.  If a recruiter has even one employee, they will likely have to comply.

The ACA requires employers to provide employees with a notice about coverage options available through the Marketplace, which was created by the ACA to provide an online “one-stop shop” for individuals to compare private health insurance options.

Starting on October 1, employers must provide the notice to new employees.  In addition, it must be distributed to all existing employees by October 1.  The notice must inform employees of the following:

  • The Marketplace will be available starting January 1, 2014.
  • What services the Marketplace will provide and how to contact it.
  • They may be eligible for premium tax credits if their employer doesn’t offer an plan that provides “minimum value” and that is “affordable,” as defined by the ACA.
  • They may lose their employer’s healthcare contribution (if applicable) if they choose to purchase insurance through the Marketplace.

You can find more details about the requirements under this provision.

A common misconception about Obamacare is that employers only have to worry about it if they have 50 or more employees.  This stems from the law’s employer mandate, which will require employers with 50 or more employee to provide healthcare starting in 2015.  But even the smallest employers, including recruiting firms that have any in-house employees or contractors on their payroll, have responsibilities under the ACA.

This required notice is perhaps the best example.  The ACA actually created this provision as an amendment to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  So if you are subject to the FLSA, as almost every employer is, you must comply with this provision regardless of whether you offer insurance to employees.  If you are not sure if the FLSA applies to you, you can find out by visiting this page on the Department of Labor website.

Fortunately, you don’t have to write this notice from scratch.  The Department of Labor provides Model Notices for employers who offer a healthcare plan and employers who do not offer a healthcare plan.

Regardless of your firm’s size, it’s important that you stay on top of the developments surrounding the healthcare reform law.  Not only could there be implications for you as an employer, but your clients could also look to you for answers to their staffing issues that may arise as a result of Obamacare.

According to Glassdoor, 68% of job seekers use their mobile device to search for jobs once a week or more.

As the number of mobile-dependent job seekers continues to grow, it’s becoming increasingly important that recruiters take their sites mobile.  But there’s more to being mobile-friendly than simply having a site that looks okay on a smartphone (although that’s a good start, see #1).

Below are four things you may want to incorporate into your online recruiting strategy to engage with contract candidates through their mobile devices:

1. Responsive website design.  By using responsive design, you can ensure that your website is visible and attractive on any screen, including smartphones and tablets.  Not only that, but you can also protect your Google search engine rankings.  According to, not having a mobile-friendly site can actually hurt you in Google search rankings.  If you don’t have responsive design or if you’re  not sure if you do, contact your web designer or find one that can build you a recruiter website with responsive design.

J.D. Fye2. Easy application process.  This is a harder nut to crack, but not impossible.  In fact,  a recent Forbes article describes how Sodexo has sucessfully allowed potential employees to apply for jobs via their mobile app.  But if the development of a mobile apps is not in your budget, you may want to check out the “Apply with LinkedIn” function.  “Apply with LinkedIn is useful because it allows a job seeker to submit their information on the go without the hassle of having to type that information into fields on a mobile device or having to wait to find a computer to submit their resume,” said J.D. Fye, Website Consultant for Hiring Hook, a website design company exclusively for recruiters.  “With this feature, they can simply sign into their LinkedIn account and tap ‘Submit.’  I’ve spoken with many recruiters who often treat LinkedIn profiles the same way they would a resume, so this is a quick and easy way for a candidate to get their information to an employer.”

3. Text and email updates.  Mobile opens up a whole new avenue for how you can reach job seekers.  One idea is to have a place on your website where they can sign up for hot job alerts through text message and/or email.

4. Timed updates.  According to a article, job seekers tend to browse for jobs when they are on breaks throughout that day.  For that reason, your most captive mobile audience is between 6:30 and 9:15 a.m. (before work), 11:45 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. (lunch), and 4:30 and 9:45 p.m. (after work).

We would assume the percentage of contractors who use mobile devices for job searching is even higher than for other candidates because they are often working remotely with limited access to desktop computers.  So if you’re placing contractors, you might want to put these items at the top of your to-do list.

As the biotechnology industry grows, interest in contract staffing among both companies and workers in this area is also increasing, creating a hot new niche for contract staffing recruiters.

Biotechnology professionals are those who are involved in the use of living organisms to create certain products, such as engineered crops and pharmaceutical drugs.  These include a wide range of analysts, scientists, engineers, technicians, and specific titles such as biomedical engineer, medical scientist, biochemist, and more.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment in this area is expected to increase by 31% between 2010 and 2020.

