Not sure about temping? Let’s clear up the misconceptions

The majority of Australians are happy to consider temporary and contract roles or already undertake such assignments, but misconceptions surrounding this form of working blur the opinions of others.

According to a poll of 13,247 Australians, conducted on our website, 69 per cent are happy to consider temporary and contract roles. Just 17 per cent said they only look for permanent roles while a further 14 per cent already work as a temporary or contractor.

But while temporary, contract and freelance workers have certainly become the new normal in workplaces across Australia, a number of common misconceptions about these jobs remain.

The first is that these roles are menial and only for juniors. However, today many highly-skilled professionals work on assignment in interim roles. This work requires experience and expertise. In fact, many jobseekers are attracted to the variety of tasks temporary or contract roles offer, which exposes you to new systems, solutions and ideas, all valuable additions to your CV.

Another is that it’s an unstable form of employment. Even though temporary assignments have an end date, they can often be extended. Also if you approach your recruiting expert ahead of your end date, you can line up your next assignment in advance. We have many ‘career temps’ at Hays – people who work continuously on assignment from one to the next. And let’s not forget that many employers use temps or contractors to test talent out before they employ on a permanent basis, so it could be your foot in the door.

Some people also worry that as a temp you’ll be an outsider to the team. Most people these days have either been a temp themselves, or had a temp join their team for a period of time in the past. This means people are accustomed to temps coming and going. It also means they are open to building lasting professional relationships with you, giving you the opportunity to quickly build your network to stay up-to-date with the latest trends, hear about relevant job opportunities, receive endorsements and even find new referees.

These roles are also far from dead-end. Assignments offer candidates a broad depth of opportunities, experience and skills development. You can take assignments that will expose you to new industries, systems, technology and ways of working, which will make you more attractive and employable in future.