Due to the nature of the work and the unique characteristics of the industry, some recruiters are noticing that a lot of that hiring is happening in contract staffing, so they’ve started to offer contractors to biotech companies.  One of these recruiters is Jim Davidson of Human Capital Resource, LLC.  Davidson’s firm has provided biotech and pharmaceutical companies with direct hire candidates since 2005, but just recently started to provide contract staffing to meet his clients’ need for cost savings and flexibility.

“Many companies in this niche are older companies with very rich benefits packages,” he said.  “It costs them a tremendous amount of money to hire on a full-time basis.  Not only that, but they could be working on a $7 billion drug that could end up being a bust or approval could be delayed, in which case they would have to scale back.”

When these companies do have to hire on a full-time or direct hire basis, they tend to be very selective.  As a result, Davidson is also noticing a growing demand for contract-to-direct services, which his firm can now provide.  Contract-to-direct arrangements, often referred to as temp-to-hire, allow clients to try a candidate before they make a direct-hire commitment.

Recruiter Raymond Gooch has noticed a similar trend.  Gooch and his firm, Spectrum Career, LLC, recently provided job search skills training to college students who received grants funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for workforce development in bioscience.

“Even though the individuals participating in the bioscience training often had transferable skills, they usually had no experience in the industry,” Gooch said.  “Hiring temps/contractors gives the employer an opportunity to evaluate the worker prior to making a long-term commitment.”

It is also an attractive option for many biotechnology professionals.  According to the recent Randstad Pharma Engagement Study, the most important factor that drives the engagement of pharmaceutical/biotech professionals is flexibility.  Contract staffing provides the ultimate in flexibility, often allowing workers to take on project-based assignments with flexible schedules.  They also have the opportunity to take time off between assignments. This is particularly popular with older workers, Davidson said.

“Those in the later stages of their careers enjoy it,” he said. “There is a lot of flexibility. They don’t have the same financial pressures as younger workers, so contracting becomes more attractive later in their careers.”

Davidson feels the sweet spot for recruiters wanting to place contractors in the biotech niche is smaller companies.

“A lot of the larger companies are very well organized when it comes to contract staffing and have vendor managers involved in the process,” he said. “It becomes very difficult.”

As the products produced by biotech companies become more and more important, we’ll be keeping an eye on this hot contract staffing niche!

Contract StaffingFrom Staffing Industry Analysts to the Associated Press (AP), there seems to be one hot topic this summer: contract staffing.

The word is that contract hiring is going to continue increasing throughout the rest of 2013, as it becomes more evident that contract staffing has carved out a permanent place in the American workforce. Consider the following statistics from recent reports on the Internet:

  • 31% of companies surveyed by CareerBuilder plan to hire contract workers, up from 21% last year. (
  • The third quarter of 2013 is expected to mark the 15th consecutive quarter of year-over-year increases in contract hiring. (G. Palmer & Associates via
  • Contact/temporary work accounted for 15% of all American job growth in the past four years. (CareerBuilder via Staffing Industry Analysts)
  • The number of contract/temporary workers has jumped by more than 50% since the end of the recession. (AP)
  • 3/4 of the economists surveyed by the AP believe the increased use of contract workers is the start of a long-term trend. (AP).

What is behind these statistics and all the buzz surrounding contract staffing?  The economy is still one of the biggest factors.

“Companies are adding more employees to keep pace with demand for their products and services, but they’re not rushing into a full-scale expansion of headcount in light of economic headwinds that still linger today,” said CareerBuilder CEO Matt Ferguson.  “The projected surge in temporary hiring from July to December is evidence of both a growing confidence in the market and a recession-induced hesitation to immediately place more permanent hires on the books.”

But Ethan Harris, global economist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, does not believe the trend is tied solely to the economy.

“There’s been a generational shift toward a less committed relationship between the firm and the worker,” he said.

So the question is, with all this talk about contract staffing, are YOU talking about it with your clients?  If not, you could be missing out on a huge opportunity to increase your sales and create a steady stream of income for yourself.

Don’t assume that your clients aren’t using contractors or are not interested in them just because they don’t discuss them with you.  They may have just assumed you don’t handle contract staffing.  When you start talking about contract staffing, you might just be surprised by the results!